Jane Porter: Life with the Alpha Hero


We’re heading towards Valentine’s Day and I’m in the thick of writing my next, and final, Taming of the Sheenans story, set in Marietta, Montana and I love this series because it celebrates tough rugged men and equally strong women.

The series started with five brothers that grew up together on the Sheenan ranch in Paradise Valley and each of the brothers (including the lost brother, Shane, that shows up this April) is a true alpha hero.

American actors Robert Redford (left) and Paul Newman in a still from the film, 'Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid,' directed by George Roy Hill, 1969. (Photo by 20th Century Fox/Archive Photos/Getty Images)
American actors Robert Redford (left) and Paul Newman in a still from the film, ‘Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid,’ directed by George Roy Hill, 1969. (Photo by 20th Century Fox/Archive Photos/Getty Images)

An alpha hero is my favorite hero to write, and read. He isn’t defined by money or success. He might be powerful and successful, but that’s not what sets him apart.


What makes him riveting reading is that he is almost always a masculine, primal male. He doesn’t need to be rich, but he must have the means to provide for his woman. And he can and will, because he is strong, mentally and physically.

But alpha males are not perfect. They make mistakes…maybe even more than other men…and that’s because they take risks and they aren’t quitters and they refuse to walk away from a fight where something important is at stake.

john-wayne-movie-poster-1971-1020222804These heroes may have painful pasts, too, and because they’ve had to overcome challenges and tragedies, they can be overly confident. Possibly arrogant.

But when they love, oh how they love. Once an alpha hero finds his match…his mate…he will never be content with another woman.

I adore reading and writing alpha heroes because they sizzle and are sensual in bed (whether they seduce the heroine before marriage or wait til after), but he’s complex, and he demands more from his woman. He doesn’t want a doormat. He wants an equal, and he’s going to demand a lot from his woman. Maybe even in bed.

UnknownA great alpha hero must know how to satisfy a woman. He must focus on her, and focus on her pleasure, ensuring she is going to have the most sensual, satisfying experience of her life. He’s a man that’s gifted in foreplay, and can, and will, put her needs before his.

Readers that enjoy love scenes, want to read love scenes where the hero does satisfy the heroine…but not just sexually, emotionally, too. A great love scene requires connection and time. In real life people are rushed and tired and there might just not be enough foreplay, but in a romance novel, the hero better make sure he has endless time and energy to please his woman.

4343437733_remembering_paul_newman_photos_02152009_43_820x1003_answer_3_xlargeAnd thank goodness this same hero doesn’t ignore his ranch responsibilities. We don’t read about him leaving his socks or boots all over the bedroom. His dirty Wranglers aren’t crumpled on the bathroom floor. His truck isn’t filled with junkfood wrappers. Even better, he always takes care of the livestock and the chores so that she doesn’t have to pick up his slack. No, the great alpha hero in our western romances is concerned about making life better for her. He isn’t there to make life harder, but easier.

images-1I love that.

I love that in a romance, we get a man who wants and needs his woman, but doesn’t want her trapped in the laundry room, or the kitchen.


Do you have a favorite type of hero? What makes him special? I’d love to hear what kind of man makes you swoon! (He can be real or fictional!)  Leave a comment for a chance to win a $15 gift card from Amazon!

TheTycoon'sKiss-SMALLWinner announced on the 10th!

PS: In case you’re interested in catching up with my Sheenan Brothers, Book 2, The Tycoon’s Kiss is on sale for .99 until Feb 8th so be sure to get your download soon!


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33 thoughts on “Jane Porter: Life with the Alpha Hero”

  1. I like my heroes to be bad boys with a wild streak. I have enjoyed all of the Sheenan brothers books and can’t wait to read this one next.

  2. you have described my Alpha heroes to a T and The Duke was always my fav Hero. The Sheehan books are what hero’s are all about too and I can’t wait to read this next Sheehan Brother.

  3. I think my favorite kind of hero depends on the book I’m reading at the time. Strong alpha heroes are always appealing, but then I read a book with a wounded hero and I can’t help but fall in love. Or I reread Pride and Prejudice, and suddenly I love the brooding hero. So I guess my favorite type is the well-written hero! Convince me he’s worth loving, and I will.

  4. Love the classics you posted! I grew up knowing those hero’s because they were my mom’s favorites. I love the cowboys – they get me every time.

  5. Hi Jane,
    Great post about alpha males! I think you hit all their finer points and their flaws. They are fun to read and write! And I love that we have very strong heroines that match them. My favs growing up were Clint and Michael Landon and more recently Chris Hemsworth as Thor. He’s so strong, but flawed at the same time. 🙂

  6. I love seeing all types of heroes within books… want to see their personalities come to life and enjoy their journey to happiness! 🙂

  7. Great post! I love reading with the alpha male as the main guy. I like knowing that the hero of the story will be strong enough to protect his lady but also make her feel loved all the way to her toes! And I love that even though the hardworking alphas think they have it all together they ultimately know that their lady is what makes them whole. It always helps too when they wear a cowboy hat!

  8. I would have to say a cowboy does it for me. I am not sure why because I am not around any cowboy except in books.

  9. Hi Jane what a complete and authentic description of those alphas! They’re the best with just a hint of tenderness and apology. Oh, and I love smoldering looks, too LOL, a hot-dark gaze. Best of luck with the Sheenans. Hubba! xox

  10. I love the alpha male: strong, powerful, loyal, but yet he always manages to fall in love… in time, but when he does, he falls hard!

  11. My favorite hero may be more of a Beta than an Alpha. Not leaving a mess and helping out are important. He must also have a deep sense of honor and integrity. Almost as important is a sense of humor. With out that life would lack a certain spark and fun.

  12. Rugged cowboy. Like Anson Mount or Sam Elliott….Or so many of the old west cowboys that I read about.

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