Have you ever read a romance novel and thought that one (or more) of the secondary characters deserved his or her own book? I have. Regarding the medieval romances I’ve written, I felt this way about a handsome young knight named Dominic de Terre, whom I introduced to readers in A Knight’s Vengeance, the first book of my Knight’s Series.
In Vengeance, Dominic is the loyal friend of the tormented and scarred hero Geoffrey de Lanceau, who returns to England after fighting on Crusade to seek revenge for his father’s killing years ago. Geoffrey’s plot for vengeance involves kidnapping Lady Elizabeth Brackendale, the beautiful, headstrong daughter of Geoffrey’s avowed enemy, and holding her for ransom.
Dominic serves as Geoffrey’s conscience throughout the book, offering sage advice when asked (and sometimes when brooding Geoffrey doesn’t want to hear it). Dominic has a wry sense of humor that helps to lighten tense scenes, and he’s also intelligent, a nobleman, and handsome (of course!). He was definitely romance novel hero material, and after Vengeance was first released in paperback back in 2006 (I reissued it last December as a Kindle eBook), I had readers asking if Dominic would ever get his own story.
He did. A Knight’s Reward, the second book of my series that’s now available on Kindle, continues after Geoffrey and Elizabeth are happily married and expecting their second child. Dominic is sent to the sleepy town of Clovebury on a secret mission: to find a stolen shipment of silks that belongs to Geoffrey and is worth a small fortune. He is disguised as a peddler, hobbling through the town market, when he recognizes someone buying bread: Gisela Anne Balewyne. She’s a commoner, but the only woman he ever loved. He had to say “goodbye” to her years ago when he left to join King Richard on crusade. He wonders what she’s doing in Clovebury, far from where they first met.
When she flees the market, he follows. He catches up with her in a stable, only to realize she’s changed from the woman he knew. She has a young son and barely makes a living as a tailor—and she harbors secrets, including the fact that she ran away from her abusive husband who is searching for her. Dominic vows not only to succeed in his mission for Geoffrey, but to win Gisela’s love again—goals that endanger them all, especially when Dominic learns she’s been promised a hefty payment to make clothes from some of the stolen silks. As he unravels the truth about the silk shipment and her little boy, he faces losing all that’s dear to him—or winning a knight’s greatest reward.
A Knight’s Reward is an emotional story, but one that I was able to lighten with Dominic’s humor and wit. Since I was already well acquainted with him from Vengeance, it was a fun challenge to keep his character consistent and also look ahead to him appearing in Books 3 and 4 of my series. As an author, it was easy to fall in love with Dominic—and I hope readers feel the same way, too!
For more information on A Knight’s Vengeance and A Knight’s Reward, please visit my website.
What romance novel did you read lately that made you think a minor character deserved to be the hero or heroine of a book? I will gift one visitor who comments with a Kindle copy of A Knight’s Vengeance or A Knight’s Reward–winner’s pick!