Writer Wednesday: Guest Author Shiloh Walker, Excerpt and Giveaway!

From Thea:  today’s treat is brought to you by the extremely talented, and very kind author Shiloh Walker!  Shiloh, thank you so much for stopping by to visit!

Shiloh’s giveaway will run until 12 noon, MDT, Friday April 6th.  Details follow at the end of the post:

The Appeal of the Asshole Hero

Asshole?  You want me to like that asshole…

Yes.  Yes, I do.  By the end of the book.  😉

So here’s the deal.  I like to write screwed-up characters.  They are fun.  And they are fun to fix.

That’s part of the journey for me.  If they don’t have that many flaws, or if they are just searching for love, there’s not always enough of a story.

That doesn’t mean I haven’t done a few of those.  I have.  They’ve been fun and I liked the stories and I wrote them because the story came to me.

Usually, though, the stories that come to me have at least one character who is screwed-up six ways to Sunday.

Toronto was screwed-up.  He’s a werewolf who was found near death in an alley more than a century ago.  His skull was pretty much shattered and his memories are gone–he healed but he has no idea who he was and he’s spent quite a bit of his life trying to find those answers.  And he isn’t exactly nice with it.

Getting him to accept who he is?  That was a bit of a bumpy ride, but that’s the fun of it.  If he wasn’t so flawed, he wouldn’t be as much fun.  When they’re messed up, you get to fix them, right?

He’s not a lost cause, though.  He’s got a sense of honor.  He’s a wicked smartass and that just appeals to me.  He’s smart.  And although it takes him some time to work around to it, he’s able to admit it when he screws up. (Which is often).

Personally, I love a flawed, screwed-up hero.  They are some of the funnest to read…and write.  This guy was really fun to write.  Not only is he trying to come to grips with who he is, finally, I throw him into the mess of his life.

He’s got to stop a bounty hunter from killing somebody who really does need to die.  Not the job he’d ever want to have–if he had his way, he’d be killing the bastard himself and then having a barbecue with the remains.  But there are reasons…and complications galore.  Because this bounty hunter, Sylvia, is a woman who gets to him like nobody ever has.

It was fun messing things up for him and then watching him figure things out.  Watching him fix himself.

So that’s the appeal of the asshole hero.  The flawed ones.  The broken ones.

Toronto is the hero of my current release, Hunter’s Rise.  A small snippet.

Staring at her made the blood in his body hum. Hurt. A faint smile curved the lush pink of her mouth, left him wondering what she was thinking. Then somebody came tumbling out of the bar next to her, spilling bright lights of blue and red onto the sidewalk, and Toronto had a better idea.

As the rainbow of lights flickered off the blade she’d concealed in her left hand, he studied the crush of people around them. It wasn’t as crowded here as it was just a few streets over on Beale, but it was still crowded enough.

Not the ideal place for a fight. He’d done it before and managed to avoid human casualties, but he suspected that Sylvia James was a different breed from what he was used to. Ferals fought to live, so they could kill—by nature, most of them weren’t always clearheaded. Sylvia, like him, was a trained killer. She would be clearheaded. It would make a difference.

He hunted the ferals.

She hunted for money.

In the end, he’d win, because he was stronger.

But he didn’t want to have to fight her. He wanted to have sex with her—down and dirty sex, maybe up against a wall, in the light so he could watch her. Then on a bed, her body under his, or over . . . his hands tangled in that dark, silken hair.

“You know, most men would at least bother to introduce themselves before the guy starts picturing the woman naked,” she drawled, coming to a stop eighteen inches away.

Toronto smirked. “That’s bullshit. We see a woman, we frequently picture them naked. We mess with the names when we want to actually think about getting them in bed. Some of us, at least.” He skimmed a look over her body, taking in the sleek muscles, the powerhouse curves. Then he focused on her face again, smiled slowly. “So. What’s your name?”


Sadly, this will be the final book in the Hunters series, but it works wonderfully as a standalone…most of them do.  You can check out more about the series at my website.

Who are some of your favorite flawed heroes? TV/Movie wise, off the top of my head, I can think of Doc Holliday, Angel & Spike from Buffy.  Book-wise, Korvel from Lynn Viehl’s Nightborn, Duncan from her Stardoc series (SL Viehl).  And I do love Khalil…(hey, cool dude!)

Give me some of your favorite flawed heroes and I’ll pick one winner to win a GC from Amazon or Barnes & Noble, reader’s choice!

