Romance Cover Model: Michael O’Hearn

mike ohearn

Michael O’Hearn, A “Titan” of Romance

Michael O’Hearn has a body that’s impossible to forget.

Since the 1980s, male cover models have caught the admiring gazes of millions of romance readers. These hunks have gained legions of enthusiastic fans. Fabio was the most famous, but even his muscular physique seems slight when compared to the massive proportions of O’Hearn.

Fitness aficionados no doubt are familiar with the athletic phenom.

Romance novel enthusiasts may recognize Mike O’Hearn’s form–or face–as one of the cover models for Topaz books back in the mid to late 1990s.

mike o'hearn

Mike O’Hearn’s Early Life

Patrick Michael O’Hearn was born on January 26, 1969, in Seattle, Washington, USA.

He started life from humble beginnings, growing up on a farm in Kirkland, WA. O’Hearn hails from a large family of 9 siblings with four sisters and four brothers. He was the second youngest overall.

O’Hearn started bodybuilding at age 7, taking after his father and three older brothers. By age 15, he began professionally competing in bodybuilding. He quickly garnered awards and trophies on a statewide level.

Despite battling dyslexia, O’Hearn achieved good grades in school and attended college, where he played football.

After college, he left home and headed to Los Angeles, California to pursue his dreams of a Hollywood career. Soon, the 6′ 1 1/2″ blond Adonis caught the eye of talent scouts and agents. For four years O’Hearn worked from gig to gig, garnering slight success.

michael o'hearn

A New Topaz Man

In 1994, O’ Hearn appeared on Joan River’s “Mr. Romance Cover Model Pageant.” Although he didn’t win first prize, his second-place finish brought him more attention from those within the industry.

Soon, his face and physique would be seen on shelves and racks in all kinds of stores.

In 1996, superstar Steve Sandalis was working overtime posing for Topaz’s many romance releases. In the 1990s, Topaz was a remarkably successful division of New American Library (NAL).

From a select group of models, the publishers chose three recruits. These men would have their images painted into steamy clinches for stepbacks and covers of romances.

Michael O’Hearn was among the chosen. He made his debut on Justine Dare’s Heart of the Hawk, a book I highly recommend.

michael o'hearn model
Heart of the Hawk, Justine Dare, Topaz, 1996,

Mary Anne Patalla, a publicist with Topaz noted, “We searched through many photographs of celebrity models and actors and loved Michael’s looks. When he came for an interview, I knew that he was special.”

“I am flattered and honored that I was chosen to portray the heroes for Topaz,” Mike O’Hearn said of his appointment to Topaz Man status in August 1996.

Michael O’Hearn, One Sexy Cover Model

While O’Hearn wasn’t as prolific a cover model as his Topaz predecessor, he certainly left a memorable mark in the industry!

For one racy snap, photographer Michel Legrou shot O’Hearn with two female models who posed separately with Mike as he sported nothing but black-colored briefs.

This made it appear as if he was fully naked in the Pino-illustrated cover for Denise Domning‘s A Love for All Seasons, released in December 1996.

a love for all seasons pino
A Love For All Seasons, Denise Domning, Topaz, 1996, Pino

Mike O’Hearn, Actor, BodyBuilder, Reality Star, Influencer

mike o'hearn

Television, Film & All-Around Media Sensation

Besides modeling, O’Hearn has made many impressions in other media. He famously was Team Captain “Titan” on the television series American Gladiators for many years.

An advocate of the natural approach to health and exercise, O’Hearn authored “Proven Techniques for Drug-Free Bodybuilders” to inspire and teach others to achieve success without the use of illegal performance enhancers.

In addition to American Gladiators, he has performed in Battle Dome and World Championship Wrestling. O’Hearn has starred in the films Keeper Of Time and Barbarian. On television, he has been seen on programs such as It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia and Days of Our Lives.

Plus, he has written and produced his own projects such as Alter Ego.

An Athlete at the Top of His Field

Michael O’Hearn is a well-rounded athlete with an amazing set of accomplishments perhaps only excelled by megastar bodybuilders such as Arnold Schwarzenegger and Lou Ferrigno. A martial artist with black belts in Judo, Tae Kwon Do, and Karate, O’Heaen is a former California Judo Champion.

He has earned the title of Iron Warrior in the Decathlon of Strength Strongman Champion. A four-time Mr. Universe, Mike O’Hearn is also a four-time California Power Lifting Champion and was Mr. Natural Universe, Mr. America, Mr. International, and Mr. World.

Not to mention, he was Model of The Year seven times!

In 2011 Mike was inducted into the Bodybuilding Hall of Fame and then into the Hall of Fame for Martial Arts in 2014.

Mike O’Hearn Today

At 53 years old, Mike O’Hearn defies time by appearing more fit and vigorous than most men half his age.

O’Hearn now trains clients from Hollywood executives to heavy hitters nationwide. When not training, the athlete/model/artist is busy writing, producing, acting, and directing his many projects.

He has appeared as a cover model on over 500 issues of various fitness, martial arts, and bodybuilding magazines. He has also posed for more than 100 romance novel covers.

Michael O’Hearn is married to female wrestler Midajah of World Championship Wrestling fame. He is also a devoted father and an admirer of Husky dogs.

michael o;hearn model

Michael O’Hearn Romance Covers

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