Monday, July 27, 2015

Male on Monday - Carole Mortimer's Heroes

Pink Heart Society editor, Ali Williams, is celebrating Carole Mortimer's RWA Lifetime Achievement Award, by taking a look back at some of her heroes.

My introduction to Mills & Boon was completely accidental.

My Italian grandmother had a number of romance novels- each one more steamy than the next - on a shelf in my mother's old bedroom.  I devoured them all and was disappointed when they suddenly disappeared one day (I suspect my mum found out and spirited them away).

But amongst them was The Mills & Boon 1998 Christmas Collection and the very first book I read in that collection, and therefore my very first Mill & Boon book, was Carole Mortimer's Married by Christmas.

This was my first introduction to the alpha hero: Patrick Devlin was devilishly handsome, commanding and smouldered every which way.  Needless to say, I was hooked.  

I've never looked back and I have Carole Mortimer to blame/thank for the numerous M&B books that have encroached upon my bookshelves over the years.  Her award is more than deserved, and we're delighted to congratulate her and all the RWA finalists and winners at the Pink Heart Society.

Now excuse me whilst I swoon over some of my favourite Mortimer alpha heroes...

Love has nothing to do with age limits.

Leigh knew that Piers Sinclair was old enough to be her father. In fact, he was her boyfriend Gavin's father. But that didn't stop her from falling in love with him. 

No woman could resist his powerful attraction. Piers was sophisticated, experienced, and dangerously exciting. His very presence unsettled Leigh. 

She knew she should try to avoid him; she knew she had to forget him. But it just wasn't possible. Especially when Gavin decided to play matchmaker!

To research her book, author Cat Howard had chased down Caleb Steele, the arrogant owner of a film studio. But when she woke up in his bed one morning, unable to remember how she'd got there, she was horrified! 

Her only love had died five years earlier, and she had never stopped missing him. Now she was torn between loyalty to the past and a powerful attraction she could not deny. 

Cat's genuine innocence and fiery wit captivated Caleb and he was determined to win her. If only her memories would release her.

Diana had waited years to exact revenge against Reece Falcon, time only fueling her hatred. Finally her obsession was to be satisfied.

Reece Falcon's Achilles' heel was his son. Diana's elusiveness and cool beauty had quickly mesmerized the young man--much to his father's disgust. But when had the tables turned? When had Reece seduced Diana with his dark magnetism, weaving a dangerous spell around her emotions? And when had Diana crossed that fine line between hate...and love?

Everybody knows her as Jane Smith, a successful businesswoman. What they don't know is that Jane has also successfully distanced herself from her past.

Until she meets handsome American Gabriel Vaughan at a Christmas party. Gabe's determined to get close to her, seduce her and sooner or later he'll recognize a former society lady with a secret...

Logan McKenzie liked his life exactly how it was:  —with no surprises, and without a wife.

Then Logan learned his mother was about to marry for the third time, and that Darcy, his very pretty stepsister-to-be, was in danger of being hurt by that marriage. 

So he found himself getting involved—not only in trying to prevent the forthcoming nuptials, but with Darcy herself...and his carefully controlled existence was turned upside down!

The Tycoon's Mistress (The Calendar Brides Series), 2008

His Cinderella Mistress - Millionaire lawyer Max Golding wants to play Prince Charming to January’s Cinderella, but she suspects he wants the family’s land – and how better to get it than by melting her resistance in the warmth of his bed?

The Unwilling Mistress - From their first fiery meeting Will Davenport’s hooked on March. He wants her and will do anything to make her his. But, March isn’t willing to sleep with the enemy – even if, secretly, he’s captured her heart…

The Deserving Mistress - May is determined that no one shall take her home and her livelihood! Especially not arrogant property tycoon Jude Marshall! May has always been overlooked in the past – and now sexy, charming Jude is out to wine and dine her, how can she resist?

The Virgin Secretary's Impossible Boss (Six Nations, Rugby Billionaires Series), 2009

Linus Harrison's masculinity is a little too much for his sensible, bespectacled assistant, Andrea. He makes her heart beat like crazy! And the last thing Andi expects is to have to spend a weekend alone with her wild, irrepressible boss....

Billionaire Linus loves a challenge and relishes his chance to undo Miss Prim and Proper's buttoned-up exterior. It only takes one snowbound Scottish night to ignite the flames of the devilishly handsome businessman's desire. With sparks flying, how can Andi resist?

Genevieve Forster, widowed Duchess of Woollerton, knows only too well the need for bravado. After a miserable marriage she's wary, but deep down yearns to pursue temptation….

With his air of danger and elusiveness it's little wonder that Lord Benedict Lucas is known to his close friends and enemies alike simply as Lucifer.Shocking the straitlaced Ton holds no fear for him. And the pleasure will be all his as he skillfully uncovers Genevieve's outrageous side!

Gabriel D'Angelo: renowned and ruthless...

Artist Bryn Jones never forgave Gabriel for sending her father to prison, tearing her family apart and breaking her heart in the process. But she has forged herself a new identity away from the scandal and disgrace...until she wins the chance to exhibit at the D'Angelos' prestigious London gallery! 

International tycoon Gabriel D'Angelo is haunted by the unforgiving eyes that once stared at him across a crowded courtroom. Now the enticing Bryn is back, and this time she'll play by his rules to get what she wants...and Gabriel's determined that this bargain will be mutually pleasurable!

Who: Griffin Stone, tenth Duke of Rotherham.

What: A dishevelled woman who is nearly trampled by his carriage horses.

When: Late one summer night, while the Duke is in pursuit of would-be assassins.

Why: When the mysterious beauty’s identity is revealed as Lady Beatrix Stanton, Griffin realises it’s she who holds the key to everything. Bea’s memory must be unlocked, but with every second in her presence inflaming Griffin’s desire, keeping his mind on the task ahead proves nigh on impossible!

Who's your favourite Carole Mortimer hero?  And is there an author who you've got to thank for your romance reading habit?  Join the discussion in the comments!

Ali Williams grew up in Croydon and spent her teenage years in a convent girls’ school. She then fled to university where she discovered champagne cocktails, a capella singing and erotica.

These days she blogs about perceptions of romance, chick lit and women in society and spends the rest of her time promoting #StrongRomanceHeroines on Twitter, and cracking on with her first novel, Breakfast in Tunford.

Editor for the Pink Heart Society, guest blogger for Mills & Boon and Harper Impulse, and occasional columnist for For Books' Sake, she defies you to slam romance novels within her hearing!


  1. I love Carole Mortimer. I've been reading her books since the 80s and have a massive collection of her titles. The Calendar Brides is my favourite of hers, but I always pick her books up as soon as they hit the shelves.

    Congrats, Carole - and here's to 200 more books!

  2. Carole Mortimer was my first M&B book too. A Christmas Affair with Dominic Reynolds. Loved it and then I was hooked. My mum used to get a load of them from the library and I would read them too.

  3. Wow! So lovely to see this post, thank you so much! Loved reading Carole Mortimer as a teen. I think my favorites were The Passionate Winter and Savage Interlude, getting goosebumps just thinking about the awesome characters she wrote, thanks once again..