LESSONS I LEARNED FROM MY VILLAINS by Beverly Eikli

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This post is part of a virtual book tour organized by Goddess Fish Promotions. Beverley will be awarding an e-copy of her backlist – Lady Sarah’s Redemption or Lady Farquhar’s Butterfly at each stop plus one randomly drawn commenter during the tour will be awarded a $25 Amazon Gift card. Click on the tour banner above to see the other stops on the tour.

Lessons I learned from my Villains
By Beverley Eikli
A truly villainous villain is the icing on the cake when I’m in the mood to read “that” kind of story. Of course I love to see virtue triumph over evil, but only after I’ve been taken on a page-turning roller-coaster ride through the story’s seamier side before bursting out into the sunshine to enjoy the final ‘Aaaw’ Happy Ever After.

So, now that you know my position regarding villains, I’d like to say hello, everyone, and thank you Long and Short Reviews for having me here, today. I write Historical Romantic Intrigues as Beverley Eikli and erotic Romance as Beverley Oakley and my seven books are published by a variety of publishers. Most contain a villain or two and either a mystery to solve or a rollicking adventure that sweeps up the heroine. It’s really only the heat level that distinguishes my Oakley and Eikli books from each other.

Today I’d like to talk about my Regency Romantic Intrigue, A Little Deception. It was shortlisted for a 2011 Australian Romance Readers Award, however, after I got my rights back a short while ago I rewrote and edited it. I even changed the ending so the villain gets what she really deserves.

Talking of being shortlisted, to my utter delight, I woke up on Friday to the news that my raunchy Regency Romp, Rake’s Honour (under my Beverley Oakley name) has been shortlisted for a 2012 Australian Romance Readers’ Award in the historical section. I have no expectation of winning. It’s enough to be named up there with some of my favourite authors like Anna Campbell, Sophia James, Lucinda Brant and Alison Stuart.

So, that’s two years running I’ve been shortlisted with two very different books – except that both have utterly repugnant villains.

In Rake’s Honour it’s Lord Slyther, the foul-breathed, wart-covered and gout-ridden suitor of my feisty heroine, Fanny. Believe me, the prospect of a lifetime of Lord Slyther is a strong incentive for Fanny to take risks a carefully nurtured heroine wouldn’t normally consider.

In A Little Deception my villain is Helena, the exquisitely beautiful, vengeful sister-in-law of my proud and determined heroine, Rose. Helena has, both literally and metaphorically, an axe to grind as she rails over the unfairness of life. She’s married to Rose’s brother who’s a complete milksop – albeit besotted – so when Helena sees Rose achieve happiness after accidentally tricking the rakish hero, Lord Rampton, into marriage while pretending to be her married sister-in-law, Helena, the fur flies.

Rose’s charade is completely justified since Helena gambled away the family fortune and was stoned on opium the night she was supposed to petition gorgeous Lord Rampton for more time to pay the debt. So when Rampton decides to rescue the inevitably bored and unsatisfied ‘Lady’ Rampton (who, of course, is actually virginal Miss Rose Chesterfield) with some artful seduction, he gets more than he bargained for.

Anyway, let’s just say that Helena is less than delighted at the turn of affairs. Especially after Lord Rampton turns out to be even more besotted with his new bride than Charles is with Helena. This is when Helena really steps into the role of villainess as she devises ever more ingenious – and totally ruthless – ways of blackening Rose’s name in the eyes of her husband and the world.

I think the biggest lesson my villains have taught me is that life’s too short to not experience the fun of creating at least one dastardly villain in one’s literary history.

Of course, just as every romance has to have a Happy Ever After, there must be a balance between good and evil. Redemption is a theme that runs through many of my books but usually it’s the redemption of the hero or heroine rather than the villain.

I know it can sometimes appear that I’m more in love with my villains than my hero or heroine but by the end of my story everyone gets exactly what they deserve. I’ve been dishing out justice since I was a gap-toothed seven-year-old entertaining my younger sisters with readings from The School for Witches, the first book I ever penned. No television at our beach cottage in South Australia meant the long summer holidays were spent reading and playing games of Beetle.

I guess you could say A Little Deception is a legacy of those happy, long-ago times.

Thank you for dropping by. If you have a favourite villain in literature, I’d love to hear who, and why.

About the Author:1_16 Beverley Eikli and her Rhodesian Ridgeback, HomerBeverley Oakley wrote her first romance when she was seventeen. However, drowning the heroine on the last page (p550!) was, she discovered, not in the spirit of the genre so her romance-writing career ground to a halt and she became a journalist.

After throwing in her secure job on South Australia’s metropolitan daily The Advertiser to manage a luxury safari lodge in the Okavango Delta, in Botswana, Beverley discovered a new world of romance and adventure in a thatched cottage in the middle of a mopane forest with the handsome Norwegian bush pilot she met around a camp fire.

