The best kind of heroes (to me anyway) are the ones who’ve suffered. Those with pasts so horrible and sad that it shapes them into the flawed men we meet on the first page. I especially love the ones who started out with nothing, literally, and had to fight to survive against all odds.
My hero in Sinfully Summer, Enrique Castillo (or Ric for short), is the most tortured of all my heroes so far. His mother left him on the streets at an early age. He’s had to live through things most people couldn’t imagine in their worst nightmares, and he’s even had to bend the law at times in order to survive, but what didn’t kill him made him stronger. And also very closed off. Ric definitely has a special place in my heart and not just because of what he endured, but how that shaped the person he became.
Why do I do this to my characters? Because they have so much more to overcome to open their hearts to the heroine. Ric is exactly the kind of hero I love, because he needs saved from himself, but remains strong and in charge with solid morals and bucket loads of integrity.
Here are my all-time top three favourite tortured heroes.
Zsadist from Lover Awakened.
His past is brutal, and so is he when he’s first introduced in this series. With physical scars to make him look like a monster, and a history of terrible emotional abuse, I so wanted to be the one to save him. Bella, the heroine, sees through the mean exterior to the broken man beneath. When he allows her to get close, she brings out such a sweet, gentle side of him that made me swoon.
Sheikh Zahir from Hajar’s Hidden Legacy (actually I’d put most of Maisey Yates’ heroes here if I could!).
The scars he suffered externally as well as internally have left him broken. I so wanted to save the angry beast, luckily Princess Katherine is just what he needs to heal.
Ian from Because You Are Mine.
Oh his past broke my heart. I don’t want to say what happened for fear of spoiling the story for you as you don’t find out until late on in the book, but there were enough hints for me to know it was going to be awful (and it was!).
What kind of hero do you prefer? Also please feel free to leave recommendations. I love finding hidden gems.