After avenging the murders of his family, Gareth Lowell
headed west to put his demons to rest. Though several
years have passed, he still carries the weight of his sins
and doesnâ€™t believe he deserves to be loved â€“ even by the
beautiful Portia Townsend. Heâ€™s known Portia since she was
a young girl, and though sheâ€™s blossomed into a voluptuous
woman, he resists the deep longing she stirs in him.
When Portia realizes Gareth will never see her as anything
more than the feisty, silly girl she once was, she decides
to move on. Trouble is, Portia has once again gotten
herself into a dangerous situation, and the only way out
is to marry Gareth â€” if only temporarily. Turns out
getting hitched was the easy part, while giving up a
scorching passion is the last thing either are willing to
I'm looking forward to reading this book. (Jenny Schwartzberg 6:53pm April 11, 2010)
A traveler is more mysterious, but I like to know where a guy hangs his hat. Where there are roots to anchor, I'm more inclined to become attached myself since the setting plays more of an important role and is almost a character itself. (Alyson Widen 12:59pm June 22, 2010)
I really don't have a preference. It depends on the story and his overall background that help to tell why he stays put or travels. (Leni Kaye 2:11pm June 22, 2010)
Traveler, they are kind of mysterious and surprise you with their knowlege of different places! (JoAnn White 2:57pm June 22, 2010)
Alyson - As an author, I like the way you think! Travelers are very mysterious but I do tend to handle setting as another character.
Yay, Leni! You make me feel so much better. It does all seem to come down to motivate, motivate, motivate as to what will work for a hero, doesn't it?
Jo - Ooh, sometimes travelers just do tall, dark and sexy the best because they're so mysterious. Yum. (Diane Whiteside 4:49pm June 22, 2010)
At one time I would have preferred a someone who stayed in one place, but now I think a person who travels makes a storyline much more interesting and exciting. There's much more to tell about their life. They experience more in their life as well, as they travel from place to place. (Peggy Roberson 4:49pm June 22, 2010)
My hero would have to be a little bit of both..a traveler as well as someone who settles in one place. While he is trying to find himself, I would want him to wander a bit, but once he figures out who he is, I think I want him firmly planted. (Robin McKay 5:53pm June 22, 2010)
I could go happily with either. I love a steady man but a drifter, as it were, intriguing. (Mary Preston 6:24pm June 22, 2010)
It really doesnt matter to me. As long as he is a good guy, strong character and if he is a drifter, the love of a good woman will change him. LOL. (Pat Lieberman 6:37pm June 22, 2010)
A hero can trsvel, but it is nice to know where he calls home. But don't make the whole story about locations and no plot. I like to finish a book one I start it and I suffered through a recent one. The author spent so much time describing the background that there was very little plot. I had read over 100 pages before there seemed to be any action. I was relieved when I finally finished the book. (Gladys Paradowski 8:39pm June 22, 2010)
It truly depends on the hero. With some, their identity is tied to a place, as in your examples. With others, their personalities and sense of purpose is so strong they are bigger than a place. No matter where they find themselves, they will take over and do what needs to be done. Either one works, it all depends on the story and the character. (Patricia Barraclough 8:40pm June 22, 2010)
Peggy - That's a very interesting advantage to a traveler! Gareth certainly supplied more resilience to meet Portia's needs, thanks to his travels, than he would have had if he'd spent all his life in Kentucky.
Robin - Ah, that's a nice bit of wisdom and one Gareth certainly agrees with!
Mary - IMHO being courted by a drifter is more interesting but marriage to a steady man is more relaxing. Usually.
Pat - Oh yes, he really does need to be a good man more than anything else, doesn't he?
Gladys - For a writer, balancing action and description is always hard. And we must, must always keep the emotion coming! Thank you for reminding me.
Patricia - I agree that both work. Maybe it's because his setting builds one type of hero's purpose, while another type of hero is so strong in himself that he doesn't need a specific location. Who knows? Sometimes I think readers just gravitate to one type of hero or another; or maybe we seek different types out at different stages in our own lives.