Eighteen years later, after exploring the world in the back of Cessna 404s and CASA 212s as an airborne geophysical survey operator during low-level sorties over the French Guyanese jungle and Greenland’s ice cap, Beverley is back in Australia living a more conventional life with her husband and two daughters in a pretty country town an hour north of Melbourne. She writes Regency Historical Intrigue as Beverley Eikli and erotic historicals as Beverley Oakley.

Buy A Little Deception – http://www.amazon.com/A-Little-Deception-ebook/dp/B009HKKCKM/ref=tmm_kin_title_0

Website: http://www.beverleyoakley.com/Beverley_Oakley/Welcome.html

Amazon Profile: http://www.amazon.com/Beverley-Eikli/e/B0034Q44E0/ref=ntt_athr_dp_pel_1

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/beverley.eikli

Twitter: @BeverleyOakley.com

1_16 Cover_A Little Deception

A one-night charade to save the family sugar plantation wins loyal and determined Rose Chesterfield more than she bargained for – marriage to the deliciously notorious rake, Viscount Rampton.

“A love match!” proclaims London’s catch of the season who happily admits he has been hoist on his own petard.

But when his new wife is implicated in the theft of several diamond necklaces he wonders if her deception goes beyond trapping him into marriage. Is she the innocent she claims, or a scheming fortune hunter with a penchant for money, mischief and men?

Comments

  1. Thank you for hosting today.

  2. Jane Bandy says:

    Your villains sound awful — especially Lord Slyther (I’m guessing you meant for us to think of snakes?). Love the ideas behind your books.

    jbandy8233 AT gmail DOT com

  3. What a descriptive name for Lord Slyther, his name sounds so sinister. Hmm, about your question about villians. Off the top of my head, it would be the Phantom from the Phantom of the Opera. Although he did kill people and was controlling, there is something so sad and lonely about him.
    strive4bst(At) yahoo(Dot) com

  4. Hi Beverley,
    I love your villians, almost as much as your hero’s – the character you just love to hate! And the perfect counterfoil to your delicious hero’s… thanks for all the books – Eikli and Oakley titles – you bring a lot of joy to my world – there’s nothing I like better than coming home from a day at work, pouring a glass of wind and curling into a comfy chair with one of your books!

  5. Hm, favorite villain in literature, well the classical one would be Richard the 3rd. Goethe’s Mephisto, he is evil, he is the devil, but he is a very complex character and is one of the first characters to show that a villain can com in any form.

    galaschick78 at gmail dot com

  6. This was a lovely post. I think we readers sometimes take villains for granted — this made me realize that the same amount of thought and process goes into their creation.

    Favorite villain? I’ve always had a soft spot for the Sheriff of Nottingham, when Alan Rickman played him. ^_^

    In recent times, Tom Hiddleston’s Loki.

  7. So Gala, you’re fond of Richard the 3rd and Goethe’s Mephisto; Jess, you like Phantom of the Opera, and Tin, your favourite is The Sheriff of Nottingham…. those are certainly very different villains with very different character traits.

    Actually, I think I’d have a soft spot for any villain played by Alan Rickman. Darling Alan stole my heart in Sense & Sensibility and he wasn’t playing either the hero or the villain.

    Jess and Jane, I’m glad you liked Lord Slyther’s name. Yes, it was supposed to sound like a snake:)

    Thanks for all your comments, and, Nina, what a sweet and heartwarming comment about the glass of red wine going well with reading my books. Thank you.

  8. Nice post. Don’t have a favorite villain.

    bn100candg(at)hotmail(dot)com

  9. Mary Preston says:

    A villainous villain – the best kind. A great villain can take the story to the next level I always think.

    I don’t know that I have an absolute favorite.

    marypres(AT)gmail(DOT)com

  10. laurie goudge says:

    i like the looks of your writing. i will have to pick up the book as soon as i get a job

    parisfan_ca@yahoo.com

  11. Oh, I totaly agree on the Sheriff of Nottingham played by Alan Rickman 🙂

    shadowrunner1987 AT gmail DOT com

  12. I think it’s great that you spent the holidays reading and taught your kids the same, a lot of kids prefer television to reading. I’ve recently read the comment on a canceled TV series that was also a book series, and people were wondering how they will now know the ending. Reading books was mentioned but mostly sounded like it would be the very last resort, that’s sad.

    lennascloud(at)gmail(dot)com

  13. Lovelly cover, you are lucky to have such a great cover artist.

    emiliana25(at)web(dot)de

  14. Thanks, Laurie,

    And Lena, I totally agree. That’s sad to think people wouldn’t even consider reading a book if watching the television series was easier.

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