Release: January 28, 2015
“You have the ability to make controversial characters sympathetic. Maybe I just want to be understood.”
In short, everything she sought in a biography subject. When in her life will she get another chance to work with a living legend? But saying yes to one temptation soon leads to another.
Suddenly she’s having heated fantasies about her subject, fantasies this blue-eyed-devil is only too willing to stoke. She’d thought self-control was in her DNA, after all she grew up a minister’s daughter. She thought wrong.
Outside your comfort zone is the only place worth living…
All the damn woman has to do is write down what he tells her. Not make him think.
Turns out he is scared of something – being known.
Rise – a redemption story of a rock star going straight(er) through the love of a good(ish) woman.
Turning a bad boy into a romance hero
By Karina BlissZander Freedman, the rock star hero of Rise, has been a minor character in three previous books. I wrote him as vain, selfish and egotistical, a neglectful son, bad brother and lousy boyfriend. And yet readers loved this guy and wanted his story, possibly because of his few attractive qualities – unflinching honesty, intelligence and a keen sense of irony.One of my biggest challenges in finding ‘the hero-within’ was Zander’s reputation for vanity. How is a reader going to fall in love with a guy rumoured to have had everything from Botox and tattooed eyeliner to hair implants?
In one scene, I had the heroine’s family voice every Yuck the reader would have around a guy with a ‘beauty’ regime. And then fall over themselves when they thought Zander was visiting. Because the guy’s still a rock god, still extraordinary. And it’s too easy to criticize a stranger. In effect, I’m asking the reader to keep an open mind.
Given that Zander is smart and ambitious it also made sense that he would deliberately exaggerate his vanity for the press. Any publicity is good publicity when this showman is promoting the band’s tour. He also takes a pragmatist’s view of maintaining his looks; keeping in shape is simply a part of his job as Rage’s frontman. And finally, I made him supremely confident in his masculinity. At one point he even says, “A real man should be able to seduce a woman in a tutu and a tiara…Actually that would be fun.”
Most importantly, I gave Zander the vulnerability attached to being a beautiful person. Women date me because of the way I look. What will happen if I stop these treatments? Who will love me as I age? The Beauty, as well as the Beast, is judged on appearances.
Of course that’s just one aspect of the reinvention of Zander Freedman. Hopefully, I’ve intrigued you enough to read about his moral make-over.
Do you have a favorite bad-boy hero? Enter the Release Giveaway and go into the draw for an e-book of Rise.