Shiloh Walker



41 Responses

  1. Patty says:

    I don’t know if many would consider him flawed, but Mel from Firefly. On the surface, a smuggler and a thief, but overall a good guy with a wicked sense of humor!

  2. Elizabeth M says:

    Z from the Black Dagger Brotherhood Books, followed closely by V;-)

  3. rosemary mallard says:

    Damian from Nalini Singh’s Archangel’s Blade. Sinfully seductive with a dose of chocolate thrown in!

  4. Jeannie Smith says:

    Zarek from Sherrilyn Kenyon’s “Dance with the Devil”. He was one scary, did not give a s*** hero, and I loved him!!

  5. Ebony Morton says:

    My favorite flawed hero is Lothaire . Hes funny, hot, and flawed. 🙂

  6. Yami says:

    TV.Movie wise, I do love Spike, his character stands out to me. Book wise, well there’s a few, they all have their flaws. I love Zarek form Sherrilyn Kenyon’s “Dance with the devil.” His attitude goes from being a jerk to caring about the heroine. Also Lora Leigh’s “Bengal’s Heart” Cabal doesn’t change his attitude till the end.


  7. Grace S says:

    Definitely Lucas Simone from Cynthia Eden’s Never Cry Wolf. We knew Lucas as the bad boy leader of the L.A. pack in previous novels but it wasn’t til he got his own book that we saw how completely screwed up he was.

    He was both physically and emotionally scarred by his past–wretched childhood in which he saw his father murdered in front of him then was forced into lone status before maturing and fighting for control of his own pack–from having half an ear to being hardened and distrustful of everyone, seeing the worst in everyone and sadly being right most of the time.

    He isn’t physically pretty but he’s pretty much a full on bad ass alpha male who has a snarl for everybody except for Sarah, the HEA for whom he is a pussycat. 🙂

  8. LynnL says:

    Well now that would currently be Dragos from Dragon Bound. He of the wicked temper and machete smile. And also Curran from Ilona Andrews’ Kate Daniels series.

    • Jess says:

      Oooooh LynnL nice ones 🙂 I loooove those two and they would be some definite currant faves of mine

      Do you love Raphael in Nalini Singh’s Guild Hunter series??? I love him as much as Curran and Dragos…

  9. Jess says:

    Zarek & Zhadist.

    Zarek in Dance with the Devil by Sherrilyn Kenyon
    Zsadist in Lover Awakened by JR Ward

    Both characters are physically scared and mentally traumatized from childhood atrocities. Both have grown into men that are rude, abrupt and in-your-face.

    Both are distrusted by their fellow brothers or hunters and they feel completely isolated. But as readers we get to see glimpses of pain and moments of kindness so that we can see they are good.

    Both are loyal to the core but dont trust themselves. when they find their females they dont trust their emotions or that anything nice can happen to them.

    I think the reason I adore both of them is that we got a teaser for a few books (actually I think they were 3 rd book in each series) so there was that build up of tension and as I said – we got to see those glimpses of pain and goodness.

    Female characters – Eve in JD Robb ‘in death series’

    TV Shows – Mulder in the Xfiles – haunted by his sister and obsessive.

    I am sad to see the end of the Hunter series Shiloh 🙁

  10. Fedora says:

    I think most of the memorable heroes are flawed–after all, someone who’s already perfect isn’t nearly as interesting, and it’s hard to relate to someone who doesn’t have any weaknesses! Since I just did a re-read, Sebastian Ballister of Loretta Chase’s Lord of Scoundrels comes to mind. The poor man has grown up with a tormented self-image, and it’s remarkable to see how that changes in how he’s reflected in Jess’s eyes 🙂

    Congratulations on Hunter’s Rise, Shiloh! Looking forward to catching up with this series!

  11. Viki S. says:

    I have two flawed book heroes that I just love to death. The first is my book boyfriend, Larissa Ione’s Wraith and next is Cynthia Eden’s Niol. Both were prime assholes at first but then redeemed themselves. I should also include Dragos :), he can be a real tool too.

  12. Hey everybody… thanks for all the feedback.

    Raphael and Curran, a couple more I adore. 🙂

  13. Danielle West says:

    Recently I have loved Lothaire as a flawed H. Thank you for posting about your asshole H 🙂

  14. Laurie says:

    Well, all mine have been mentioned, Zsadist, Zarek, Curran. But there is also Tegan from Midnight Breed. I also like Doc Holliday, hubby loves that movie.

  15. KayeT says:

    There are so many, but of course I love Khalil, he is so yummy. I also loved Zarek, and would love to read Spawn’s book by the same author. Dragos is another good one, and I’m glad to see there is another book coming out with their story again. And lastly, I love Ronan, from the book Bodyguard. He is such a sweetie!

  16. Froggy says:

    Greg House MD and Dexter from TV shows
    Eric Northman from Sookie Stackhouse series (love him)


  17. Sabrina says:

    I will echo a lot of the others and add Jagr from “Darkness Unleashed” by Alexandra Ivy.

  18. Brenda Hyde says:

    The first one that comes to mind is Z from Black Dagger Brotherhood– I see he was mentioned– damn, talk about flawed. Spike– another favorite.

    I don’t know if anyone remembers but the first season of Angel there was Doyle, the half demon who got the visions Angel needed to help people. He was SO flawed, but in the end he came through, and I still cry at that episode. My husband says I’ll never let it go. LOL Plus, he really was Irish, and sadly the actor died later, which made it even sadder.

    A perfect character with no flaws simply wouldn’t be interesting– thanks for reminding me of that!

  19. Alaina says:

    this is tough.. i love raphael from nalini singhs; angels…

  20. Phyllis M says:

    Well, I have another Z…I agree with Zadist, and Zarek, but I love Zane from Tina Folsom’s Scanguard Vampire Series. He is emotionally crippled and has physical scar from unspeakable horrors. He is reclusive and dangerous to even his brothers. Does not believe he is redeemable, nor worthy of a mate. OMG, I just LOVE him!!

  21. Phyllis M says:

    ***sigh*** forgot email…

  22. Diane says:

    Dmitri from Archangel’s Blade by Nalini Singh. I just want to wring his neck most times.

  23. Cathy M says:

    Great list so far. I would add Sherrilyn Kenyon’s, Archeron, Gabriel from Vampire Instinct, and Ben from Hostile Takeover, both by Joey W Hill.

    caity_mack@yahoo dot com

  24. gamistress66 says:

    there’s so many good flawed heroes out there, where to start 😉 Elizabeth Hoyt writes some wonderful ones, Alyson James Mackenie brothers all have issues, and Lauran Dohner’s hero in Redeeming Zorus was a total jerk bad guy in several of the prior books (he even managed to be a good hero while still maintain a bit of jerk to everyone other than his lady)

  25. Michelle K says:

    John from JR Ward Brotherhood

  26. A lot of these I’ve already read, but there are a few books I’m going to have to pick up, I think. Damaged people… FTW! I love them when they are messed up…

  27. Danielle E. says:

    There are so many good ones Raphael from Kate Daniels series and William from Bayou Moon.

  28. Pamk says:

    Ash, Wren and Zarek from Sherrilyn’s DH are very tormented heroes. I know you like tortured heroes but you put your heroines through it too. And I love it.
    Looking forward to this one.
    I beileve JR ward’s latest book is going to have her most tormented hero to date.

  29. bn100 says:

    I like Zsadist from Black Dagger Brotherhood and Ethan from If You Desire.

  30. JessS says:

    Definitely Angel and Spike, and someone said Mal from Firefly! And pretty much all the characters in the Downside Ghosts series by Stacia Kane, but I love them!


  31. Nyasha says:

    I like Edward from the Anita Blake series. He truly has some issues.

  32. Chelsea B. says:

    Z from the BDB, oh DEFINITELY Spike and Angel from Buffy, Damon and Stefan from The Vampire Diaries, Mr. Rochester from Jane Eyre…. Flawed characters for the WIN! 🙂

  33. I have to say Zsadist is by far my fav. But Angel and Spike come in a close second. There are a lot to choose from–and they all deserve to be named, but I’m at work right now so I am having a hard time coming up with more than those 3—–although Wrath might be one too—yeah definately Wrath….

  34. Fiona Druce says:

    Definitely a Zsadist fan, here. I also love, love, love Adam Black, Jericho Barrons and Ryodan from KMM’s Fever series. Ilium from Nalini Singh’s Guild Hunter Series is my fav 😀 Can’t wait for later this year when Guild Hunter series’ Jason gets his book. Talk about tortured. Literally, I think!

  35. Mary S. Clemens says:

    I agree with most people: Zarek, Zhadist, Wraith, Wrath, Ash, Lothaire, all favorites of mine. I would add Declan Chase from IAD and Layel from Gena Showalter’s Atlantis Series.


  36. Angela says:

    So many great ones listed already, but I would like to add Taylor Jones from The Departed by the lovely Shiloh Walker. He was such an ass from The Missing and I was so curious about him… he was still an ass in The Departed, but he got his stuff together in the end. I have a soft spot for him. : )