The Music in the Pages




Each book has a playlist with the songs that filled my head with scenes to write. I could tell you about each one because I love them all dearly but most people don’t want to read that long. I picked narrowed it down to my absolute favorites.

You can find a full listing of the songs that inspired me from each book on my webpage


Freak Like Me

by Halestorm

So shout if you’re a freak like me,
You were born to burn,
This is no disease you don’t need a cure!
It’s our time now to come out!
If you’re a freak like me!
If you’re a freak like me!

We’re underground but we will not surrender,
We’re gonna give them something to remember, yeah,
So write your name in gasoline,
And set that shit on fire

Why this song?

 Rachel’s anthem. LOL! I always wanted Rachel to be the sort of person that takes the bad with the good and moves forward. If she wallowed in self-pity and woe is me the book would have never gone anywhere. She has an initial panic attack before accepting the changes inside her but ultimately she jumps on board the freak train. Scratch that, she hijacked the freak train. Instead of trying to get back what you lost, focus on what else you have to lose.

Not Strong Enough

by Apocalyptica ft. Brent Smith

I’m not strong enough to stay away.
Can’t run from you
I just run back to you.
Like a moth I’m drawn in to your flame,
Say my name, but it’s not the same.
You look in my eyes, I’m stripped of my pride.
And my soul surrenders, and you bring my heart to its knees.

And it’s killin’ me when you’re away, I wanna leave and I wanna stay.
And I’m so confused, So hard to choose.
Between the pleasure and the pain.
And I know it’s wrong, and I know it’s right.
Even if I try to win the fight, my heart would overrule my mind.
And I’m not strong enough to stay away

I’m not strong enough to stay away
What can I do
I would die without you
In your presence my heart knows no shame
I’m not to blame
Cause you bring my heart to its knees

Why this song?

Oh, Bastien. My first hero. I didn’t want to draw out the insta love angle of the plot but it’s there if you look for it. He feels a magnetic pull to Rachel he can’t fight. Doesn’t want to fight. It’s not a love that makes you weak but one that makes you stronger. Bastien was born to be an alpha. He’s been happy leading a care free life until Rachel crashes into his life. Almost literally. Besides the beautiful instrumental work by Apocalyptica there is also vocals by Brent Smith. I love his voice. The whole song is just beautiful.

premade exclusive book cover 351 Ebook
When the Darkness Comes
by Colbie Caillat
Now the door is open
The world I knew is broken
There’s no return
Now my heart is not scared
Just knowing that you’re out there
Watching me
So believe I’ll be here waiting
Hoping, praying that
This light will guide you home
When you’re feeling lost I’ll leave my love
Hidden in the sun
For when the darkness comes

Why this song?

Gotta be cryptic here if you haven’t read Rising Shadows and Winter’s kiss. Winter’s Kiss isn’t a full book but rather a novella to tie up some loose threads in Rising Shadows. The couple in WK are lost without each other. They can’t be together the way they want to and nowhere else in the world feels like home. It’s a song for knowing the person you love is there even when you can’t be with them.

Running up that hill
by Placebo
‘C’mon, baby, c’mon, c’mon, darling,
Let me steal this moment from you now.
C’mon, angel, c’mon, c’mon, darling,
Let’s exchange the experience, oh…’

And if I only could,
Make a deal with God,
And get him to swap our places,
Be running up that road,
Be running up that hill,
With no problems [x2]

Why this song?

Watching the person you love hurt or go through harrowing trials is rough. You wish you could take their place and bear it for them. In Winter’s Kiss the hero would give anything to be the one doing all the dangerous work. When I heard Running Up That Hill I could see him eagerly diving head first into the fray with a smile on his face if it meant she was safe.

Scarlet Fury

Safe and Sound 

Cover by Madilyn Bailey

I remember tears streaming down your face
When I said, “I’ll never let you go”
When all those shadows almost killed your light
I remember you said, “Don’t leave me here alone”
But all that’s dead and gone and passed tonight

Just close your eyes
The sun is going down
You’ll be alright
No one can hurt you now
Come morning light
You and I’ll be safe and sound

Why this song?

I know this song was a popular Taylor Swift song but I heard it for the first time as a cover by Madilyn Bailey. Her voice is soothing and the song is soothing. It’s a perfect fit. The words came out and smacked me in the face. “Hey! This is perfect Cleary and Mads song. It’s like Cleary freakin’ wrote if FOR Mads. Make a note, scribe.”

Yeah, my muse is kind of bossy and rude.

Cleary’s desire to make Mads comfortable, to be a part of her life, to keep her protected and happy for the rest of her life is very powerful. He feels like he failed her, of course he didn’t but it was a traumatizing experience for him too. Mads started out in the series so naive and a little immature. She ends up coming into her womanhood and maturity but only after suffering. Cleary wants to pack her up in bubble wrap and keep her at his house forever to make sure she never feels scared again. Mads ain’t going for that plan but a Lion can dream.


by Gemini Syndrome

Look at the wake
From the stardust pouring from your eyes
It’s no mistake
You are perfect
You are perfect in my mind
And you won’t fade away

Why this song?

