Last month I introduced the first installment in this five part series. This month I’m continuing the deconstruction of the modern Regency with a glimpse at what makes the genre one of the best-selling in romance—the hero.
What does it take to land a leading role in a regency romance? Believe it or not, the gig isn’t as easy as one would think. It takes a lot more than a hot bod and a pretty face to fill the hessians of the many rogues that have graced the regency genre Mr. Knightly, Mr. Rochester, Westmoreland, Moncrieffe, Dain (I just swooned), and any man that goes by Bridgerton—what do they all have that others don’t? There’s got to be a reason I chose to tattoo Mr. Darcy on my foot instead of the name of my husband (Sorry, honey!)? So, what does it take to be a regency hero?
Wit: Perhaps my favorite part in any regency is the witty banter. It takes two to ‘banter’, therefore the hero must be able to pull off his fair share of witty comments in order for a book to be successful. If he’s going to give the cut direct, then he’s got to do it with style.
Humor: I always say when I grow up, I want to live in Julie Anne Long’s Pennyroyal Green. If you think about it, that not-so-sleepy village wouldn’t have been nearly as fun without the hilarious antics of the gentleman who occupied it. Slapstick or otherwise, hilarity must ensue if the regency rake is to be charming.
Money: Titled or not, the hero must be bring something to the table. Preferably, several thousand pounds a year. Even if the hero doesn’t start out rich, chances are by the time you’ve turned that last page he’s inherited a title or fortune.
Great hair: When was the last time you flipped open a historical romance and the hero was sporting a comb over, or a receding hair line with a saucer sized bald spot in the back? I never have. Flowing or spiky, wavy or straight, the hero is usually sporting some serious Fabio-grade locks.
Sexual Prowess: Cue Barry White! The regency hero is a world-class lover. Experience isn’t even necessary, though it’s often preferred. Able to reduce his heroine to tears of joy and assorted sounds of pleasure with little more than a smoldering glance her way, his appetite is unsurpassed by other mere mortals and his recovery time…What recovery time? The regency hero is always ready, willing, and able to please his heroine in every imaginable way.
ROMANTIC PURSUIT QUESTION: What Jane Austen book inspired the name I have tattooed on my foot (as mentioned in today’s blog)? Click here to answer.
Jessica Jefferson makes her home in northern Indiana, or as she likes to think of it—almost Chicago. She is heavily inspired by classic sweeping, historical romance novels, but aims to take those key emotional elements and inject a fresh blend of quick dialogue and comedy. She invites you to visit her at jessicajefferson.com and read more of her random romance musings. Her latest book, Taming Miss Tisdale, is available now.