By now you know it's the second in a series of books based around the Brannigan family; Daniel being the youngest of the Brannigan brothers with Tyler and Reid's stories still to come. But the first seedling of the story didn't come from Danny. It came from the fabulous Jo.
One of the most difficult things to ignore is a fascinating secondary character. Although she didn't appear very often in The Inconvenient Laws Of Attraction, Liv's best friend Jo was one of those characters for me. When Liv first met her, Jo was homeless and living on the streets. I didn't need to know more than that at the time because it wasn't her story but no matter how I tried I couldn't stop asking questions. Why was she homeless at eighteen? Where was her family? How scary must it have been for someone so young? Keeping in mind New York's Finest Rebel was set six years after she met Liv, I then had to ask how she got from there to where she is at the start of her story. Suffice to say, I had tonnes to work with!
I think what I ended up loving most about Jo was her optimism. She's a tough cookie, don't get me wrong, but the joy she found in the kind of things many of us leave behind in childhood made me smile (watch for the swinging skirt/carousel scenes). She also has buckets of sass; a necessity when dealing with Danny, who has been her nemesis since Liv first brought her home to meet the family. Which brings us back to the man himself...
I HEART Daniel Brannigan. I love how quick-witted he is, that he's a man of action, how he says what he thinks and doesn't care if people have a problem with it. He's just... sigh... and don't even get me started on the sexy!
Yes, the uniform may possibly have something to do with it.
Since the continuity of The Inconvenient Laws Of Attraction established the Brannigan brothers were cops, I knew I had to try and make each of them as different as possible. In Danny's case, he's the only brother who didn't want to go into the family business. Instead he joined the Marines straight out of High School. By the time the story starts he's a Marine Reserve and is with the Emergency Services Unit of the NYPD. There were a couple of reasons for this (linked to his back-story, so I don't want to give too much away) but when it came to his unit, I knew right away I'd found the right 'fit'. The ESU does everything from rescue potential jumpers on bridges to water rescues to 'SWAT' duties to dealing with biohazards. If I were to tell you their motto is "At Your Service... Anything, Anytime, Anywhere!" it might give you an idea of how diverse their work can be. I knew Danny would love that. It also gave me a nice angle to work with since he spends so much of his working life rescuing people and suddenly finds himself attracted to a woman who point blank refuses to be rescued, even when she has crippling blisters.
N.B. I should also mention what a terrible chore it was doing research for this part of the story. But since I like to be thorough and you would expect nothing less I spent many, many, many hours looking at pics/videos/films of the NYPD. I'm now considering becoming a stalker the next time I'm in Manhattan. Just sayin'...
Back to the subject of the book and...
Friends to lovers are one of my favorite themes in a romance (as witnessed by my first book, The Bridal Bet) but there is also something incredibly fun about 'enemies' to lovers. Danny and Jo have convinced themselves they hate each other and have been sparring for so long it's hard for them to adjust. But man-oh-man did that make for some lightning fast dialogue! Sometimes I would start a scene thinking I knew what was coming, then they would butt heads and bite at each other and more often than not I found they'd taken me in a totally different-and often hilarious-direction.That's not to say they don't still have some tough issues to content with-they do-but the journey was So. Much. Fun.
I'm going to stop talking about it now or I'll have nothing left to blog about when the book comes out. Next week I'll tell you a little about Tyler Brannigan (see last weeks blog for associated pretty picture). Have a lovely week my friends. How's 2012 shaping up so far?
It's back to the cave for me!