Interview with Stephanie Brother, Author of Four Always
02 Nov 2022
What’s the story behind the story? What inspired you to write Four Always?
Four Always started with an idea for a funny meet-cute: a young woman who was sheltered in her upbringing is making a bakery delivery to Club Red, a new male revue club that’s opened in her small touristy island town. The club turns out to be owned by four brothers who also dance and strip, and when they open the box she brings, she finds out it’s filled with small penis-shaped cookies intended for a bachelorette party. She’s dazzled by the men’s looks, but also supremely uncomfortable being surrounded by them while they make anatomy jokes.
If you had to pick theme songs for the main characters of Four Always, what would they be?
A silly answer is “Like a Virgin” by Madonna. My main character, Jade, isn’t a virgin, but she’s never experienced anything like she does after she meets the Stanton brothers. More seriously, I’d say “Beautiful” by Christina Aguilera, because as the story progresses, Jade, a plus-size woman, becomes aware of all of the negative thoughts about herself that have always filled her head (don’t we all have those?) and she learns to interrupt them as she realizes how beautiful and strong she is.
What’s your favorite genre to read? Is it the same as your favorite genre to write?
I’ve always been a big softie, which is why romance is, and always has been, my favorite genre to read and to write. Give me quirky characters in difficult situations and I’m hooked. Romance is both incredibly exciting and a great comfort, and that’s a powerful combination.
What books are on your TBR pile right now?
Unless I’m on vacation, it’s hard to find time to read. I’ve really gotten into audiobooks because they allow me to enjoy books while I’m doing things like driving, exercising, and cleaning.
In honor of October, I just finished listening to Cackle by Rachel Harrison. I’m in the middle of The Queen and the Cure by Amy Harmon, and Love on the Brain by Ali Hazelwood is next up.
What scene in your book was your favorite to write?
My shy heroine never thought she’d set foot in a strip club (her family highly disapproves!) so I loved writing about her not only going to Club Red, but being unexpectedly pulled up on stage by the Stanton brothers for a not-so-private lap dance. To soothe her nerves, she ends up getting drunk at the show, and that was a lot of fun to write.
Do you have any quirky writing habits? (lucky mugs, cats on laps, etc.)
In the summer, I love to write outdoors. I take my laptop to interesting places and get a lot of inspiration from people watching. In the winter, I have a thermos of chamomile tea that I keep on my desk, and a blanket with arms to keep me warm.
Do you have a motto, quote, or philosophy you live by?
Make the world a happier place.
If you could choose one thing for readers to remember after reading your book, what would it be?
A message that threads through all of my books is that love is powerful and love prevails. In Four Always specifically, and in many of my novels, I also hope readers get the message that they’re worthy of love, and of finding a man (or four men!) who treat them the way they deserve to be treated.
Stephanie Brother is the author of the new book Four Always
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