Archive for the ‘Playlists’ Category

The Mistletoe Mix!

Monday, December 23rd, 2013

I’ve been a little bit behind updating the Pink Carnation Playlists here on the website. (I petered out around The Temptation of the Night Jasmine, although there’s a half-finished one for Blood Lily in a file on my computer somewhere.)

But, courtesy of Lorri, just in time for Christmas, we have… the Mistletoe Playlist!

Huge thanks to Lorri for putting this together. You can play the “Of Wallflowers and Vegetables” fan mix here (how much do I love that title?), or if you just want to check out the song list, you can find it here.

Which songs would you recommend for Turnip and Arabella?

The wonderful Lorri has also put together a mix for Mary and Vaughn… but I’ll save that one until after the holidays.

Merry, merry, all!



The Night Jasmine Playlist

Monday, January 4th, 2010

The paperback of The Temptation of the Night Jasmine comes out tomorrow! In honor of Night Jasmine‘s imminent release, we have the Night Jasmine Playlist:

Head Over Heels, The Go-Go’s.

Doesn’t “head over heels” perfectly describe Charlotte’s reaction to Robert at the beginning of the book? In the music video, while the band sings, “I waited so long, so long to play this part….” the video cuts to a woman reading a romance novel. That’s our Charlotte!

I Need a Hero, Bonnie Tyler.

Who doesn’t? But Charlotte, more than most, is looking for a hero. And Robert so very badly wants to be one for her….

Underground, David Bowie.

Maybe it’s Charlotte’s thing for unicorns—and the fact that, in many ways, this is a novel about growing up and trading illusions for realities—but pretty much the whole Labyrinth soundtrack says Night Jasmine for me, and this song in particular. “Don’t tell me truth hurts, little girl/ ‘Cause it hurts like hell”. (Plus, I just love David Bowie as the goblin king. ‘Nuff said.)

World Before Columbus, Suzanne Vega.

This, more than any of the others, is the song that sums up the first half of Night Jasmine for me. It’s the quintessential ballad of love lost, of men going off on their own quests, abandoning the affection that might have been. “They’ll never know the gold or the copper in your hair.” Or in Charlotte’s hair, as the case may be.

In the Rough, Anna Nalick.

If World Before Columbus is Charlotte in the first half of the book, this is Charlotte in the second half—resilient and defiant. It’s very much a “you go, girl!” song. It was time she learned she could sparkle on her own.

Where in the World, The Secret Garden.

All the songs so far have been very Charlotte-centric, but this one, from The Secret Garden musical, is for Robert. It’s the plaintive cry of a man haunted by lost love. “Where in the world, tell me, where in the world/ Can I live without your love?” It still sends shivers down my spine.

Alexander’s Feast, Georg Friedrich Handel.

Happy, happy, happy pair!
None but the brave,
None but the brave,
None but the brave deserves the fair.

Do you have any good Charlotte and Robert songs to add to the list? (As you can see, I could use help on the Robert side of things.) When I post the lists to the Diversions page, I’ll be adding a “Readers Recommend” section to each list. So please recommend away!



The Crimson Rose Playlist

Tuesday, December 15th, 2009

I’ll be posting the Night Jasmine playlist in January, just in time for the release of the paperback. In the meantime, though, we have a very different set of songs for Mary and Vaughn:

What’s Love Got to Do With It, Tina Turner

Let’s face it. This is basically Mary and Vaughn’s anthem. I can just hear them singing it in dueling keys.

Not Your Year, The Weepies

My wonderful little sister made me a mellow mix for working that included several Weepies songs. The title of the mix? The But I DO Love You More Than JQ! Mix. There had been some sisterly discussion about a certain sibling naming someone else her favorite author. Hmph. But she made up for it with the mix, which I listened to on infinite repeat while working on Crimson. This song fit Mary’s mood at the beginning of Crimson Rose perfectly, especially that line that goes, “While you wonder/What else you’re doing wrong….”

Hazy Shade of Winter, Simon & Garfunkel

All of my other books, up until Crimson, took place during the summer. They were bright, happy, sunlit sort of things. Crimson Rose was an autumn book in more ways than one. It begins in October of 1803, as the days are getting shorter, darker and colder. I wrote Crimson during the autumn and winter of 2006, seeing the sky tinted gray through my office window, listening to random shuffle on my ipod as I did doc review. This song came up again and again, and seemed to fit the book, the weather, and my mood.

You’re So Vain, Carly Simon

I know, I know. But, really, it was too Vaughn not to add. He probably does think this song is about him.

Water Music/ Music for the Royal Fireworks, Handel

This plays in my head every time Vaughn’s barge sails down the Thames. Ever since Black Tulip, I’ve heard a flourish from it every time Vaughn steps into a room. Trust Vaughn to choose music composed for a king as his theme song.

