Guest blog by Susanna Kearsley, author of The Shadowy Horses
OK, I have to say that in my time as a museum worker I did mingle with some archaeologists, and none of them looked anything at all like David Fortune, the hero of my book The Shadowy Horses (which has just been re-issued by Sourcebooks). In fact, the archaeologists I know would roll their eyes if I suggested that their work, with all its detailed methodology and scientific focus, might be sexy. But there’s no denying that, in many people’s minds, it is.
When I discussed this with a couple of the women working at my local library, they had a few suggestions why it was that archaeology—and archaeologists—might make us swoon. Indiana Jones aside (because we all know that real archaeologists don’t run around in fedoras, with bullwhips, don’t we? Don’t we?), the fact remains that archaeology is all about exploring, and that carries the potential for adventure. Explorers, by nature, are brave and adaptable and self-reliant, all swoon-worthy traits in a man.
Sure, they may only be exploring as far as Ohio , but many digs take them away to exotic locations like Greece, South America, or underwater beneath the Black Sea. These are women and men who aren’t fettered to desks in a 9 to 5 job. They have freedom to travel, to chart their own course (well, as long as they get back in time to mark papers at their universities, that is…) But they’re not tied down to convention the same way that, say, an accountant might be. And that, too, can be sexy.
Besides which, they’re smart. They’re intelligent. And when you combine the appeal of a man who can debate morphological projectile point typology and the classification of flaked stone tools, with the rugged allure of a man who spends much of his day working out of doors, that’s a potent mix for any romance hero.
Maybe the real reason, though, was the final one given to me by the women who worked at the library. “Well,” they said, after some thought, “archaeologists work in the dirt. They get dirty, and sweaty.”
I wasn’t quite following. “And?”
“And that means,” said the women, “they might have to take off their shirts.”
Why do you think we think archaeology’s sexy?
GIVEAWAY: 1 print copy of The Shadowy Horses is up for grabs! Open to US and CAN readers. Enter by leaving a comment telling us why archaeology or archaeologists are sexy! The last day to enter is October 19, 2012. Good luck!