Another Cleary song. Mads doesn’t see herself the way Cleary does. Her own self image is damaged and she feels like people pity her. Cleary still sees the same Mads. Actually, that’s not right. He sees a stronger, braver Mads he couldn’t love more if he tried.


by Ms Mr

I found you in pieces you’d been torn apart
A million one reasons to end before you start
But deep down I knew
No matter what in the end, it’d be me and you
Big teeth small kiss
I turn to wax and melt like this
Melt like this

Why this song?

When it came time to write the love scene for Cleary and Mads I had a very particular way I wanted it to go. You’d think steamy would be my goal but for these two I wanted more. They’d been through so much as a couple and I wanted to portray the tender side of intimacy. Hearts and souls connecting. What I learned was that level of commitment to one another is actually pretty hot to read and write. Ms Mr’s song BTSK has that slower, sensual feel to it and the lyrics are actually pretty great for what I wanted as well. There are some subtle lines and then you have the all out WOW lines that make you melt into a puddle.

Caress my knees with your tongue
Teeth on my waist I come undone
It’s those hours in the night just before a light
Run your hand down my spine
We kiss the dusk goodnight’

With likes the those who doesn’t need to fan themselves?

Through the Ghost

by Shinedown

So many silent sorrows
You never hear from again
And now that you’ve lost tomorrow
Is yesterday still a friend?

All the bridges we built were burned
Not a single lesson was learned
Everything that mattered is just
A city of dust
Covering both of us

Did you hide yourself away?
I can’t see you anymore
Did you eclipse another day?
I used to wake up to the colour of your soul

Did you hide yourself away?
Are you living through the ghost?
Did you finally find a place
Above the shadows so the world will never know?
The world will never know you like I do

Why this song?

Two friends face off in A Scarlet Fury. They were the very best of friends, the kind of closeness that people don’t fully understand. Then they find themselves on opposite sides of the divide. You witness their friendship crumble on the pages and realize they’ll never get back what they had. Looking at someone you knew better than yourself and suddenly seeing a stranger. *sniffle* Hits me in heart every time.


Under a very black sky

by The Sick Puppies

I have a dream you had a weapon
I couldn’t see it in the dark of the night
It’s easy to hide under a very black sky
Over the moon just beyond seven
I watched in vain as the missiles took flight
We lost our lives under a very black sky

Why this song?

Elisavet’s transformation into a vampire isn’t an easy one. Under a Very Black Sky is a somber and yet sweeping song that mirrors the turmoil in Elisavet’s last moments as a human.

Still here

by Digital Daggers

Every night, I dream you’re still here.
The ghost by my side, so perfectly clear.
When I awake, you’ll disappear,
Back to the shadows
With all I hold dear.
With all I hold dear.
I dream you’re still here.
I dream you’re still here.

Why this song?

Poor Varian. The things he wants are ever slipping farther from his grasp. In dreams you can pretend you still have the things you lost and when you wake up you spend a few seconds actually believing you got it all back. The dreams fade away into smoke and you’re left to go through the loss all over again.

Heart is a Hole

by Cherri Bomb

What do you do when
The truth was a lie all along?
Where do you turn to
When you find the rights were always wrong?

All this dying I went through to live for you

And now my heart is just a hole
An empty space
That used to belong to you
But now
Now that you’re gone
My soul’s turned cold
Nothing to fill this heart that’s a hole

Why this song?

Tsura. Girlfriend gets hurt bad. That’s not a spoiler because thus far in the series when hasn’t Tsura been hurt by the actions of others? I mean, she needs to lay down the law. Heart is a Hole is a last straw song. You’ve finally reached the point when your heart has been chipped away at until nothing is left. It’s a hauntingly beautiful song to listen.

The Story

by Brandi Carlile

All of these lines across my face
Tell you the story of who I am
So many stories of where I’ve been
And how I got to where I am
But these stories don’t mean anything
When you’ve got no one to tell them to
It’s true… I was made for you
I climbed across the mountain tops
Swam all across the ocean blue
I crossed all the lines and I broke all the rules
But baby I broke them all for you
Because even when I was flat broke
You made me feel like a million bucks
You do and I was made for you

Why this song?
Manias is good at inducing the swoon. He knows when he’s found something special and Elisavet is special. Like many ballads that came before it The Story is laying it all out on the table. Everything in my life was leading me to you. BOOM! Bring the swoon.
Arsonist’s Lullaby
by Hozier
When I was a child, I’d sit for hours
Staring into open flame
Something in it had a power,
Could barely tear my eyes away
All you have is your fire…
And the place you need to reach –
Don’t you ever tame your demons
But always keep ’em on a leash

Why this song?
One chapter is told from the POV of Ianthe. If you’ve read the book you know the significance of the chapter I am taking about. Who is this song for? The only one who made it out. No spoilers! I can say no more.

2 thoughts on “The Music in the Pages

  1. I LOVE how you combine the music and your words.. Its awesome. And I’m down with all of your choices I can see hwo they fit and work and it just adds a great spectrum to the whole thing.


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