What to Read Wednesday with Amara Royce and giveaway

04 Jun

Happy Wednesday! Thank you for joining me for What to Read Wednesday. Today we have author Amara Royce in the hot seat. She’s sharing a her play list that she listened to while writing her latest release Always a Stranger. Afterward check out her cover and blurb and don’t forget to enter her great giveaway at the end of the post!!

Take it away Amara…


My Soundtrack for ALWAYS A STRANGER

In many ways, music serves as a tremendous inspiration for me. As I write, it helps to find songs that represent what I’m writing. Sometimes those songs come to mind unbidden, and I know exactly how they fit. Sometimes I’ll be listening to music in the car or on my laptop or while waiting in line for coffee, and a song will pop up that I don’t know but that fits a character or a scene so perfectly that I find myself digging a scrap of paper out of my purse so I can write down what I remember of it.

Here’s a sample of my writing soundtrack for ALWAYS A STRANGER. Some songs reflect specific characters, some reflect specific scenes, and some just capture overall themes and moods. In every case, hearing the music helps make the story more vivid for me, and I hope it does the same for you!

  • “Best Imitation of Myself” by Ben Folds Five – Hanako’s theme.
  • “Symphonie Fantastique” by Berlioz – This dramatic classical piece was written in 1830 and would possibly have been known to some characters in ALWAYS A STRANGER. Also, the backdrop of the novel is London’s Great Exhibition of 1851, and Berlioz had a role in evaluating instruments submitted to the Great Exhibition. So his work served as a great way to set my writing mood.
  • “Enjoy the Silence” by Depeche Mode – For me, this is related to a specific scene in the novel. See if you can figure out which one!
  • “Hurt” by Nine Inch Nails – For me, the tone of this song captures the situation of Hanako and her companions.
  • “Save Me” by Aimee Mann – what Hanako can’t bring herself to think, much less say.
  • “As Is” by Ani DiFranco – Skyler’s response to what Hanako doesn’t say
  • “Not Alone” by Sara Bareilles – another specific moment in the book
  • “Dream a Little Dream of Me” by Ella Fitzgerald and Louis Armstrong – Hanako and Skyler’s happy ending


When two worlds collide, anything is possible. . .

An international affair, London’s Great Exhibition has taken the city by storm. As its newest Royal Commissioner, Lord Skyler Ridgemont must ensure the performers are properly contracted. Among them is the delicate and graceful Hanako Sumaki. Draped in vivid silk robes, Hanako’s exotic Japanese fan dance captivates Skyler–and he longs to learn more about her. . .

But Hanako’s enigmatic employer keeps his exquisite charge very close. The consummate artist, she shows the handsome nobleman many faces, but never her true heart, which holds a desperate secret. When Skyler learns the real reason Hanako has been brought to London, he will risk his entire world to win her trust–and save her from losing both body and soul. It’s a feat that will require the type of courage only love can give. . .



Link to Follow Tour:


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Author Info

Amara Royce writes historical romances that combine her passion for 19th-century literature and history with her addiction to happily ever afters.

She earned a PhD in English, specializing in 19th-century British literature, from Lehigh University and a Master’s degree in English from Villanova University, and she now teaches English literature and composition at a community college in Pennsylvania.

When she isn’t writing, she’s either grading papers or reveling in her own happily ever after with her remarkably patient family. You can find her at


Author Links


*Amara is hosting a TOUR WIDE Rafflecopter Commenter Giveaway for Two Digital Copies of ALWAYS A STRANGER or $20.00 Amazon or B&N Gift Card*



Posted by on June 4, 2014 in What to Read Wednesday


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6 responses to “What to Read Wednesday with Amara Royce and giveaway

  1. ChristineWarner

    June 4, 2014 at 5:20 am

    Thank you for joining me today on What to Read Wednesday Amara. And I have to tell you I love your cover!

  2. Jennifer Lowery

    June 4, 2014 at 7:36 am

    I love listening to music while I write. And isn’t it interesting what songs inspire each of our stories! Great post and playlist! Beautiful cover, too 🙂

    • ChristineWarner

      June 4, 2014 at 4:58 pm

      Thanks for coming by Jennifer. I wish I could listen to music while I write…but I prefer quiet 🙂

  3. Tasty Book Tours

    June 4, 2014 at 8:50 am

    Thank you for hosting today!

  4. amararoyce

    June 4, 2014 at 2:54 pm

    Christine: Thanks so much for hosting me! I love the cover too and am really pleased with my publisher and the artists they use!

    Jennifer: Thanks! I find music helps me focus and set the right mood! Each character, each scene, each book is unique!


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