Tuesday, 18 January 2011

Character Spotlight ~ Irene Hannon's Jake Taylor & Liz Michaels

Jake & Liz

Irene Hannon returns with a new romantic suspense series, Guardians of Justice, following on from her highly successful Heroes of Quantico series.

Enjoy meeting Jake & Liz. Over to you, Irene:~

Jake Taylor

Brief Description

Jake is 38, 6’1”, with dark brown hair and brown eyes. As a member of the U.S. Marshals elite Special Operations Group, he’s just returned from a stint in Iraq helping secure that country’s judicial system. He’s now back in his hometown of St. Louis, where his siblings, Alison and Cole, live.

Actor/famous person

I never picture celebrities when envisioning my characters; they always take on their own unique personalities and looks. To be honest though, my publisher’s cover artists nailed the hero!

Rel: I picked Eddie Cibrian for Jake :)


Jake is a professional who handles every assignment with total dedication—even ones he doesn’t want…like protecting the wife of his late best friend. As the oldest Taylor sibling, he also feels a special responsibility to watch out for his siblings and has a strong sense of family duty.


He’s never totally recovered from the death of his wife, which he believes was his fault. Self-forgiveness is difficult for him.


He’s overly protective of his spunky sister, Alison. So sparks have a tendency to fly when they’re together.

Inspiration for the Character

As I began to research possible professions for my hero, I discovered the U.S. Marshals Service—and knew that was the place for Jake, a natural protector. But to make things interesting, I assigned him to protect a woman he intensely dislikes. I wanted to explore the issue of wrong impressions and how they can distort our perceptions. Then I threw in some unwanted romantic sizzle just to raise the stakes—and the tension!

Liz Michaels

Brief Description

Liz is 38, 5’7”, with long honey-colored hair parted to one side and green eyes. She’s an attorney and a judge, and has recently been appointed to the federal bench. Detail-oriented and smart, she’s a hard driver and high achiever who’s always been very dedicated to her career.

Actor/famous person

Again, I don’t base my characters on actors or famous people. They just appear as unique individuals in my mind.

Rel: My choice for Liz is Robin Wright


Liz is a woman with great strength and integrity. She’s a hard worker, and is totally committed to those she loves.


She pushes herself too hard and often spends too many hours on the job.


She loves to walk, is partial to her neighbor’s killer cannoli and always wears red nail polish.

Inspiration for the Character

Since I wanted to pair Liz with Jake, and he comes into the story already disliking her, I was able to take readers along as he discovers there is much more to this woman than first meets the eye. Plus I wanted to create a character who demonstrates that even successful people can harbor doubts and carry devastating emotional baggage—yet they manage to carry on.

Background to the Story

Coming off my Heroes of Quantico series, which starred three FBI buddies, I decided to feature three siblings bound by blood and a passion for justice. Thus, the Guardians of Justice series was born.

I’m having a blast with the family dynamic in this series. Think two overprotective brothers and a very independent sister. As you can imagine, there are some skirmishes. But despite those clashes, they love each other, are totally loyal and will do anything to help each other. They’re a great family, and I hope readers love them as much as I do.

(Copyright: www.visualphotos.com)

So starting with that family dynamic, I added touches of humor, lots of suspense, a riveting villain and a healthy dose of romance. I hope that’s the recipe for a book that will keep readers glued to the page—and coming back for more. It will be hard to top the Heroes of Quantico—all bestsellers that garnered a Daphne du Maurier award, an RT Book Reviews Reviewers’ Choice award and a RITA nomination—but I’m giving it my best shot!

As with all my series, each book stands alone; no plot threads carry over from book to book. But please do watch for Alison’s story, Deadly Pursuit, coming in September!

Thanks so much, Irene :) Lovely having you here again.

On Thursday the spotlight shines on DiAnn Mills' Ember Farrar & John Timmons from The Fire in Ember.

Relz Reviewz Extras

Reviews of Against All Odds , An Eye for An Eye and In Harm's Way

Character spotlights on Coop & Monica, Mark & Emily and Nick & Rachel

Interview with Irene

Visit Irene's website

Buy Irene's books at Amazon or Koorong


Amber S. said...

Great spotlight! :) I'm reading this book right now for review, and it's very intriguing. Definitely some romantic tension right off the bat. ;)


Sara said...

This is great! Irene Hannon rocks at suspense and I loved her Heros of Quantico series. Can't wait to read this one.

Jen said...

Sounds great. Can this be added to my TBR pile please? Loved her Heroes of Quanico series and I am sure this series will be just as good.

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