But they are both satisfying. (Diane Whiteside 9:18pm June 22, 2010)
Gareth certainly knows his own mind. It would be fun to match wits with a man so stubborn. (Rosemary Krejsa 9:43pm June 22, 2010)
I would have to say that I would find a wandering man interesting but would only want to attach myself for happiness sake to a more stable man! (Brenda Rupp 10:20pm June 22, 2010)
I don't think I would want a hero that travels, I like a man who is dependable, stable and always close. (Diane Sadler 11:36pm June 22, 2010)
My favorite place from childhood was my Grannie Brown's house. Cousins and family would gather for great cooking then opening gifts. After that the kids would put on a record and dance. Anytime we were at her house was fun. She would dress up and go out back door and knock on front door asking for work. She would put on a show for us. We would put up sheets and have puppet shows and all kinds of fun. Of course this ended when she died in 1967 but I still remember. Sometime her brothers would be there and play guitar and fiddle and sing. (Brenda Hill 12:17pm November 6, 2010)
A little town called Barkerville reminds me of happy times as a kid. I love taking my Children there. As for special meals my favorite treat was scones and honey always served with a hot cup of tea! yummy (Darci Paice 3:08am November 6, 2010)
We moved around a lot when I was a child. So no-one place holds memories. Just family. (Mary Preston 8:05am November 6, 2010)
My favourite place was my grandparents little cottage on the Isle of Wight. It's a tiny island on the south coast of England. My father was from there.
We had many happy holidays there, including a couple of Christmases.
Valerie in Germany (Valerie Bongards 9:07am November 6, 2010)
I went to Ireland in 1990 with a friend of mine. I'd been talking about it for over 15 years and finally took my husband and 2 daughters there in 2007. It was the best vacation ever. (Molly Wilsbacher 11:03am November 6, 2010)
I was so warmly welcomed by the Scottish! What a beautiful place! Blessings, Marjorie (Marjorie Carmony 12:02pm November 6, 2010)
I loved my maternal grandmother's tiny, old home with its big yard. Now my sister lives there, so I can still love it and all its memories. (G S Moch 12:13pm November 6, 2010)
My grandparent's house. They lived on the hill above Oolagaha lake here in Oklahoma. It is a man made lake, and they even had stories & pics of when the lake was 'made.' The whole extended family use to gather for every holiday at their house (not so many of us back then). And it would be hard to climb that hill during the few ice/snow storms we get here in OK. We still miss that place. [email protected] (Victoria Colyer-Kerr 12:26pm November 6, 2010)
Stonehenge and a place with similiar connotations called Avebury in England are two of my favorites because of the way the weather being threatening added to the mysterious rings of sotnes there. I also ejhoy being around Serpent Mounds in Ohio which were burial grounds for Native Americans. (Alyson Widen 12:31pm November 6, 2010)
When I was a child, my parents fought a lot---so my grandparent's house was a real haven to me. It was very tiny, but when I cooked there with my Grandmother was some of my happiest times---and holidays were always wonderful there even if there wasn't enough room for all of us at the table. (Sue Farrell 12:47pm November 6, 2010)
We all remember a Thanksgiving at Grandmother's where she had so many dessert choices and requests began being 'small piece of mince & pumpkin with some ice cream' and went on from there around the large table.. Everyone wanted a different combo, of course! She flung up her hands and said "Get what you want out of the kitchen -- I'm done!" and laughed! (Cate Sparks 1:02pm November 6, 2010)
I always remember going to my Grandma's for Thanksgiving and Christmas. Everyone would get together, cousins, aunts, uncles, etc and my Grandma made every dish imaginable but the best part was being with everyone. Loved it and it still is my idea of the perfect Holidays. (Vicki Hancock 1:13pm November 6, 2010)
On Sunday evenings, my family would pack into the car and slowly drive through the Wildlife Preserve. (Kelli Jo Calvert 1:46pm November 6, 2010)
The thing I remember the most was wakeing up on Christmas to the wonderful smell of Cinnamon rolls and not knowing what I wanted first the gifts or the rolls, It was such a great thing about my childhood that I has made sure my children has the same memory, I make the rolls the night before and get up early on christmas to bake them so the smell wakes the house. (Vickie Hightower 2:03pm November 6, 2010)
