Before I begin writing a book, I search for images for my characters. I'm certainly not alone in this or the Pink Heart Society's Male on Monday might not exist! My current book, A Reputation for Notoriety, book 1 in The Masquerade Club series, was no exception. The hero of A Reputation for Notoriety is John "Rhys" Rhysdale, a man who survived and prospered by wits, luck, and skill at cards. Rhys now runs a gaming house in London in 1819. I found the perfect image for Rhys on one of my favorite sites, the Storm Modeling Agency site. The model had dark hair (almost all my heroes have dark hair!), dark brown eyes, a strong brow, sensitive mouth, and a wounded, guarded expression on his face. I can't show you the image because of copyright and I can't link to it, because I can't find him on the Storm site anymore. But I'm thrilled to say that the man on the cover of A Reputation for Notoriety looks almost exactly like him. The Rhys of my imagination had dark, unruly hair, though, hair that looked as if the heroine had just run her hands through it. So imagine the cover model's hair has just been mussed, perhaps from rising from bed, and you have the perfect image of Rhys. This story is filled with men! Rhys, who is a bastard son rejected by his father and left to fend for himself at an early age, has two half-brothers, the legitimate sons. So I had to search for images for these fellows. I wanted them to look like brothers--and to look like Rhys.
A Reputation for Notoriety
Raising the stakes… As the unacknowledged son of the lecherous Lord Westleigh, John "Rhys" Rhysdale was forced to earn a crust gambling on the streets. Now he owns the most thrilling new gaming establishment in London. Witnessing polite society's debauchery and excess every night, Rhys prefers to live on its fringes, but a mysterious masked lady tempts him into the throng. Lady Celia Gale, known only as Madame Fortune, matches Rhys card for card and kiss for stolen kiss. But the stakes are raised when Rhys discovers she's from the very world he despises.… The Masquerade Club: Identities concealed; desires revealed.
You can read more about Diane Gaston and her books on her website