Lit Wicks: Contemporary Outdoorsy Heroes

Welcome to Lit Wicks! This is where we pair an author’s backlist with candles to really immerse yourself in the reading experience. All of the candles featured in these post are from Etsy, which means there is often worldwide shipping and that you’re supporting independent crafters and sellers. The Etsy candle rabbit hole is one I have gone down many times.

One of my favorite types of heroes is the nature-loving hero. I’m not a fan of getting out in nature, but I do love a strapping man who has an interest in trees, hiking, flowers, etc. Just maybe don’t expect me to join him.

If you’re curious about what other authors have received the Lit Wicks treatment, check out our category page. And if you’d like to suggest an author’s backlist for a future Lit Wicks column, please email me!

Instant Attraction
A | BN | K | AB

 Instant Attraction by Jill Shalvis 

I should mention that romance is the first book I had in mind for this post.

Sarah has mentioned plenty of times on the site how this book inspired her to give snowboarding a try. In fact, if you love the outdoorsy or a hero who does, Sarah says this entire series is a winner.

(Ed. note: I endorse both these messages.)

Candle: Clip Clop Candle Shop — Fresh Powder 9oz. ($10)

A white candle in a glass jar before a fireplace.

I like that you can choose between a wood wick and a cotton wick for this candle. I’m personally team wood wick because I love the crackling sound it makes.

All I Am
A | BN | K | AB

All I Am by Nicole Helm

This is the second book in the A Farmers’ Market Story and has an opposites attract romance between a party girl and a virginal hero who sells homemade dog treats at the local market.

Dog treats!

I feel like a majority of Helm’s books have an outdoorsy theme to them, if you want to dive into her backlist.

Candle: Beverly and 3rd — Farmers Market 9oz. ($16.50)

An off-white candle with a minimalist label in front of a white background.

Obviously, I didn’t go the route of a dog treat candle.

This candle also gives a wood wick option, but it’s $1.50 more. This farmers market scent has some autumn notes, with spiced pumpkin and sweet blueberries.

A | BN | K | AB

 Nuts by Alice Clayton

This is the first book in the Hudson Valley series and all three books feature heroes who have some farming/making-type roles.

The hero of this one, Leo, runs his own farm, which includes a walnut orchard.

Hence the title.

Candle: Teresa Lynn’s Simple Lux — Squirrel!! 8oz. ($9.41)

A white candle in a glass mason jar amidst a pile of autumn leaves

I love that this candle is named “Squirrel!!” with two exclamation marks. This candle is supposed to smell like all the gooey, yummy, nutty desserts we love: pecan pie, candied walnuts, and toasted hazelnuts with a hint of caramel.

A | BN | K

Haven by Rebekah Weatherspoon

The hero, Shep, is a reclusive nature photographer with cute dog.

He also provides the heroine with some much needed peace and solace in his cabin, after she struggles to cope with some serious trauma. He’s a sweetheart.

Candle: Heavenly Home Naturals — Cabin in the Woods 8oz. ($16)

A bright white candle with a label with light blue lettering. It's displayed next to some pinecones and pine needles.

This candle scent has a mixture of woods. We’ve got pine! We’ve got fir! Want cedarwood? Well, we’ve got that, too.

Taking the Heat
A | BN | K | AB

Taking the Heat by Victoria Dahl

Gabe, the hero, is an oral-sex-loving (giving, by the way), rock climbing librarian.


The candle I picked for this one is inspired by mountain air. Now, I’ve never been rock climbing, but I can imagine the air is a little different atop a big rock.

Candle: Dan Candle — Cool Mountain Air 6oz. ($12)

Two ombre blue candles in glass jars. One medium and one large, with black metal lids.

This candle has top, middle, and base notes that include ozone, eucalyptus, and cedar. It also comes in three different sizes.

Kiss the Sky
A | BN | K | AB

Kiss the Sky by M.K. Schiller

This romance features a hero and heroine who are climbing Pakistan’s K2.

I went a different route with this one. Instead of being inspired by the setting in nature, I chose to pick something integral to the experience of being outside and away from civilization.

Candle: Hunter and Her — Backpacker’s Breakfast 8oz. ($8)

A candle in a metal tin. It's outside in the dirt next to a rock and some wildflowers.

This candle is supposed to be reminiscent of sleeping under the stars, of campfire coffee, notes of warm pine. This was also inspired by the Pacific Crest Trail

Cherish Hard
A | BN | K

Cherish Hard by Nalini Singh

If the cover didn’t give you any indication, the hero is a blue collar guy who doesn’t mind getting his hands dirty as a landscaper.

He’s gripping that shovel with such confidence.

Candle: Lindsay Lucas Candles — Fresh Cut Grass 8oz. ($9.30)

A vibrant green candle in a hexagonal glass jar.

Am I the only one who loves the smell of freshly cut grass? Sometimes it aggravates my allergies, but I’d say it’s worth it.

This candle also comes in three different sizes and I love the hexagonal jars.

Once Upon a Rose
A | BN | K | AB

Once Upon a Rose by Laura Florand

The hero, Matthieu, is a bit different than the previous heroes as he owns and cultivates a roseraie. I bet he smells lovely. Like, all the time.

And there’s no excuses for him not to bring you flowers.

Candle: The Crooked Cottage — Rose Garden 8oz. ($17.95)

A candle in a square jar amidst some light pick rose petals.

This candle does what it says on the tin: smells like a rose garden.

I understand, however, that some people may find rose scents to be cloying or overpowering. Well, good news. The Crooked Cottage has eight other scents in their floral collection and their candles come in three different sizes.

Are you a fan of outdoorsy heroes? Who is your favorite contemporary, nature-loving hunk?

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