Villains—love to hate, or simply hate!

Dear Readers

Today I’m talking about villains—those characters we all love to hate. There are villains and then there are villains. In romance, there are villains who, once we get to know them, aren’t as bad as we think and totally redeemable, then there are scoundrels who break women’s hearts, and then there are those who are truly evil, who actually engage in torture and murder etc.

Invitation to Passion (revised-final) @ 200 -72 dpi low resExamples of a villain who is not of the murdering variety, but who is certainly a cad of the worst kind, is the dashing John Willoughby from SENSE and SENSIBILITY. I think you’ll agree he was a thorough rascal and an immoral scoundrel. Totally irredeemable.

Then there is the very evil anti-hero who is found in romantic suspense type stories. I have two very evil villains in my upcoming soon to be released Regency romantic suspense, INVITATION TO PASSION (29 July 2014). Both of my villains are slightly mad and are determinedly focused on revenge. I shan’t share who they are as that would ruin the story. Here’s the blurb:

Consummate rake, Lord Richard Craven, has his heartbroken when the woman he loves is forced into an arranged marriage to a violent brute. To make matters worse, circumstances force him to marry Lady Madeline Knight—a woman he views more like a sister-only for fate to play the cruelest of tricks. Shortly after his wedding his former lover is widowed, and Richard learns she could be pregnant with his child.

Madeline Knight thought she was doing the right thing when she saved Richard Craven from his lover’s irate husband. Now her silly schoolgirl crush has left her married to a man who’s in love with another woman. Consumed with guilt over trapping Richard, she tries her best to be the perfect wife and win his heart. Failure is not an option. For if she fails she loses everything, she loves him too much not to set him free…

While Richard and Madeline confront the reality of their marriage, Madeline’s life comes under threat. A family enemy is set on revenge. Will Richard learn the truth of his heart, and what is truly precious to him, before the unknown enemy destroys their world?

Then there is the hero who, at the beginning of the book, is a bit of a rake, and although, Wicked Wagers Trilogy (revised-final) @ 200-72 dpi high resalong with the heroine we want to hate him, it’s not long before we realize that behind his rakish ways beats a heart just longing to find that special ‘one’. Harlow Telford, Duke of Dangerfield in my Wicked Wagers Trilogy, book #1, TO DARE THE DUKE OF DANGERFIELD, is just such a mistaken villain.

I must admit I am partial to all villains if their actions fit the story. Sense and Sensibility would not have had such tension or drama without John. Plus, I’m also partial to a damsel in distress type story too. I do love a story where it starts with a very evil man, and then I love watching him get his just deserves.

I always find hidden evil far more interesting in any story, be it a movie, TV program or book! I love being able to try to follow clues or hints from the writer as to who the baddies might be and I’m extra happy when I’m surprised.

Then again, sometimes I like knowing whom the villain is from the start, so I can take satisfaction in watching him be destroyed from the very start.

In Invitation to Passion, I don’t promise to surprise you, but I hope you are at least unsure of the villain’s identity for most of the book. Drop me a line and let me know at which chapter you guessed who the murderer is in Invitation to Passion.

Invitation-to-Scandal300Today I’m giving away a copy (book or eBook) of Invitation to Scandal, the book before Invitation to Passion, which sets up the villainy. Tell me who you think is the sexiest villain (male or female) in any book or TV show or movie, and which villain you’d like to personally redeem. I’ll draw the winner on Saturday 21 June and its open internationally.

Thanks for popping by!

Are you playing the Romantic Pursuit game? Here’s today’s question: What’s the name of the heroine in INVITATION TO PASSION? Click here to answer.

I also have a contest running for Invitation to Passion Pre-Order


Follow Victoria Vane:

Romance Novelist

VICTORIA VANE is an award-winning author of smart and sexy romance with works ranging from wild comedic romps to emotionally compelling erotic romance. Her books have received more than twenty awards and nominations to include the 2014 RONE Award for Treacherous Temptations and Library Journal Best E-Book romance of 2012 for The Devil DeVere series. She lives the beautiful upstate of South Carolina with her husband, two sons, a little black dog, and an Arabian horse.

13 Responses

      • kathyisareader

        Milady in three musketeers. She could be loved but keeps trying to get more by using people.
        Not sure who I would redeem but I know my daughter would love to redeem Benedict Cumberbatch’s character in Star Trek.

  1. annestenhouse

    An interesting post, Bronwen. I like writing the villain and each of my books so far has had one (rather than an outside or state of the world conflict). I wonder whether we can redeem villains? will think some more over that. Anne Stenhouse

  2. Harliqueen

    The book sounds rather exciting! 😀

    I think villains are hard to write sometimes, because they still need to have a motivation behind them.

    • Bronwen Evans

      They do need motivation however, I find them easy to write because it’s far easier to be bad when you don’t care about the consequences of your actions.

      • Harliqueen

        Very good point 😀 I’m definitely going to have to go in with that mind-set next time I write the bad guy!

  3. Sandra Owens

    I love a good villain, and Harliqueen is right, they are difficult to write sometimes. Enjoyed your post, Bronwen.

  4. Gina Conkle

    Hi Bronwen,
    Great post! I felt Lord Richard Craven’s “stuck in a corner” dilemma when reading the post. And to through in the baby that could be his! Invitation to Passion sounds like a page turner. To answer your question, the latest villain I’ve fallen into deep like with is Colonel John Andre on the TV show “Turn” set during the American War Revolution. He’s a charming bad boy villain and I want very much for him to have a happy ending. Unfortunately, I know the real life John Andre met with a bad end.
    Very enjoyable post, Bronwen. Now I have to find out what’s going on with Lord Craven’s choice.

    • hollybushbooks

      Great post, Bronwen. Good villains make or break a story. And at least in the movie, there was a sense that Willoughby knew he was being an ass but couldn’t help himself. And Gina – I’ve heard great things about ‘Turn’. Is it a winner?

  5. Glenda

    Great post Bronwen! The villain who I thought of first – who does redeem himself through the series – is Admiral James Norrington from the Pirates of the Caribbean movies. I love Jack Davenport’s voice. 🙂

  6. Stepanie G. Hanno

    Wonderful blog! I found it while surfing around on Yahoo News.
    Do you have any tips on how to get listed in Yahoo News?
    I’ve been trying for a while but I never seem to get there!
    Appreciate it