The many things that i remember waking up to on Chrismas was holiday music playing on the radio, my grandma cooking breakfast and preping for dinner, and me looking under the Christmas tree fo many presents that had yet to be opened. (Anthonia Sharp 2:07pm November 6, 2010)
We always had the best time at my granparents' home... the place was small, but it was filled with love... miss going there for holidays! (Colleen Conklin 2:14pm November 6, 2010)
My fond memories is spending the Holidays with my godparents. My parents have immigrated to the United States. Everything was foreign to them. There was no such thing as Thanksgiving or Christmas back in their country so my godparents had my family spend every holiday with them. I remembered the love and the joy and just spending family time with each others. (Kai Wong 2:26pm November 6, 2010)
I remember Christmas at my Grandmother's house, all the Aunts, Uncles, and Cousins. There were two dinner tables, one for the adults and one for the kids. It was sign of maturity when I was finally able to sit at the "grown ups" table [but not nearly as fun:)]. (Robin McKay 3:05pm November 6, 2010)
Having the "greater" family at our house was fun.Food always tasted better when many hands had prepared it. Aunt Crista played the piano, carols & old favorite songs were sung. I learned to harmonize from loved ones who'd sung for years without the benefit of an instrument. I have to add that it wasn't just Christmas or Thanksgiving that we gathered. What fun it was in summer with the homemade ice cream turned with hand power! We kids would beg to have our turn to get that delicious dessert frozen sooner. Hand picked blackberries, strawberries, & peaches would be plopped on top of the small mountains of icy cream. Old folks sharing with youngsters not just the food, but the love, the stories of their history, the times we youngsters who are the "old folks" now look back fondly on as our "comforting" memories. No matter where we are in this big world, there is that tie that pulls us back to each other. Ah yes, memories! (Jean Merriott 4:43pm November 6, 2010)
My favorite place was at my grandmother's. (April Renn 6:12pm November 6, 2010)
Our family gathers at our house for Thanksgiving, but, sad to say, the number has shrunk through the years instead of grown. But we have both turkey and ham and all the trimmings and truly enjoy being together. Maybe memories of those no longer with us make us more appreciate those who remain. After eating Thanksgiving dinner, the young males in the family always decorate our yard for Christmas and they go all out. They place lights in the trees, flower beds and all over the place. We get lots of compliments on their work. It really gets us all into the Holiday spirit. Those lights burn nightly until New Year's night. (Gladys Paradowski 7:05pm November 6, 2010)
My favorite place has always been my Grandmothers and the town she lives in. She used to live over the newspaper my grandmother owned and operated that faced downtown. Their backyard was huge and after he died she moved down stairs, bulding a little house on the land filling the area and facing the other best part about where they lived and how the lake! I still go there and walk down town and go check out the new businesses or old ones and take lots of pictures of the lake at sunrise and sunset. My grandmtoher is still living at 95 and still working and still loves to cook. She still has pretty large family dinners. She just starts cooking in advance and freezes things to take out to heat up when she has family mmembers coming and cooks some of it that day. She can't have the entire family there we are too numerous and also spread out more. I took friends for years up north to Grandmas and to Lakeview! Grandma's cooking is always special, she makes some fabulous things that I always look forward too. I don't know what I'll do when she is gone. (Brenda Rupp 7:54pm November 6, 2010)
We would visit my husband's grandmother. She was "old-world" Polish and would start to feed you as soon as you arrived. She lived right on Lake Huron - we would eat on her porch and watch the hummingbirds. All the relatives gathered there. We went any holiday we could! (Winnie Kowalski 8:17pm November 6, 2010)
I liked going to my Aunt's house - they always had the case of large bottles of soda delivered & would get Black Cherry soda just for me. They also had enough room at the table for everyone so we didn't have to sit at the "kiddie table". (Diane Sallans 8:18pm November 6, 2010)
I LOVE grandmas house too. i hope this is like your last book too good to put down (Debbi Shaw 9:12pm November 6, 2010)
