I hope you've been turning the pages this summer on a beach or a cabin porch!
When I first began writing romance, my favorite reviewers gave monthly awards for heroes, like the K.I.S.S. award—Knight in Shining Silver and the Rake of the Month. I delighted when my heroes were chosen (Leigh Nash in Winterburn’s Bride, soon to be re-released, and (Nick Seymour in Sweet Bargain, free when you sign up for my newsletter).
In hindsight, I wonder that I didn’t notice that heroines were quite overlooked in the awards department. Holy slumbering feminism! How did I miss that fact?! Too many years later, I say there ought to be some heroine awards. I’m going to start the trend with the first ever Obstinate Headstrong Girl Award.
I have lots of candidates and models to choose from—Janet Scott and Rachel Bailey from the British detective series—Scott & Bailey; Stephanie Plum from Janet Evanovich; Elizabeth Bennet, Austen’s original obstinate, headstrong girl; and Amanda Price, her alter ego, from Lost in Austen; Georgette Heyer’s Sophy, J. K. Rowling’s Hermione Granger, Rowling herself, and, of course, Jane Eyre.
A likely candidate, you may or may not know, is Alan Bradley’s Flavia de Luce, an extraordinary young sleuth. In love with chemistry and language, and undeterred by villains of every size and shape, fearless Flavia loves a puzzle. As Flavia herself claims, “Murder, urgency, frenzy, fear: Who could resist? It was my cup of tea.”
Flavia has an almost Homeric Greek way of looking things like corpses in the face without being dismayed (like Scott and Bailey, too). So her favorite snails, for example, are “those denizens of Australia’s Great Barrier Reef, the effects of whose venom are so disgusting that they can only be fully described in medical texts with plain brown wrappers.”
You can meet Flavia in Alan Bradley’s The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie. You’ll find Scott & Bailey on Hulu.
Thinking about these “obstinate headstrong girls” has inspired my latest heroine, Emily Radstock, an earl’s daughter who takes on the male establishment by writing letters to the Times, until she meets counter-spy Ajax Lynley and plunges into adventures only an obstinate headstrong girl would enjoy. Emily and Lynley appear in A Spy’s Guide to Seduction, coming from Kensington in 2019.
I hope you’ll join me and use the comment box here to nominate one of your favorite strong heroines for an “Obstinate Headstrong Girl” award.
Thanks for joining the blog today, and happy reading as always,
Where to find out more about my books:
All my books are available on line:
You can find excerpts and latest info in these spots: