Olympic Men of Mystery
The Olympics may be over but dreaming about men in teenie bikinis lives on. Sure, we (USA women) cheered on our men in red, white and blue but what about the men from the other countries. You know who I’m talking about.
To keep the international spirit alive and in honor of the TMP release of the Foreign Affairs anthology, a few of the authors are here to share with us a sneak into the foreign men they loved to watch during the Olympics and what their characters might have looked like.
But that’s not all. One lucky person who leaves a comment will be entered to win a free e-copy of Foreign Affairs.
Type: Contemporary Romance Anthology
Publisher: Turquoise Morning Press
Everyone has a little spot in their heart for the wonderful, mysterious men of far away lands. Be it Italian or Greek, French or British, an accent and a different passport are a guarantee to make women swoon. If they’re sexy and sweet, all the better. That’s why we made an anthology dedicated to them. These six foreign men will certainly sweep more than the six women off their feet.
By Karen Booth
I fully admit to being one of those women who prefers the summer Olympics to the winter, if for nothing else than the chance to watch men’s swimming and diving. Yes, I enjoy the competition, but mostly I enjoy watching for the body-hugging swimsuits. Call me shallow.
My aim today was to write about hunky Olympians hailing from Italy, the home country of the hero in my story, Spark to Flame, in the new Foreign Affairs anthology. As it turns out, the most beguiling Italian from the 2012 games wasn’t a swimmer, but a boxer. Boxing? The horror! Those shorts they wear are so baggy, practically ill fitting. Alas, Clemente Russo was a compelling reason to watch a sport that takes place outside a pool.
Clemente (I have decided that he and I are on a first name basis) has those incredibly intense Italian eyes, the ones that suggest every sexy thing a man could do to you in a single glance. He has irresistible manly scruff along that dimpled square chin of his and a thick, touchable head of hair. His lips? The pout of those inviting lips? Wait. What was I talking about?
Clemente closely resembles my vision of Antonio, my to-die-for Italian artist in Spark to Flame. Clemente doesn’t tend to smile as much as Antonio does, but I’m sure that’s the tough-guy boxer persona. Surely he smiles like crazy when you get him alone. His hair is a bit lighter in color than Antonio’s, but the essence, that gorgeous Italian essence is all there.
You can learn more about Karen and her other books at karenbooth.net.
By Michelle Garren Flye
It seems appropriate that Foreign Affairs was published right smack in the middle of the Olympics this year, especially to me. The Olympics originated in Greece and so did Myron, the hero of Agapi Mou (translated, the title means “My Love”). Myron is from Greece, visiting a vineyard in eastern North Carolina on business. He’s always been friendly with the lovely Lisa, who spends her life growing the grapes Myron’s winery uses in their wines. However, when he finds her in a more introspective and lonely mood than usual, his natural compassion kicks in and he tries to cheer her up. In so doing, Myron realizes his attraction for Lisa goes much deeper than the friendly feelings he had always believed were the limit of what he felt for her.
I know. All that’s great, but what does he look like? Lisa thinks Myron is “sexy as a Greek god,” and I’m pretty sure she’s right. I’ve never been to Greece, but I’ve been fascinated by the country and the culture for a long time. This year, I had a great time watching the men of the Olympics and thinking about what their counterparts at the foot of Mount Olympus in ancient times might have looked like as well (many of them dressed in olive branches and fig leafs). Maybe Myron looks like Ilias Iliadis, who took the bronze medal in Judo for Greece. Or Ioannis Tamouridis (cycling). When it comes to Greek male athletes, can you go wrong? Don’t they all have that shine of Mount Olympus on them? Stefanos Paparounas…Vlasios Maras…Byron Kokkolanis…the list goes on.
Greek athletes are only a microcosm of what is really sexy about Greek men. I tried to pull a lot of the most favorable qualities together into Myron, and he wound up—in my imagination, at least—embodying everything that is beautiful, compassionate and sexy from a culture where such things have long been revered. What a man!
You can learn more about Michelle Garren Flye at http://michellegflye.com/.
By J.M. Kelley
I’d like to be able to peruse the Irish Olympic team and find a pretty face, (and there are plenty of excellent choices there) to represent Declan Healy, the Irish foreign hottie I created for the Foreign Affairs anthology. I really would, but Declan wouldn’t be an Olympic contender.
Siren Song is set in the 1950s, and Declan is a working stiff. A fisherman, to be precise. No javelin-throwing or hurdle-jumping for this guy. He would, however, be the loud one sitting in the pub with a frothy pint of beer, watching the games and shouting down anyone who dared oppose the representatives of his home country.
Declan would be a serious contender for gold if there was an event designed to test the bounds of love. Sophistication isn’t his strength, but this hottie has a huge heart, and would take on the gods of Mt. Olympus to defend the honor of his beloved Lorelei. And with a trouble-attracting gal like Miss Dupree in his life, that scenario isn’t as unlikely as you’d think….
J.M. Kelley is a native Pennsylvanian, and a sweet tea swilling Carolina-Girl-In-Training. Her debut novel, Drew in Blue, is available for Kindle, with trade paperback becoming available in October. Her second novel, Daddy’s Girl, will be released by Turquoise Morning Press in January of 2013. Her website and blog can be found at www.jmkelleywrites.com
By Karen Stivali
I confess. I didn’t watch the Olympics. It couldn’t be helped. We were away a lot, I am swamped with writing assignments and, frankly, I don’t tend to watch a lot of sports. For the sake of this post I did peruse some of the Olympic articles. I’ve always been fascinated by rowers. Maybe it’s because I lived in several towns where I got to watch the rowers practice. Or maybe it’s because they tend to be thin but have beautifully toned arms and legs. Then again maybe it’s just all that synchronized stroking that gets me mesmerized. In any case, I chose Sam Townsend, a member of Great Britain’s rowing team, to represent the yummy British guy in my short story in Foreign Affairs.
My story, All I Need, follows a couple on a journey through past events, culminating in their wedding day. The male main character, Daniel, is a sweet, charming, witty, dead-sexy Brit. In fact he’s so insanely likeable he stars in my next two full length novels, Meant To Be (coming out August 26 from Turquoise Morning Press) and Holding On (the sequel, coming out November 26).
Here’s a photo of the handsome Sam Townsend.
He shares Daniel’s height, head full of delightfully messy dark hair and sweet soulful eyes. I’m afraid that’s probably where the comparison ends. Mr. Townsend is clearly a world class athlete and Daniel doesn’t particularly excel at any sports. Unless you consider sex a sport, in which case Daniel is most definitely award winning in his performances.
For more information about Karen Stivali, visit her site at http://karenstivali.com.
**We’d love to know who caught your eye. Leave a comment below and you’re automatically entered to win! Contest is for 1 ecopy of the book open to anyone! Contest open until Sept 7, 2012 @ 11:59pm EST. Winner announced shortly afterward**