Hump day? No problem. We’ve got an interview with Nicola Davidson, author of Surrender To Sin, that’s sure to take the mid-week blues far, far away. “I like my scorching hot lust with a large side of friendship” might just be the best thing we’ve read all week!
What are your five favorite movies with romance or romantic elements?
I’d have to say Love Actually, Emma, The Notebook, Braveheart, and Kate and Leopold.
Love Actually: I adored all the characters in this movie, but especially liked Jamie (Colin Firth) and Aurelia (Lucia Moniz.) So many sweet, funny scenes as they attempted to communicate, getting it wrong but still unable to deny the growing attraction to each other. My favorite scene is when he leaves the awkward family Christmas and instead flies back to her, making his declaration in the restaurant in broken Portuguese. SO romantic! And then it turns out she took English lessons ‘Just in cases’. Swoon. Love conquers all – even the language barrier.
Emma: Ohhhh, Mr. Knightley (Jeremy Northam.) Both stuffy and sweet, a real gentleman’s gentleman Regency hero. It is equal parts annoying and sniffle-worthy as he drops subtle, awkward hints about his feelings for Emma that she keeps missing. But then comes the last scene in the movie with one of the truly great romantic lines: ‘Marry me, my wonderful, darling friend.’
The Notebook: What a perfectly cast movie. Noah (Ryan Gosling) and Allie (Rachel McAdams) were just brilliant together as the working class man and his society princess trying to break free. Although there are SO many fabulous scenes, a random one sticks out for me. Again, near the end, when Allie has to choose between her fiancé Lon and Noah. She pulls up outside Noah’s house in her car, hops out with her suitcases, and gives him the big shrug. Not a word is said but it captures one of the key essences of love – the heart wants what it wants, even if on paper it seems like absolutely the wrong choice.
Braveheart: Before the patriotism and raging bloody battles, there was an incredibly sweet romance between William Wallace (Mel Gibson) and Murron MacClannough (Catherine McCormack) childhood friends reunited as adults. Their courtship is just delicious, tender yet full of wonderful crisp banter that says their minds are in accord as much as their hearts. The scene when they sit together on the rock and he offers to teach her to read is gorgeous enough, but when they arrive back at her home and he presents her with the thistle she gave him as a child at his father and brother’s funeral…oh my.
Kate and Leopold: Two words. Hugh Jackman. The part of Leopold, Duke of Albany couldn’t have been more perfectly cast. There are so many swoon-worthy scenes, especially when he invites her to dinner to apologize, but my favorite scene is the one where Kate’s (Meg Ryan) handbag is snatched on the street, and Leopold borrows the carriage horse to ride to the rescue. ‘Your hand, woman’ he says, scooping her up onto the back of the horse, before charging forward, chasing down the thief and cornering him. It’s not just the bystanders who applaud such courage and chivalry! Happy sigh!
I’d say I thought about all these movies a bit while writing Surrender to Sin. I adore banter, the wittier the better, and had a lot of fun with the scenes where my wicked hero Sin teases and lures Grace, a very proper lady, out of her shell. My heroes are always pretty chivalrous – even the wicked ones! I like my scorching hot lust with a large side of friendship, I think that is what ices the happily ever after cake. The knowledge that they like as well as want each other, which is a pretty strong foundation for lasting love.
My book boyfriends:
Rhage (JR Ward): I love this guy. The way he sees his Mary, caring for her even though he might lose her to illness, his instinctive protection of her even in full monster mode – swoon. My hero Sin is a protector, a battler against injustice, and that is why he agrees to help my heroine Grace with her bad betrothal situation.
Stephen Kenyon, Duke of Ashburton (Mary Jo Putney): One Perfect Rose is about my favorite Regency ever, largely in part to this wonderful hero. Even in the face of terrible odds, he is noble and sexy and generous, and doesn’t shirk from tough times. Sin is like this, he gets in, Hessians and all, even when faced with the nastiest of villains.
Lord Nicholas Stafford (Jude Deveraux): A Knight in Shining Armor was one of the first historical romances I read, and cemented my love for the genre. What I adored, was that this guy was funny and flawed and curious and when he found ‘the one’ treated her damned right. Sin is definitely flawed and funny, and the knots this rake ties himself up in over Grace were a laugh to write.
Darcy or Wentworth?
(bonus: who’s your favorite Darcy or Wentworth on screen?)
DARCY. Ummm, Mathew McFadyen by a nose.
Christian or Gideon?
GIDEON. All the way.
Rochester or Heathcliff?
Spock or Kirk?
KIRK (especially the Chris Pine version)
Sunrise or sunset?
Angst or humor?
Tea or coffee?
NEITHER – hot chocolate for me.
Wine or beer?
NEITHER – I’m partial to a vodka, lime and lemonade.
Cake or pie?
BOTH. Come on, that’s like asking who the favorite child is!
Scruff, beard, or clean-shaven?
SCRUFF. Hard to go past a little sexy stubble.
Blue-collar or white collar?
WHITE COLLAR. I love my lords!
Jeans or a suit?
Car or motorcycle?