You might think because I write A Cheese Shop Mystery that
I'm going to share my delicious research with you. Yes, I went from shop to
shop, tasting extraordinarily sexy cheeses with sensual names like Tuscan
Tartufo, Roaring Forties Blue, Triple Cream Brie, and Fromage d'Affinois.Â But
I'm not going to share that experience because I want you to go to cheese shops
and taste that lusciousness for yourselves. Go to the really good shops where
the cheese mongers are willing to share a sliver of this and that to entice you.
Savor the moment.
Instead, today, I want to talk about men. Especially leading men. When I started
crafting the first in the Cheese Shop Mystery series,
I had to come up with a leading man for my protagonist, a cheese shop owner in a
small town. Now, in a mystery, this man has to be someone who can be with the
protagonist for a number of books. Maybe twelve. Maybe more. Unlike in a
romance, the pair doesn't necessarily have to get married. Sometimes the act of
getting married can kill the series. But, in my fictional world, the man had to
be good and had to be worthy of my protagonist. I needed him to be romantic. He
had to lust for her. And she had to tingle when he touched her.
I set these requirements because, being a major movie buff all my life, I
watched romantic comedies with regularity. I craved them. Romancing the
Stone, While You Were Sleeping, It Happened One Night. And I
watched romances like Dr. Zhivago, Gone with the Wind, and romantic
suspense films like Charade and The Thomas Crown Affair and even
Speed. I LOVED, LOVED, LOVED women lusting after men. I enjoyed their
verbal sparring. But the heroes needed to be strong. Brave. Smart. I wouldn't
let my protagonist fall for any half-baked Adonis that couldn't add two plus
two. If the guy could dance, even better.
So here were my initials choices for Jordan, the cheese monger. Hugh Jackman and
Harrison Ford (the young HF when he was Indiana Jones). George Clooney got a
nod. So did Daniel Craig. But Hugh won. Why? He's virile, charming, has that
incredible accent, and, oh, did I mention he not only dances, but he can sing.
Yipes! Heart be still.
I wanted Charlotte to fall in love with a man of mystery. I wanted her to
question whether she was making the right decision. If she knew too much about
him at the top—you know the kind I mean; the guy that tells you his life
story on the first date?—he wasn't the guy. Charlotte and Jordan met in a
cooking class. How sexy is that? She lusted for him the instant she set eyes on
him, which meant she knew, at the very pit of her being, that he was the one.
So I am asking you, do you want the man of your dreams to be mysterious? Should
he be successful? Adventuresome? Should he be a reader or a mover and a shaker?
Can he cook? Can he dance? No matter what, he would risk everything to save you
and you would do the same for him, right?
Quick, off the top of your head, who are your three favorite leading men?
Out July 2, 2013: FINAL SENTENCE, the
first in A Cookbook Nook Mystery series. In need of a change, Jenna Hart leaves
the high-pressure world of advertising to help her aunt open a culinary bookshop
and cafĂ©. Back in Crystal Cove, California, Jenna has all the right ingredients
for a fresh start—until someone adds a dash of murder.
Recipes: Each of the Cookbook Nook Mysteries has recipes included. To get
more of my recipes, sign up for my newsletter, enter contests, or learn about
the books, visit my
Contest watch: Be sure to watch for my contest giveaways on Fresh
Fiction. And sign up for my
newsletter for future contests.
To read an excerpt from FINAL SENTENCE, click here
Praise for FINAL
"There's a feisty new amateur sleuth in town and her name is Jenna Hart. With a
bodacious cast of characters, a wrenching murder, and a collection of cookbooks
to die for, Daryl Wood Gerber's Final Sentence was a page turning puzzler of a
mystery that I could not put down." ~Jenn McKinlay, NYT bestselling author
Cupcake Mysteries and Library Lovers Mysteries
"Murder, revenge, and secrets. The first in Daryl Wood Gerber's COOKBOOK NOOK
MYSTERY series, FINAL SENTENCE, is a real page-turner. With a tasty mix of
characters, the author smartly blends crime, recipes, and an array of cookbooks
that all should covet in a witty, well-plotted whodunit." ~ Kate Carlisle, NYT
Bestelling author Bibliophile Mysteries
8 comments posted.
I would have to pick Robert Downey Jr, Hugh Jackman, and Johnny Depp. That's thinking off the top of my head, as you said, and I'm just starting my first cup of coffee!! I can't wait to read your book!! It sounds great, and knowing the background makes me want it in my hands immediately even more!! The cover is so cute and colorful, and I'm sure it's going to do well!! Congratulations!!
(Peggy Roberson 8:20am July 3, 2013)
I wrote a cryptic cheeseboard puzzle some years ago, people had great fun trying to hunt down all the cheeses in it. Great idea for a series.
(Clare O'Beara 9:43am July 5, 2013)