Do you have any good Mary and Vaughn songs to add to the list? When I post the lists to the Diversions page in January, I’ll be adding a “Readers Recommend” section to each list. So please recommend away!



The Emerald Ring Playlist

Monday, November 30th, 2009

As we struggle out of our turkey comas, here’s the Emerald Ring playlist to get you up and dancing– or running off to Ireland with a group of spies in knee breeches. Take your pick.

Follow You Down, Gin Blossoms

If following Geoff to Ireland doesn’t count, I don’t know what does.

As you may have noticed, I have a thing for soundtracks. It’s like a mix tape you didn’t have to mix yourself. I listened to the How to Lose a Guy in Ten Days soundtrack a lot while writing Emerald Ring. Like, really, a lot. So if you notice a whole bunch of songs from that soundtrack on this list… there’s a reason for that.

Weight of the World, Chantal Kreviazuk

Given Letty’s propensity for carrying the weight of the world—or, at least, the Alsworthy household—this song struck me as very appropriate.

And, yes, it was on the How to Lose a Guy in Ten Days soundtrack.

We Could Still Belong Together, Lisa Loeb

Something about the optimism of this just says “Letty” for me—even though it’s not on the How to Lose a Guy soundtrack.

Candide, Leonard Bernstein & Stephen Sondheim

When I wasn’t listening to How to Lose a Guy in Ten Days, my most played CD while working on Emerald Ring was the musical version of Candide. There’s nothing like a little Voltaire and a little Bernstein, all rolled up with trills. Of all my characters, Geoff has always struck me as the most in tune with the Enlightenment (despite his propensity for writing bad poetry). If he’s a Quod Erat Demonstrandum kind of guy, then Letty is definitely a Best of All Possible Worlds sort of girl.

I’m No Angel, Dido.

It was a toss-up between this and White Flag. I listened to both Dido CDs a fair amount while writing Emerald Ring (they make good, mellow evening writing music, as opposed to peppy daytime writing music), but something about the tone of No Angel is more Letty and Geoff to me, as both of them come to grips with the fact that they’re not actually perfect.

Do you have any good Letty and Geoff songs to add to the list? When I post the lists to the Diversions page in January, I’ll be adding a “Readers Recommend” section to each list. So please recommend away!



The Black Tulip Playlist

Thursday, October 1st, 2009

Happy October! To usher in the new month, we have the Black Tulip Playlist:

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Pink Carnation Playlist

Sunday, September 13th, 2009

A couple of weeks ago, I was bopping along on the elliptical instrument of torture at the gym when I Ran by Flock of Seagulls came on the 80’s music channel (listening to peppy music at the gym is the only way I can get myself to go). The lyrics, which I had never really thought about before, were so perfect for Penelope that I was staggered. Literally.

Once I regained my balance and untangled myself from my headphones, I got to thinking about the music that had resonated for me while I was writing the other five books. All of the books, for whatever reason, have had their own signature songs, some of which make sense, and some of which, quite frankly, are more than a little random. For example, while I was writing Black Tulip, I listened to tons of Bach. I still have no idea what Bach had to do with Henrietta and Miles, but, for some reason, it worked for them. (I wrote a post about all this on Access Romance).

Thus the Pink Carnation Playlist Project was born.

Every month, I’ll be posting a playlist for a different book, finishing up with Blood Lily just in time for its debut. Once all are done, they will be permanently available on the website, hopefully with links to iTunes, if I can figure out how to do that.

So, without further ado, here’s my playlist for The Secret History of the Pink Carnation:

I Want You to Want Me, Letters to Cleo.

I love soundtracks. They’re like having a mix tape with none of the bother of having to mix one. While I was writing Pink I, I was a little obsessed with the Ten Things I Hate About You soundtrack. This song, to me, just screamed Amy—it had her verve, her impetuousness, and it was great for getting up and dancing around the computer.

Cruel To Be Kind, Letters to Cleo

Yep, more Letters to Cleo. The title sounds like something Miss Gwen would say (and does, at one point), but also fits quite well with Richard’s philosophy of life. Silly Richard.

Enjoy the Silence, Depeche Mode.

Richard and Amy in the study. ‘Nuff said. I’ve always loved this song. There’s something very dark, seductive, and powerful about it.

Please Forgive Me, David Gray.

Please forgive me if I act a little strange? Hmph. Just because a man has a dual identity….

One Girl Revolution, Superchic[k].

Hell hath no fury like an Amy scorned. Hurrying to finish Pink I in the late spring of 2003, I moved on from the Ten Things I Hate About You soundtrack to Legally Blonde (gearing up for law school in the fall). The defiant tone of the music perfectly suited Amy.

Do you have any good Richard and Amy songs to add to the list? When I post the lists to the Diversions page in January, I’ll be adding a “Readers Recommend” section to each list. So please recommend away!