Annie West on The Desert King’s Captive Bride and Her 10th Sheikh Story
by Annie West, author of The Desert King’s Captive Bride
I love a really good sheikh romance. I love the contrast between all-powerful male and a woman who, it appears, is totally under his control, though looks can be deceiving. I love the clash of cultures and the Cinderella element. I love the sheer fairy tale element. I particularly enjoy seeing a powerful man realize he’s not in control when it comes to one, very special woman. Most of all I love a truly feel-good happy ever even if, in the beginning, that seems impossible.
Dashing hero, exotic location, strong emotions…all appeal to me so much.
Yet I used to scoff at the idea of writing a sheikh romance. I didn’t think I had it in me to write a bold, powerful leader who’d strut across the pages and single out the one woman who stood out from all the rest. I wasn’t sure I could redeem such a strong man, used to having his own way. Plus I wondered about writing a heroine who started with so many obstacles stacked against her – perhaps she couldn’t even act of her own free will – but who proved strong enough to match her hero and not be overpowered by him. Could I make that happy ever after believable?
Well, I tried one sheikh story and it soon became two. I was hooked! I’ve discovered I love disappearing into an exotic far off land where the only rules are the ones I create and where the characters are passionate, powerful and honorable. My current book is, I’ve just realized, my 10th sheikh story! And to me this one is something extra special. Here’s a taste:
She pitied his bride, whoever she was, but clearly he wanted her to be impressed. What would it cost her to play along at least until she got to the bottom of this?
‘Who are you marrying? Do I know her?’
His smile widened and she saw the gleam of strong white teeth. Fear scudded down her spine as she read his expression.
‘That would be you, my dear Ghizlan. I’m taking you as my wife.’
As you can probably guess, The Desert King’s Captive Bride is an enemies to lovers story about a marriage of convenience.
My private working title was ‘The Princess and the Barbarian’, which may give you a hint of how much fun I had writing this. For Sheikh Huseyn isn’t your average prince. He’s big, bold, and very, very dangerous. He doesn’t play by the rules. When he wants something he makes sure he gets it. In this case it’s Ghizlan he wants. The trouble is, Ghizlan isn’t a doormat ready to be bossed around by some big hulk of a warrior, no matter how much she’s secretly attracted to him. This is a story of fireworks and passion, of strong characters who are both striving for the same thing, though it takes them a while to discover that.
If you want to find out more about this couple, or read a longer excerpt, visit my website at firstname.lastname@example.org or better yet, grab yourself a copy of the book! And for those of you who like revisiting characters you’ve already met, I can tell you this book links to my last December release The Desert King’s Secret Heir. If you haven’t read that story, don’t worry, you can definitely read Captive Bride by itself!
My question to you is this – is there something you’ve avoided doing because you were convinced you wouldn’t like it or wouldn’t be good at it, and then later found it’s something you really enjoy? I’d love to hear if there is.
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“I was blackmailed into this marriage. I will not be blackmailed into bed.”
Princess Ghizlan of Jeirut has returned home to find that warrior Sheikh Huseyn al Rasheed has seized her late father’s kingdom. With her sister held hostage, Ghizlan has no choice. Her barbarian captor is determined to tame her, rule her—and make her his own!
Forcing Ghizlan’s hand in marriage will not be enough to conquer her body and soul: Huseyn’s iron will is challenged at every step by her magnificent beauty and fierce pride. It won’t be long before they both fall prey to the firestorm between them…