Redeeming a Villain
by Julia Latham

I have a secret: I love to redeem villains. I've done it three times now in my career writing as both Julia Latham and Gayle Callen, and it still makes me giggle.

Okay, I'm not taking a hardcore murderer and making him a hero, but Tom Bannaster made some big mistakes in my first book, THRILL OF THE KNIGHT. He started to learn the error of his ways in ONE KNIGHT ONLY, and now, in SECRETS OF THE KNIGHT, it's his turn to shine. (Don't worry, you don't need to have read the first two books to understand Tom)

Tom gets kidnapped in Chapter One and spends the first quarter of the book chained to the wall in a dungeon. He's being held by Diana Winslow, the first woman member of the League of the Blade, my mysterious band of knights who fight injustice. Years before in self-defense, she killed Tom's brother, and Tom was always under a cloud of suspicion as the man with the best motive. After all, his brother's death kept Tom from the priesthood and made him a viscount.

Diana thinks he's finally discovered the truth and is back for revenge. How can she believe that he's only there to court her sister? And then the League of the Blade gives her an assignment, and it's about Tom! Needless to say, Diana and Tom have a lot to learn about each other and spend much of the book in a cat and mouse game trying to figure everything out--not to mention trying to fight the incredible passion they feel from the beginning.

So, how should your man apologize to you--or do you wish you, too, had a handy dungeon?


Blogger Jenni said:

Gayle - I LOVE the way you redeem your villians. Some of my favorite heros from your books are those "redeemable" villians. You do it so well.

A handy dungeon sometimes might be nice...

11:25 AM  

Anonymous Julia Latham said:

Thanks, Jenni!

11:35 AM  

Blogger Holly Greenfield said:

I love that cover, Gayle! And I absolutely love 'bad guys gone good.' Something about them is even sexier than a regular hero. I look forward to reading Tom's story.

6:12 PM  

Anonymous Julia Latham said:

Thanks so much, Holly! Every time I write a villain, I find myself trying to come up with reasons why he did something bad. Then before I know it, I see his motivations, and I start wondering how to change his!

7:21 PM  

Blogger Carolynn said:

"Perfect" men may be nice in real life, but in fiction, men with flaws are much more attractive. Redeeming a bad boy is so much fun for the heroine, too. ;)

I've never read any of your knight books, Gayle, but the cover and description of this one sounds wonderful! I can't wait to read it. :)

8:40 PM  

Blogger Tracey Devlyn said:

Great blurb, Julia. Secrets of the Knight sounds like a good read. BTW, I didn't realize you and Gayle Callen are one in the same. Where the heck have I been? I love both of you, er, your writing, that is.

9:20 PM  

Anonymous Julia Latham said:

Hi Carolynn! Yep, I agree, perfect heroes on paper don't work. It makes for a deeper, more emotional story, if our guy has a lot to learn about himself.

Hi Tracey! Yep, I write under both names. It lets me write Victorians as Gayle, yet I can go back to medievals as Julia. I started in medievals, so I've really enjoyed being able to switch back and forth. Thanks for letting me know that you like both sides of my writing!

9:57 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Julia - You have an amazing imagination! I love that your characters challenge those around them. It makes it so much more fun to watch them be tamed! Kate G

9:21 AM  

Anonymous Julia Latham said:

Aw, thanks, Kate! I think imagination can really be expanded with practice, so I keep working on it. And redeeming villains gives me such a challenge!

1:44 PM  

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