Bad Boys of RELIC (and the Old West!)

When writing in a historical (or in my case, alternate historical) era, it’s important to search for universal elements that modern readers can to relate to. We all love to see those timeless themes and timeless characters that have existed in every era of history.

Today I’m writing about one of the very enjoyable timeless characters: the Bad Boy. I was immediately drawn to this topic, because RELIC is set in the Old West, an era and setting positively crawling with troublemakers. Here are just a few Bad Boys that grace the pages of RELIC:

The Outlaw
You’re probably already imagining the type. A dangerously handsome young man, with a bandana hiding half his face, bursts into the bank and shouts, “This is a stick up!” He gets the cash, shoots his pistols in the air, and rides off on his trusty horse into the desert.

A band of outlaws called The Chimera Gang play a role in RELIC, but I can’t give too many details about them. Needless to say, they’re bad, bad boys.


The Cowboy
My favorite cowboy in RELIC is Landon Black. He’s a rogue with a heart of gold. He’s not a criminal, like the Outlaw, though he may have seen the inside of the local jailhouse from time to time. He works hard, and so he likes the play hard. When he comes in from the range, he wants women and whiskey, and that usually means trouble. You don’t need to fear for your life with this kind of Bad Boy. Maybe just your heart.


The Warrior
The Apache warriors in RELIC have good cause for behaving badly. With relic miners encroaching on their most sacred mountain, they have little other choice than to send a message that won’t be forgotten.





The Creole
In my alternate history version of the Old West, Spanish Creole make up the ruling class even as far north as Colorado. Thanks to the massive wealth gleaned from their mines, they maintain a kind of financial hold on most of the town. Álvar Castilla is young, handsome, charming, and filthy rich. He has a taste for expensive and dangerous relics, which can only lead to trouble . . .


History has provided us with so many delicious Bad Boys. We could easily devote an entire blog to the subject, let alone one post. What do you think? Who is your favorite historical era Bad Boy?


*  *  * 

 Renee Collins is a YA writer and professional ponderer. She loves historical settings, fantasy, and semi-tragic romance. RELIC is her first novel, coming Fall 2013 from Entangled Teen!

8 thoughts on “Bad Boys of RELIC (and the Old West!)

  1. Oooh, Alvar… and Landon… and RELIC!! I love the setting and the bad boys in RELIC and can’t wait for everyone else to love it, too!

  2. Leigh Smith says:

    Ooh, I’m even more intrigued! Relic sounds so good! I love any bad boy, no matter the era. (So long as they have a heart of gold.)

    • reneecollins13 says:

      It’s true. A Bad Boy in any era= Hot. And the heart of gold is a must, even if it’s deeply buried. It has to be there.

  3. Laura Golden says:

    I can’t wait to read RELIC, Renee! The TRUE GRIT meets THE PRESTIGE comparison in your summary is killer. And now I find out the book is filled with bad boys (some of whom have hearts of gold)! Sign me up, please. 😉

  4. reneecollins13 says:

    Thanks!! And yes, haha, bad boys abound. After all, they didn’t call it the Wild West for nothing.

  5. Nice, Renee! Can’t wait to read it. Love the old west. Love the bad boys. Win!

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