Elisabeth Barrett, author of the Star Harbor Series, including Deep Autumn Heat and the upcoming release, Blaze of Winter, is at Book Savvy Babe today with a guest post about secondary characters. Stay tuned to the end of the post for information about a giveaway for Blaze of Winter!
When Secondary Characters Steal the Show!
Secondary characters in novels and movies – what is it about them we love so much? They can clarify the hero’s motives, spice up a scene, or simply add some levity. Let me give you a few examples of some of my favorites:
Sean Connery as Indiana Jones’ Father in Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade
Evanna Lynch as Luna Lovegood in Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince
James Marsters as Spike in Buffy
Val Kilmer as Doc Holliday in Tombstone
Jennifer Hudson as Effie White in Dreamgirls
Mr. and Mrs. Bennet from the novel Pride and Prejudice (yes, I’m nominating them both!)
When I was writing the first book in my Star Harbor series, Deep Autumn Heat, I tried to keep the focus on the relationship between the two main characters, Seb Grayson (a celebrity chef) and Lexie Meyers (a local restauranteur). Sure, I was focused on world-building – the town of Star Harbor is featured prominently in the novel – but the book is a romance, and I wanted to concentrate on the romance. But slowly and surely, some of the townspeople began to creep into the narrative. Seb’s brothers – Val, Cole, and Theo (Seb’s twin), of course. And Lexie’s co-workers, including Buster Quigley, her taciturn grill cook with a secret past. And the woman who always tells it like it is – Clam Shak owner/sculptor Babs Kincaide. In fact, some of the most interesting interactions in the book involved the secondary characters.
And then I started writing Blaze of Winter, the second book in the series. In the book, Theo, an author of swashbuckling adventure novels, returns to Star Harbor to work on his latest book. When he takes a room at the Star Harbor Inn to get some peace and quiet, he runs into Avery Newbridge, a gentle social worker, who is there to help her aunt manage the Inn — and to try to figure out her life. Theo is irresistible, yet Avery spends much of her time trying to resist him!
By this point, I was confident enough to give some attention to the secondary characters, and so more townspeople made appearances, forcing themselves into scenes, speaking witty dialogue, and helping the main characters grow. Luke Bedwin, local hardware store owner, convinces Avery to take up her violin again, while Avery’s Aunt Kate serves as a foil for the emotional turmoil that Avery is going through. Theo’s brothers are a constant presence, especially Cole and Val, who give Theo lots (and LOTS) of advice. Fan favorites Buster and Babs are there, too, and I have to say, I was waiting for them to show up the whole time I was writing.
I won’t quite say they steal the show – though for me, Babs always feels like she’s going to run away with whatever scene she happens to be in – but the secondary characters in Blaze of Winter definitely enrich Star Harbor and the story, and help Theo and Avery along to their HEA.
Winter heats up in this hot new Star Harbor romance, as another sexy Grayson brother, a wickedly handsome writer, plots his happily ever after with a sweet stranger.
Frustrated with her job in Boston, social worker Avery Newbridge welcomes the opportunity to reassess her life when family asks her to help manage the Star Harbor Inn. Trying to figure out her future is overwhelming enough, but she doesn’t count on distraction in the form of one Theo Grayson, the gorgeous, green-eyed author who she knows is trouble from the moment he saunters into the inn.
Not only does he have a talent for writing swashbuckling adventures, but Theo also has a soft spot for big-hearted damsels in distress, especially a woman who’s great at helping everyone—except herself. Avery’s demons challenge him, but for desire this hot, he isn’t backing down. With every kiss and heated whisper Theo promises her his heart . . . if only Avery is willing to open up and accept it.
View an excerpt of Blaze of Winter on Scribd: Click here.
Pre-order Blaze of Winter: Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or the iBookstore (Apple)!
About the Author:
Raised in a sleepy little Connecticut town, Elisabeth draws on her upbringing to write small-town romances. Her summers spent living and working on Cape Cod and Martha’s Vineyard were the inspiration for the Star Harbor series, which kicks off with Deep Autumn Heat and continues with Blaze of Winter. Currently, Elisabeth lives in Northern California with her husband and three children. Find her online: Website | Blog | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads
Win a NetGalley preview copy of Blaze of Winter! The contest ends September 9th at midnight (EDT). To Enter the Contest, you’ll MUST HAVE a NetGalley account, and answer the question below in the comment section: (if you are eligible for the contest, please mention the contest in your comment)
Which secondary characters have you loved who have stolen the show?
Book Savvy Babe: Thank you Elisabeth for stopping by today! I love so many secondary characters, one of my favorites was Vlad from the Night Huntress series by Jeaniene Frost (he has his own book now though ) I’m eager to hear what secondary characters other readers love!