Unfortunately, I am unable to share my favorite childhood places with my family now. As I don't live where I grew up. But what I do share is my cooking heritage. All the yummy foods that were prepared, especially around each holiday. Those are memories that will never fade. (Cynthia Netherton 10:08pm November 6, 2010)
The only favorite places I had with family was at my Grandmother's house when I was a child. She had 14 children, so it was quite a get-together there for Holidays!! After my Grandparents passed away, my Aunt Bernice took over, and we had get-togethers quite a few times over the years- not just Holidays. She had a big house on a large piece of land to hold all of the relatives. We had baseball games on her front lawn, and the kids had plenty of room to run down to the ravine below. Your article brought back wonderful memories. I would have loved to live in your house, by the way. Lavender is my favorite color!! lol The house does sound charming, though. Thank you for your memories, as well as your books!! (Peggy Roberson 10:14pm November 6, 2010)
I loved going to my grandparents' house when I was little. They lived in Alabama, so I only got to see them twice a year. Most of my relatives lived in that area, so it was great visiting with everyone. (Ginger Hinson 11:01pm November 6, 2010)
For the last couple of years, I've been spending Labor Day with my cousin and her family (two kids) at my favorite beach. We'd grill up some oysters, steaks and salmon while the kid splay in the sand. I hope the kids will remember their beach day out there when they grow up. (S Tieh 12:00pm November 7, 2010)
We grew up in a pretty small house and we would all be stuffed around the kitchen table for holidays but it was cozy and comfortable. (Maureen Emmons 6:39am November 7, 2010)
My mom's from a big family. So at holidays we would be at my grandmother's really small house with 18 or more family members. But it was always fun to be surrounded by so much family. (Pam Howell 9:49am November 7, 2010)
All of our special moments have been spent at home or another family members home. I remember the dessert and side dishes as being my favorite at every single event. (Leni Kaye 12:40pm November 7, 2010)
I never cared which grandparents house we went to; both had great libraries and both were great cooks who didn't want a lot of help in the kitchen. Best of all, I never had to wash the 'good dishes'! I miss them, of course, but I miss their libraries more! Fortunately, they were all voracious readers who demanded that we follow in their footsteps!! Excellent parenting! (Susan Driskill 12:59pm November 7, 2010)
My grandparents lived right up the street from me when I was little. I can remember hearing the Ice Cream Man's bell and I would run, along with all the other kids in the neighborhood, to their house and my grandmother would give everyone a dime, which was enough for a small cone in those days. (Mary Lynn Hayes 1:26pm November 7, 2010)
Every year when I was growing up we would take turns having Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners with my grandparents. I have many happy memories. (Cheryl Lynne 2:11pm November 7, 2010)
This sounds really good, I would love to read it! (Gail Hurt 4:16pm November 7, 2010)
MY Dad and Mom built their own summer place where us kids spent all our summers and where our children spent quite a few of theirs; my parents got older and had to sell the house and since none of us could afford it , it went to strangers. But to this day we all remember their summer home and the fun, the love and the family we are. (Diane Sadler 6:41pm November 7, 2010)
hi well thanks giving and xmas was at greandma she had the biggerst place and then she would could all week before and then we had to help it was fun and then we have up to and sometime over 100 people caome and that all family (Desiree Reilly 8:15pm November 7, 2010)
I love that house. It is beautiful.
I am starting to create my own traditions with the holidays now that my stepdaughter and her family live only five doors away. We have a great time whenever we get together. (Dianne Barskey 8:36pm November 7, 2010)
My memories are more of people than places, they are of large family get togethers. (Sue Ahn 11:10pm November 7, 2010)
One of my favorite memory as a child is of taking the bus from my little village to the city 3 miles away to visit my Gramma Bingham and great-grandmother Dunn.
They had a small second floor apartment and I spent many hours there with my Gramma teaching me to play go fish and having the best cookies of my life that had been cooked in an old coal stove.
I feel sorry for the children today that they can't enjoy some of the simple pleasures that we did growing up. (Jeanne Miro 10:33am November 9, 2010)