Why I Love a Strong Heroine

Happy New Year!

Think of your favorite heroines, what traits do you find makes them so loveable? I’ve taken a hard look at the heroines I write, and they all have several traits in common. They are usually intelligent, kind, and capable.

Strength comes from within and doesn’t necessarily mean physical strength, or that the heroine is sassy. You can have a quietly determined heroine who shows more inner strength than a heroine who is physically strong and demanding. There are so many ways a woman can demonstrate strength. That’s how you can make your heroines different but yet still show them as strong, capable women.

I tend to write strong heroines, probably because I had a mother who single-handedly raised me after my father walked out on us when I was twelve. She supported me, and gave me the courage to try my hand at anything I wanted.

Now, as I deal with the stress of trying to finish another book after the death of my Aunt and Nana in December, I’m remembering the heroines I’ve fallen in love with over the years, and their struggles and accomplishments are guiding me through my own trials and tribulations.

There are two heroines of mine who seem to call to me at this time.

  1. Sabine Orsini – To Wager the Marquis of Wolverstone (my contribution to
    Captivated by His Kiss Boxed Set Anthology
    Captivated by His Kiss Boxed Set Anthology

    CAPTIVATED BY HIS KISS boxed set 12 January 2015 – 99c)

Sabine is my heroine in book two of my Wicked Wagers trilogy. We first meet Sabine on her return to England after a ten-year absence. She needs a favor from the man she has always loved, the man she jilted, and the man who hates her with as much passion as he once loved her. There is a very good reason why she upped and married someone else, and when we find out what it is—well—let’s say there is not a dry eye, including my hero, Marcus Danvers, Marquis of Wolverstone.

I love how Sabine does what needs to be done without self-pity, without bemoaning her fate. She is grown-up and smart, but also vulnerable. When she has to ask Marcus for a favor, she is strong enough for the both of them, and when the enemy threatens her son…we see what she’s made of and what she will, and has sacrificed, for those she loves. There is so much to admire in Sabine.

So when I’m thinking I can’t face something, I remember Sabine and her strength. She faced a heck of a lot worse.

  1. Rheda Kerrich – Invitation to Scandal
Invitation To Scandal, book #2
Invitation To Scandal, book #2

This sensual Regency-set romance has a free-spirited, confident heroine that I’d love to have as my friend. (Isn’t that the test of a successful heroine, if she’s someone you’d want to spend time with?) When the story starts, Rheda has spent the last five years saving her younger brother’s bankrupt estate-by smuggling. She is independent, and is determined not to rely on any man, but realizes she can’t do this for much longer. I liked that she didn’t crumple and give in to society norms, using marriage as a means for saving her family. Instead, Rheda has dreams of her building a horse stud to supply horses for the cavalry in order to help in the war against the French.

But what I really adored about Rheda was that she is that rare liberated historical heroine. She’s confident in her abilities and she uses her intelligence in her battle with love interest Rufus Knight, Viscount Strathmore. For instance, she needs a quality stallion to breed with her mares. What’s a girl to do when Rufus’s Arab stallion is in the next paddock! Rheda’s prepared to risk it all…

I loved that there was no regret to her actions. She inspires me to be more like that too, and to reach for what I want with no shame.

As I write my current book, heroine, Marisa Hawkestone, now the Duchess of Lyttleton (A Whisper of Desire June 2015, book #4 in the Disgraced Lords series), I am encouraged to see that she is strong too. She’ll need to be in order to face what is coming….

Let me know who your favorite heroine is and why, and win an ARC copy of Invitation To Passion in book format? Open Internationally. Closes 31 January 2015.

Invitation To Passion, book #3
Invitation To Passion, book #3

Consummate rake, Lord Richard Craven, has his heart broken 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?

Follow Bronwen Evans:

USA Today bestselling author Bronwen Evans (Bron to her friends) grew up loving books. She’s always indulged her love for story-telling, and is constantly gobbling up movies, books and theater. Her head is filled with characters and stories, particularly lovers in angst. Being able to write her characters’ stories is never work, it’s a dream come true. Is it any wonder she’s a proud romance writer. She writes both historical and contemporary, sexy romances for the modern woman who likes intelligent, spirited heroines, and compassionate alpha heroes. Her debut Regency romance, Invitation to Ruin won the RomCon Readers Crown Best Historical 2012 and was an RT Reviewers’ Choice Nominee Best First Historical 2011. Her long novella, To Dare the Duke of Dangerfield, was a Top 5 Finalist in the Kindle Book Review Indie Romance Book of the Year 2012 and the RomCon Readers Crown Best Historical 2013. Bron lives in New Zealand with her Cavoodle Brandy. When not ensconced in her study writing her characters’ thrilling journeys to their happy ever after, Bron can be found on the golf course. www.bronwenevans.com

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6 Responses

  1. jessicajefferson

    I love that you mentioned the quiet heroine – strength isn’t always synonymous with blue stocking or sassy in Regency especially.

  2. Barbara Monajem

    I agree with Jessica re quiet heroines. I like the sort who don’t push themselves forward but take over when the going is tough.

  3. Jude Knight

    My favourite books always have strong heroines. They might not always know how strong they are – perhaps their trials have left them with fears that they need to overcome on their way to a happy ending. But they have the inner strength to face up to those fears – often prompted by love for family or for the hero. And a strong hero, too; one who is strong enough to admit his need for a warrior queen to stand by his side or a clan mother to encourage him to be the best that he can be.

  4. vvaught512

    Christine Derrick in Slightly Dangerous by Mary Balogh. She has to be strong to enter into a relationship with Wulfric Bedwyn. Christine has a quiet strength which is just what Bewcastle needs.