The adage about nice guys finishing last seems to ring true in the romance genre. Everywhere you turn in romance you are stumbling over a bad boy hero, or Mr. Tall, Dark and Handsome brooding in the corner. Where have all the nice guys gone? The kind of man who has nice table manners, opens the door for you, treats you (and everyone else) with respect and kindness and is just generally a great guy. With the holiday season upon us, it seems imperative that we can hunt down some heroes we can happily introduce to the folks. So, I have rounded up all my favourite books where finally the good guy got the girl.
Ford Hartigan from Butterface by Avery Flynn
“He kissed her like a man who believed that if he did it right, she’d forget that anyone had ever called her awful names or made her feel like she wasn’t everything a man could want.” ~ From Butterface by Avery Flynn
This book has become a new obsession of mine, it falls into two troupes I really love: Plain Jane heroines and nice-guy heroes. Ford Hartigan is a cop and a consummate rule follower, making him the black sheep in the crazy Hartigan clan. I loved Ford, despite being in a tricky situation he always tried to do the right thing. I also love to see the straitlaced buttoned up ones fall; he may be a nice young man in public, but behind bedroom doors he knows how to rock it.
Gorrard from Alien Gift by Tracy Lauren
Admittedly, it might be awkward around the dinner table if you bring Gorrard home with you. His grey skin and horns may give him away as an alien. But if you look past appearances you’re left with a grizzled warrior with a heart of marshmallow. Gorrard has spent most his life looking for his lost people and now that he has found a semblance of home, he longs for a family of his own. So I highly recommend you open your heart and your homes to Gorrard this holiday season as he finally finds the love he deserves.
Colin Bridgerton from Romancing Mr Bridgerton by Julia Quinn
“You are a terrible liar, did you know that?”
He straightened, tugging slightly at his waistcoat as he lifted his chin. “Actually, I’m an excellent liar. But what I’m really good at is appearing appropriately sheepish and adorable after I’m caught.”
What, Penelope wondered, was she meant to say to that? Because surely there was no one more adorably sheepish (sheepishly adorable?) than Colin Bridgerton with his hands clasped behind his back, his eyes flitting along the ceiling, and his lips puckered into an innocent whistle. ~ From Romancing Mr Bridgerton by Julia Quinn
Historical romance is jam packed with rakes, libertines and underground kingpins it seems. But Julia Quinn is, almost single handed, putting the limelight on nice guy historical romance heroes. Her romances, which are rife with humour, warmth and fun are perfect to showcase heroes with kind hearts and impeccable manners. Which brings me to Colin Bridgerton. Who, for me, is one of the best historical romance heroes, nice guy or not, that I have read. I would gladly marry him on the spot and drag him home to meet the family.
Matt McKinney from Worth the Fall by Claudia Connor
“He knew without a doubt, he was holding his heart and soul in his arms. And he never wanted to let her go.” ~ From Worth the Fall by Claudia Connor
If there’s one author who does a fantastic job at writing nice guy heroes to swoon over, it’s Claudia Connor. However, I didn’t want to populate this article with just Connor books, so I picked my favourite Worth the Fall. It’s not every guy that would not only fall in love with a pregnant widowed mum with 4 kids but open his heart to the kids as well. But Matt is that guy. From page 1 this book grabs you by the heart and tap dances along the strings. It’s such a sweet story where both the hero and heroine get the good person they deserve.
Adeptus Exemptus Raphael Winter from the Lazy Girl’s Guide to Magic series by Helen Harper
“You should count yourself lucky,’ she grinned. ‘I’m far too much like hard work.”
It was on the tip of Winter’s tongue to tell her that she should know by now that he liked hard work ~ From Slouch Witch by Helen Harper
If your family is anything like mine, then there’s one very important factor about a potential love interest. It’s far more important than looks, how many abs you can count or a fantastic sense of humour, it’s his job. His occupation. His ability to be a provider. Now, my family aren’t snobs, they don’t care what job, just that there is one. So, it’s fair to say that my family would love Adeptus Exemptus Raphael Winter. Not only is he gainfully employed with the Order of Magical Enlightenment, he’s also sort after and well respected. He might be a little uptight…and yes, his sense of humour is very subtle. Luckily, Ivy Wilde his opposite in almost every way is there to lighten things up and remind him to have fun.
William Monroe from The Varlet and the Voyeur by Penny Reid and L.H. Cosway
“Who’s to say what’s normal?” ~ From The Varlet and the Voyeur by Penny Reid and L.H. Cosway
Sports romances aren’t known for being packed with good guy heroes, but Penny Reid and L.H. Cosway break the mold with The Varlet and the Voyeur. William Monroe is a nice guy, he doesn’t get into trouble, doesn’t smoke, do drugs or drink. He doesn’t whore around with different women…so if you ignore that massive sex scandal he’s been thrown into, he would be the perfect guy to come and meet mum and dad.