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Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Girls Heart Books Tour Stop: Valerie: Daughter of the Dragon



Before we begin I want to thank Girls Heart Books Tours for the blog stop and Mr. Fuller for the awesome post! It’s a pleasure! I was syked to see the list and it’s got some fabulous selections! Let’s begin! 


“Valerie: Daughter of the Dragon” is a unique love story. A sensual vampire romance that features adults forced to deal with their own insecurities as a supernatural world they never knew existed opens up and threatens to envelop them. On a broader scale, “Valerie” is about searching for your identity in a world you don’t understand.

The 13 songs I’ve chosen reflect not only sections of the story, but also emotional parts of the story as well. Each song has a special meaning to the plot, characters, and situations in the book. I spent a great deal of time choosing each song and how it lends itself to a particular scene in the book. Please, sit back, relax, and enjoy the music from, “Valerie: Daughter of the Dragon”

1. Witchy Woman (The Eagles) - When we first meet Valerie, our vampire protagonist, she is waking from her day of slumber. I wanted a song that conveys the image of a very beautiful, but dangerous woman as she paces her sleeping chamber. The sultry beat and fiery guitars reflects the movement as her limbs loosen up.

2. Williams Avenue (Quarterflash) - I wanted a song that contains an 80’s pop/jazz vibe to begin telling our mortal protagonist’s story. This song plays as Samantha makes her way to work during a late winter storm. The saxophone’s riffs fade in and out as Samantha recalls her childhood, and the tragedy surrounding her mother.

3. Make It with You (Bread) - This song conveys Samantha’s thoughts as she walks through the department store where she works. She is looking back on how far she has come and what she still wants out of life. The band Bread is used many times on this playlist because their songs convey a sense of longing and Samantha is a woman who longs for something or someone to complete her.

4. I Would Have Loved You More (Trisha Yearwood) Samantha meets Valerie and agrees to go to dinner with her. After dinner Valerie convinces Samantha to dance with her. The two take to the floor as this country-tinged love song sweeps in and carries the characters and the reader away. The tension between the two women grows to a fever pitch as the song fades.

5. Love Be Still (Trick Pony) - Heidi Newfield’s voice is perfect for a song about not wanting to let go when everything seems perfect. Valerie reveals herself as a vampire, and Samantha accepts her for what she is. Dawn approaches as Samantha and Valerie lie beneath a large tree in Samantha’s backyard. Samantha is afraid of letting Valerie go and this song is haunting in its imagery of that moment.

6. Avalon (Roxy Music) - Valerie’s relationship with Samantha grows, as does her purpose for coming to Lexington. Valerie meets Samantha’s sixteen-year old neighbor Sara. Sara is destined to lead a broken coven of witches, and it is up to Valerie to teach the girl the art of casting spells. Sara assumes the mystical name of Avalon. This song glides along as Valerie explains to her new student, and Samantha, about what it means to be a member of a vampire coven. The song has an almost ethereal sound to it that makes it really stand out.

7. Bohemia (Mae Moore) - The summer is nearly over, and the fashion show is just a few days away. Valerie decides to reward Samantha with a trip to her tropical island. This song perfectly captures Samantha’s days as she explores the island while Valerie is resting. The lyrics talk about the warmness of feeling at home. As Samantha wanders around Valerie’s island, she feels that could make this paradise her home.

8. Possession (Sarah McLachlan) - I chose this song for one important line, “and I would be the one, to hold you down, kiss you so hard, I’ll take your breath away.” Valerie and Samantha are making love on the beach when they realize that they must soon return to Lexington for the fashion show. In a sudden emotional outburst, Samantha becomes the aggressor and pins Valerie to the sand. Filled with images and an overall gothic vibe this song works on so many levels.

9. Victims (Culture Club) The celebratory after-show party is a mix of cultures and styles. Valerie introduces a mid-tempo Gothic band, and in front of the revelers asks Samantha to dance. Samantha agrees, but this time Valerie does not cast a spell that hides them from the onlookers as she did when they first went out. The two lovers share their first public kiss as this ballad rises and falls to match their dance.

10. Where Your Road Leads (Trisha Yearwood) - One of the most visual songs I used. Tragedy strikes after Samantha arrived home from the after-party. Valerie wakes from her slumber and informs Samantha that she must return to the castle. Confused and heartbroken, Samantha refuses to join her. Valerie begs her to reconsider, but relents and asks her to wait for her. Samantha and Valerie embrace, and then Valerie is gone. Samantha’s tears flow as she begs her beloved to return to her.

11. It Don’t Matter To Me (Bread) - Hurt, longing, and betrayal are all part of Samantha’s days since Valerie was forced to leave. It’s been nearly a month and fearing Valerie will never return, Samantha accepts Richard’s, her former lover, wedding proposal. The song flows in and out as she and Richard stand on the shore of the lake where only a month ago she and Valerie witnessed Sara’s ascension to coven Priestess.

12. Fade Into You (Mazzy Star) Contemplating her life, Samantha strolls through her house and reflects on her past. As the time passes, her loneliness grows until she makes a choice that will finally offer her some peace of mind. This song’s desperate and emotionally bare lyrics tear into the soul.

13. Diary (Bread) - Although written from the male perspective, this song is a fitting ending to the story. Valerie sits beneath the oak tree, where she and Samantha had spent so many nights making love. As a new day approaches, Valerie sits and waits for her lover to return. This song speaks about denying the love you feel for someone and the loss of those we hold so dear.

There you have the 13 songs that I hope will enhance your enjoyment of “Valerie: Daughter of the Dragon.” Music has always been important to me in setting the right mood and tone for the book. Finding these songs was very rewarding. If you’re so inclined, read through the book once without the music and then re-read the pages that accompany the songs and see if the passages take on a new and deeper meaning.

Thank you for sharing my sound and vision.

Robert Fuller

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