The Scotsman in a kilt
James Fraser, the lead male character in Cross Stitch by Diana Gabaldon.

If you like your heroes smart, witty, good looking and just a little bit chauvinistic (in an entirely lovable way), then Jamie Fraser is your man. I first read this book when I was 18 and still under the teenage spell of knights in shiny armour (or in Jamie’s case, Scotsman in sexy kilt) rescuing me from my dreary existence, I recently re-read it and over a decade later, it is still one of my all time favourite reads!

Now maybe it’s just my orneriness, but the whole Twilight saga Edward obsession goes over my head. Besides being too pale and umm, how do I put this delicately… greasy for my taste, I prefer a man with a little substance and a lot more personality. Think Mr. Rochester from Jane Eyre, with a cheeky sense of humour and able to wield a big sword successfully.

Lord of my heart

Aragorn from Lord of the Rings.

As a teenager he was my ultimate idea of the perfect hero (leader, fighter against evil, friend , noble, strong & sensitive)

Then - when the movie came out and he was played by Viggo Mortenson,  it was the perfect hero live on the big screen! (and one of the few times that a movie lived up to my vision of the book on which it was based)

Scarlett didn't know what she had
What would life be without Rhett Butler?

He was gorgeous beyond dreams, extremely wealthy and a scoundrel to boot. When he finally got to marry Scarlett he was devoted and loving, allowing her to do as she pleased.  The girl didn’t appreciate what she had and had to go hankering after a childhood dream, the weak wimp, Ashley.

He should have married ME! Now that would have been  a union made in heaven.

The Dashing Delaware
Alex Delaware -  the psychologist in most of Jonathan Kellerman’s novels. Ok, it’s no Pride and Prejudice or War and Peace or some other great literary work, what can I say? I like what I like.

I see Alex as an extremely dashing, good looking dude who has his own flaws, and loves Robin (his guitar making girlfriend) passionately – they have broken up and made up twice, and seem to be a permanent item now, but who knows in the world of love, huh?

So Alex is my fantasy fave, my secret crush, my “he can put his shoes under my bed anytime” boytjie.

More than just a fashion fop

Sir Percy in The Scarlett Pimpernel by Baroness Orczy, really floats my boat. In the beginning he comes across as a “fop” which the dictionary defines as “a man who is so obsessed by fashion and vain about his own appearance that he becomes ridiculous”.

It is only as the book unfolds that you realise he is actually the master mind behind numerous daring escape plans assisting various French émigrés flee France, during the French Revolution. Subsequently, his love for his wife leads him into extreme danger but he suffers incredible hardship in order to save the day in a most ingenious way.

Altogether a most romantic hero who still does it for me all these years after I first read the book in high school.

The sexy and vulnerable detective
The character who's become almost a real person to me is Detective Inspector Tommy Lynley, in Elizabeth George's brilliant detective stories.

With each new book, you learn a little bit more about Lynley, and he really grows on you! Not only is he good-looking and kind and sexy, but he is also vulnerable and liable to make the wrong decisions, especially in emotional situations, so he comes across as someone who's both a 'hero' but also needs the love and (dare I say?) guidance of a sensible woman.

I await each new book with impatient pleasure, knowing I'm going to meet up with someone I admire as well as have a soft spot for. May Elizabeth George keep us all entertained for many years to come!

Between a man with self-destructive tendencies and a vampire viking
Heathcliff is The Man for me. Yes Wuthering Heights is my favourite book and I have never come across a character that could love someone so completely, even if it destroys them in the end.

My second choice would absolutely be Eric Northman! He is tall, blonde, blue-eyed,a total bad boy and a Viking. His character in the book series is so much more powerful than the tv series.

So many to choose from
Hmm, I have so many book crushes, I hardly know where to begin!

OK, let's start with Roarke, of JD Robb's (Nora Roberts) Eve Dallas series. It's not just that he's incredibly sexy, fantastically wealthy and a cyberfiend to boot, but he adores his completely non-trendy, tough-as-nails, unromantic wife not just for her exterior, but for all the scared-little-girl parts she keeps safely hidden.

He wouldn't dream of forcing her to be something she's not, but accepts her with all her (extremely visible) flaws). And their banter often has me laughing out loud. What's not to like?

In the same vein, all four of the Quinn brothers from Nora Roberts' Chesapeake Bay quadrilogy. For some reason, people seem to think I should be embarrassed to be caught reading her books - but the woman can write a character like nobody's business!

And these men are spot-on; real men, no wussies, no macho posers, no plain old idiots. Their interaction is what gets me every time - with each other and the women in their lives.

Who is your book crush? Tell us in the comment box below.