Surprisingly enough, dreaming up the hero was actually much harder than thinking up the heroine. Andrew had to have a strong presence, but not come off overpowering. If he came off too strong, it wouldn’t work.
Breaking away from the usual description of a regency hero: handsome, titled and wealthy, I tried to go the other way and let his personality be his redemption, instead of his physical (or monetary) attributes. While he was tall and broad, his skin was darker than most and his nose was crooked from being broken. To most at that time he probably wouldn’t be considered handsome. However, to some he would be. And our heroine was one who of those who found him attractive. Which, quite frankly, is all that’s important. In addition to not drop-dead handsome, our hero had no money–he couldn’t or they weren’t be any reason he’d be cast into the role of ruining a young woman to regain his fortune.
Andrew is a rather complex character in several regards. When the book first starts, he comes off as rather jaded and unhappy. He doesn’t openly laugh and smile (unless feigning politeness), but as the story progresses, his demeanor changes drastically.
One aspect about Andrew that should be easy to pick up on is despite his size and reputation, he’s actually rather tender and sweet. If he truly were the brute his appearance made him to be, he’d have no guilt about his goal, nor would he wish to protect her the best he could. Not only does he wish to protect her, it seems at every turn he is taking her feelings and desires into consideration.
At the same time, Andrew had a mission. He had to ruin Brooke’s reputation and send her fleeing in order to gain his fortune. Therefore, he did have to possess a bit of a ruthlessness and determination. He might wish to protect Brooke. However, he still had to carry out his task and ruin her reputation.
When I first started writing this book, I honestly thought I’d struggle combining ruthless and tender into the same person. But actually I didn’t. Instead, at some point in the novel, he realizes the only reason he’s even going to go through with his dastardly plan is because if he doesn’t, she’ll be hurt far worse when the villain hires another to do the job.