Dear Avon Books,
Where are my heroes? Whenever I'm reading a book by one of my favorite authors I find I'm falling for the wrong guy not the hero, but the other man and what I really want is for him to have his own story.
Like Jake Linley, from Someone to Watch Over Me by Lisa Kleypas…that doctor could sit by my bedside if I ever got sick. And Ned Blydon in Splendid by Julia Quinn...he makes me want to learn to waltz! I never thought living in a drafty castle would be much fun until Simon of Ravenswood in Master of Desire by Kinley MacGregor came along.
Anyway, I just wanted to let you know that these are my men when do they get their stories?
Sincerely,A Romance Fan
Some books are so special that there is more than one hero to love, but only a single story is told. So if you find yourself asking, "Where is my hero?" you'll discover the answer right here in this delicious collection by New York Times bestseller Lisa Kleypas, New York Times bestseller Julia Quinn and USA Today bestseller Kinley MacGregor.
About the Author
New York Times bestselling author Lisa Kleypas graduated from Wellesley College with a political science degree. She’s a RITA award-winning author of both historical romance and contemporary women’s fiction. She lives in Washington State with her husband Gregory and their two children.
#1 New York Times and international bestselling author Sherrilyn Kenyon also writes as Kinley MacGregor. Since her first book debuted in 1993 while she was still in college, she has placed more than 80 novels on the New York Times list in all formats and genres, including manga and graphic novels, and has more than 70 million books in print worldwide. Her current series include: Dark-Hunters®, Chronicles of Nick®, Deadman’s Cross™, Black Hat Society™, Nevermore™, Silent Swans™, Lords of Avalon® and The League®. Over the years, her Lords of Avalon® novels have been adapted by Marvel, and her Dark-Hunters® and Chronicles of Nick® are New York Times bestselling manga and comics, and are #1 bestselling adult coloring books.
Julia Quinn started writing her first book one month after finishing college and has been tapping away at her keyboard ever since. The #1 New York Times bestselling author of more than two dozen novels for Avon Books, she is a graduate of Harvard and Radcliffe Colleges and is one of only sixteen authors ever to be inducted in the Romance Writers of America Hall of Fame. She lives in the Pacific Northwest with her family. Please visit her on the web at www.juliaquinn.com.
Read an Excerpt
Where's My Hero?
By Lisa Kleypas
Harper Collins PublishersCopyright © 2003 Lisa Kleypas All right reserved. ISBN: 0060505249
Against the Odds
There were two ways to pick a husband - with your head or your heart. Being a sensible young woman, Lydia Craven had naturally done the former. Which was not to say that she didn't care for her future husband. As a matter of fact, she was very fond of Robert, Lord Wray, who was kind and affable, with a quiet charm that never grated on the nerves. He was handsome in an approachable way, his refined features providing the perfect framework for a pair of intelligent blue eyes and a smile that was employed somewhat judiciously.
There was no doubt in Lydia's mind that Wray would never object to her work. In fact, he shared her interest in mathematics and science. And he mingled easily with her family - her unconventional, close-knit family, which had been blessed with enormous wealth but possessed a singularly undistinguished pedigree. It was a high mark in Wray's favor, that he could so easily overlook Lydia's ignoble ancestry ... but then, as she had reflected wryly, a prospective dowry of a hundred thousand pounds would be a savory condiment to even the most plebeian of dishes. Since Lydia's come-out at the age of eighteen two years earlier, she had been ardently pursued by a legion of fortune hunters. However, as a peerwho had come into his own sizeable inheritance, Wray had no need of Lydia's money - another mark on his side.
Everyone approved of the match, even Lydia's overprotective father. The only mild objection had come from her mother, Sara, who had seemed vaguely perturbed by her determination to marry Wray. "The earl seems to be a fine, honorable man," Sara had said while she and Lydia had wandered through the gardens of the Craven estate in Herefordshire. "And if he is the one that you've set your heart on, I would say that you've made a good choice ..."
"But?" Lydia had prompted.
Sara had stared thoughtfully at the rich planting of golden kingcups and yellow irises that lined the neat, brick-paved walkway. It had been a warm spring day, the pale blue sky embossed with fleecy clouds.
"Lord Wray's virtues are indisputable," Sara had said. "However, he is not the kind of man that I imagined you would marry."
"But Lord Wray and I are so much alike," Lydia had protested. "For one thing, he is the only man of my acquaintance who has actually bothered to read my article on multidimensional geometry."
"And well he should be admired for that," Sara had said, her blue eyes sparkling with sudden wry amusement. Although Sara was an intelligent woman in her own right, she had freely admitted that her daughter's advanced mathematical reasoning was far beyond her own understanding. "However, I had hoped that you would someday find a man who might balance your nature with a little more warmth and irreverence than Lord Wray seems to possess. You are such a serious girl, my dearest Lydia."
"I'm not that serious," she had protested.
Sara had smiled. "When you were a little girl, I tried in vain to coax you to paint pictures of trees and flowers, and instead you insisted on making lines to demonstrate the difference between obtuse angles and orthogonal ones. When we played with blocks and I began to build houses and towns with them, you showed me how to construct a dihedral pyramid - "
"All right, all right," Lydia had grumbled with a reluctant grin. "But that only serves to demonstrate why Lord Wray is perfect for me. He loves machines and physics and mathematics. In fact, we're considering writing a paper together about the possibility of vehicles being powered by atmospheric propulsion. No horses necessary!"
"Fascinating," Sara had remarked vaguely, leading Lydia away from the paved path and wandering to a wildflower meadow that stretched beyond a grove of fruit trees.
As Sara had lifted her skirts ankle-high and waded among the thick carpeting of violets and white narcissi, the sun shining on her chestnut hair, she had looked far too young to be a matron of forty-five. She had paused to scoop up a clump of violets and inhale their heavy perfume. Her speculative blue eyes had regarded Lydia over the brilliant knot of flowers. "In between all these conversations of machines and mathematics, has Lord Wray ever kissed you?"
Lydia had laughed at the question. "You're not supposed to ask your daughter things like that."
"Well, has he?"
As a matter of fact, Wray had kissed Lydia on many occasions, and Lydia had found it enjoyable. Of course, she had led an extremely sheltered life, and she'd had no basis for comparison, except ...
Suddenly the image of Jake Linley had appeared in her mind, his dark golden head bending over hers ... the sweet, dark fire of his kiss, the pleasure of his hands on her body ... and Lydia had shoved the thought away immediately, as she had a thousand times before. That night had been an anomaly that she would do well to forget. Linley had only been toying with her - the kiss had been nothing more than a prank fueled by one glass of brandy too many. She had not seen Linley at all in the three months since then, and when they next met, she would pretend to have forgotten all about the episode.
"Yes," she'd admitted to her mother, "the earl has kissed me, and it was very pleasant."
"I'm glad to hear it." Sara had let the violets spill from her fingers in a vibrant shower of fluttering petals. She'd rubbed her perfumed fingertips behind her ears and darted a slightly mischievous glance at Lydia ...
Excerpted from Where's My Hero? by Lisa Kleypas
Copyright © 2003 by Lisa Kleypas
Excerpted by permission. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.