I was reading a review of my new book, WILD THING and it talked about how my hero and heroine are total opposites. Maybe at first blush you would look at them and think so—New York Goth Girl Meets Idaho Outdoorsman—but when I really examined them, I found them to be very much alike.
Toni is deathly afraid of the outdoors and Hunter is a total outdoorsman—opposites for sure until you realize Toni is from New York, and is very much at home in the concrete jungle the same way Hunter is in the mountains of Idaho. They’re the same, but different.
Toni and Hunter are both very funny and they use their humor as camouflage, a shield, and sometimes a weapon. They are also champions in the art of verbal sparring—a lot of the time they’re sparring with each other. Their banter is so much fun!
Hunter dresses in what Toni sees as a survivor man get up and Toni is a Goth. Different, yes, but they both dress for necessity. Hunter wears the necessary clothes (good hiking boots, helmets, personal flotation devices) to be safe in a physical sense allowing him to do his work, whereas Toni dresses Goth for self-protection—emotional camouflage if you will, allowing her to hide in the crowd of beautiful models she works with on a daily basis.
Hunter spends months alone in the mountains and needs no one—the only contact he has with people are the clients he guides and protects. Toni does the same thing but in a city of eight million—she’s alone except for the models she manages. Still, she doesn’t have relationships with anyone but her one friend James. Both Toni and Hunter are alone and completely self-reliant. They’re both fiercely independent.
They have very different backgrounds, Hunter with a strong, closely knit family. Toni’s family is fractured and almost non-existent, yet they are both loners, more caretakers (in their own ways) of those they love, but neither feels comfortable asking for help.
They both have a great love for children. Hunter started a camp for disadvantaged kids, bringing them into the wilderness and teaching them self-reliance while giving them the tools to learn what it is to be part of a team. He shows them that there are people who can be relied upon. Toni works at the rec center she grew up attending—caring for and loving those who might not have parents there to do it. Both feel a strong need to give back to the youth, and give them the gifts they’ve received, gifts that made them the people they’ve become.
Through their courtship Toni and Hunter learn the same lesson—they learn to ask for and accept help and that it’s safe to rely upon someone other than themselves, for only as a team can they accomplish their greatest goals.
When I look at the relationship I have with my husband I see the same kind of differences and similarities. I’m from Brooklyn, he’s from rural Western New York. His family was close knit where as mine put the fun in dysfunctional. His was very all-American, mine very Italian… the list goes on and on. But when you get to the meat of the situation, I see that we have the same basic moral values, and though we seem completely opposite, we’re more alike than different. We come to the same conclusions, we just get there different ways.
So what do you think? Do opposites attract? Are opposites really opposite or are they just different sides of the same coin?
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