It isn’t fair to look at paranormal fiction and what’s awesome about it without considering the heroes. Yes, the butt-kicking heroines are awesome – and I’m all for girl-power.
But the guys? Come on. Paranormal heroes put their non-supernatural counterparts to shame.
Here are my ten reasons paranormal fiction heroes rock:
- Power. Nothing says power like the ability to throw pianos across the room, or move faster than light. Paranormal heroes are usually the ultimate alphas. And these guys need to be strong if they’re going to be an equal partner to the butt-kicking heroines.
- Magical / supernatural abilities. This is what sets them apart from “normal” heroes. Perhaps it’s their species (vampire, demon, werewolf, etc). Or perhaps it’s an ability they’ve been born with (wizards, psychics, etc). These abilities both form and trap the hero, can be something they embrace or despise – but definitely not something they can ignore.
- Supernatural Sexual Abilities. Not all paranormal heroes possess these magical abilities to be the best lovers, but many do. Like vampires who’s bites bring erotic pleasure. Or extremely flexible spines and special, *ahem*, “appendages.” (Check out Cheryl Brooks’ “Cat Star Chronicles” if you don’t believe me. Very unique, lots of fun, very sexy.)
- Knight in Dented / Rusted Armor Tendencies. Many paranormal heroes also have a bit of the protector in them, whether they bond together to form societies and protect humanity (like J.R. Ward’s “Black Dagger Brotherhood”) or play the lone-wolf. These are the heroes who do the right thing even when no one is watching, and no one ever gives them credit. There’s something admirable and lovable in that.
- Ultimate Bad-Boy Fantasy. These heroes are bad-boys (i.e.: vampires DO bite and sometimes kill people, even if it was ‘just a phase’). They’re sexy with an edge of danger. The heroine risks her safety and her world stepping out with these guys, and often, there’s no going back.
- A Chance at Forever. Life is riddled with risk and danger, with death and aging. But some of these paranormal heroes offer a way out. Immortality. A way to escape daily life and see everything from a bigger perspective. They’re stronger, heal-faster, and aren’t as vulnerable to simple dangers as most of us – and our loves – are.
- Myth and Connection to History. So many of us live our lives barely knowing 6+ generations of family history. But these heroes are often connected to long, complicated, and well-remembered histories, myth, and legend. They’re a living, breathing piece of history – and so much sexier than a textbook.
- Dare to Fight Harder, Be More. These heroes are rarely satisfied with the mundane, or standing back from a fight. They dare those around them, and readers, to fight for what we believe in as strongly as they do. They force others to face the truth, even if it’s ugly, and use what power you have for good.
- Proof There’s Someone For Everyone. Sometimes it’s the “destined soul-mates” trope, sometimes it’s that these heroes – scarred, wounded inside and out, hidden in plain sight – these heroes could be out there, and who knows, maybe they’ll show up on your doorstep one day. Or the reason you haven’t met “the one” is because he’s actually a 500 year old vampire, and he’s in Italy this year. These heroes and their love stories suggest that no matter what you’ve done, where you’ve been, what you must overcome, you will find love, sometimes when you least expect it.
- Vulnerability and Humanity. It seems like a contradiction, but it’s actually the weakness, the flaws of these heroes, which form the cherry-on-top. While paranormal fiction heroes can be ultra-powerful, possibly immortal, deep down they have very human, and normal needs. They need love, hope, a sense of safety and home, gentleness to balance their power. Sometimes they find these things in their heroines, sometimes within themselves – and the ability to be strong enough to admit they aren’t all-powerful.
So, that’s why I love a good paranormal fiction hero. What about you?
What is unique and special about a paranormal fiction hero? Is there something “more” about them than other heroes? What are they capable of that non-paranormal heroes aren’t? Have I missed anything on my list?
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