I was born and raised in rural Florida—think down-home country, not Metro-Miami. I have a soft spot for honest to goodness Southern men. I don’t know if there’s something in the water, or it’s because these boys were raised by Southern women, but these men walk the line between perfect gentlemen and alpha males. Walk the line, get it? Johnny Cash?
Southern men know how to rock a pair of jeans. Whether they’re old and faded or crisp and new, jeans should fit a man’s backside like a second skin, not sag below the upper swell of the tush. Country boys know how to wear their jeans to show off their bitts, without crushing the jewels. There’s a fine line between a hint of a bulge and the male equivalent to camel toe. Like any alpha male, they wear their confidence like a lazy smile. They have it, there’s no need to prove it.
Southern men aren’t afraid of strong women. In fact, they expect a woman to speak her mind and keep them in line. These boys love it when women can hold their whiskey, look good without makeup, and can bait a hook. Let’s face it, these boys have a wild streak. Only women secure in themselves and their relationships can handle this type of man.
Southern men clean up real good. They know when to put on a jacket and tie. Likewise, they enjoy the softer side of women. I believe they appreciate the way we smell, our soft skin, and gentle touch more because they’ve seen the Tomboy side. Contrasts are sexy. Contrasts in the same person are even sexier.
Chivalry isn’t dead, and good manners are alive and well in the South. Men open doors, pull out chairs, and say “please” and “thank you.” Southern men keep their women safe. They’ll make sure their women walk on the inside of the sidewalk, and keep an eye out for danger. Not that they think women can’t fend for themselves, but because they protect what is theirs.
Southern men know how to take charge in and out of the bedroom. They’ll listen to your opinions, but at the end of the day they will make up their own minds. They’ll let you be on top, but their rough hands will lock on and set the rhythm. These boys work hard, and they play just as hard. “Ladies first” takes on a whole new meaning in the South.
Southern men understand a woman’s need to spend time with her friends. Most will run for the hills rather than crash their women’s time with the girls. They were raised to believe that women are a mystery, and some puzzles shouldn’t be solved. Respect is a two-way street. Don’t complain about their boy’s nights and hunting trips, and they’ll never stray.
Southern men are the alpha males most women crave. They’re not the domineering yet sensitive, cocky yet troubled, billionaire yet born poor, romance novel clichés. They’re strong men who are confident enough in themselves to love strong women. If this is your type of dream man, you’ll enjoy the Tessa Lamar novels, “The Spirit Tree” and “Twelve Spirits of Christmas.” Bryson and Aaron are two distinctly Southern men who love the same woman.
Tessa Lamar Novels
Kathryn M. Hearst
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Publisher: Wyndham House
Date of Publication: November 8, 2016
Number of pages: 315 e-book 354 print
Word Count: 86,000
Cover Artist: Marcela Bolivar
Two amazing men. A serial killer. A Christmas to remember.
Tessa Lamar is dreading her first Christmas without her beloved grandfather. They say the holiday season brings out the best and the worst in people. This year, it’s brought out a serial killer, who chooses his victims based on the carol, “The Twelve Days of Christmas.”
As Tessa comes to terms with her life as a Nunnehi, the Cherokee equivalent to fairy, she finds herself in cahoots with a ghost to stop the Christmas Killer before he strikes again. She must wrangle her magic, manage family responsibilities, juggle the men in her life, and discover the person she was meant to be, in order to save…
Seven Swans a Swimming
Eight Maids a Milking
Nine Ladies Dancing
Ten Lords a Leaping
Eleven Pipers Piping
Twelve Drummers Drumming
Twelve Spirits of Christmas is the second of the Tessa Lamar Novels, Paranormal Romances with a Southern twist. If you like Southern humor, supernatural creatures, and a healthy dose of romance, then you'll love this series. Be sure to check out Kindle Scout winner, The Spirit Tree, to read the beginning of Tessa’s journey.
Aaron grabbed my arm. “When I left the scene tonight, I planned to go home. I don’t remember driving, but I ended up here.”
“That happens to me sometimes. Life on autopilot.” I smiled, trying my best to normalize the situation. I didn’t want to have this conversation without Bryson present.
“When you kissed me—”
I laughed. “You mean when you kissed me?”
“Stop dancing around the question. This is what Bryson meant when he said we were mates, isn’t it?”
I nodded. “I think so. This is new to me, too. We should talk to him about it.”
“Will you show me?”
“Show you what?”
“The firebird. I was too stunned to get a look at her, you, it is you, right?”
I considered the question. I’d always thought of the spirit animal as a separate entity. “She’s a part of me, but separate. Sometimes it feels like I have two brains running the show, especially when I shift.”
“That’s why you need to learn to control it?” He took a step closer.
“Yes.” I turned my face to his.
“I understand. Since I woke up in the hospital, I’ve want to touch you, but I know I shouldn’t. The other night with you and Bryson was the first time I felt whole in months.” He nuzzled my cheek. “I want to see her.”
It occurred to me that none of us knew what parts of Bryson Aaron had gained. Did it work like a brick? A chip off a brick was still brick. Or were the pieces unique like a mosaic? Did Aaron inherit Bryson’s magic? His ability to shift?
“We should wait for Bryson. I don’t know what will happen.”
“What do you think will happen?” He ran his hands up and down my arms.
“For one thing, you could change into a hawk.”
He laughed and nuzzled my neck.
My knees turned to rubber. Whether Aaron’s need to touch me came from ordinary human desires, or something metaphysical, I needed to distract him. “All right. Let’s go out back, but I refuse to take responsibility if something goes wrong.”
“Deal.” He took my hand and half-dragged me out the back door.
I chewed the inside of my lip. Showing him the firebird would involve me getting naked. “Turn around.”
“No. I want to see the process.” Aaron folded his arms. “Do you morph into it like in the movies?”
I shook my head. “You saw the process the other day.”
“Like I said, it was fast.”
I motioned for him to turn.
He threw his hands up and turned around. “Happy?”
“Yes.” I stripped down to nothing and focused on the firebird, easy to do considering she’d waited just below the surface since Aaron arrived.
Aaron drew a breath.
I glanced up and met his eyes. My cheeks heated, but I didn’t look away. My magic rose, and I threw my head back as the firebird burst free. She stretched her wings at her sides and soared into the night sky.
About the Author:
Kathryn M. Hearst is a southern girl with a love of the dark and strange. She has been a storyteller her entire life, as a child, she took people watching to new heights by creating back stories of complete strangers. Besides writing, she has a passion for shoes, vintage clothing, antique British cars, music, musicians and all things musical (including theater). Kate lives in central Florida with her chocolate lab, Jolene; and two rescue pups, Jagger and Roxanne. She is a self-proclaimed nerd, raising a nerdling.
The Order of the Sinistra Dei is her first series and includes titles, Feast of the Epiphany and Feast of Mercy. Kate's novel, The Spirit Tree, won a publishing contract with Kindle Press through the Kindle Scout contest. Her short stories have been published in various anthologies.