Monday, March 2, 2015

Monday Meme Spotlight: Music in Books

     I think we've all asked that question at least once in our lives. But even if we can't have automatic background music, we can read books that bring it to mind. There are a lot of books out there about rock stars and mellow kids with iPods and earbuds, but these are a few of my favorites. 

1. Amy and Roger's Epic Detour- Morgan Matson: This is an epic road trip, just like the title implies. Compete with playlists of real music and scrapbook-esque mementos of their journey across the county, this novel is fun, heartwarming, and makes you want an In-and-Out burger so bad you can almost taste it. It isn't all fluff, in case you were worried- Amy's father died in a car accident, and since then she hasn't been behind the wheel, so this is a journey epic in both the physical and mental fortitude she needs- with Roger's help- to overcome her past. 

2. Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist- Rachel Cohn and David Levithan: Nick needs a five-minute girlfriend. What he gets is a New York adventure fit for the big screen- fittingly, it's been made into a movie. It's two teens, just trying to figure out who they are and where the next great band will be playing. Told in alternating perspectives, this is the story of a love too big and bright for simple words- only music can make it real.

3. Just Listen- Sarah Dessen: Dessen is a master author. Her characters are commanding, funny, and so rounded that they feel like they jump out of the book and talk right to you. In Just Listen, we meet Owen, a guarded guy with a violent past and a love for music- all music, including weird chants and what sounds like water dripping- and Annabel, the girl who had everything, and then lost it. Together they rediscover what it means to have it all and how to live even when the world is crashing down, all while swallowed in the warm embrace of music, the music that keeps you together when everything is pulling you apart.
     Another of her novels, This Lullaby, is also centered around music- a cynical girl who finds herself caught up in the messy happiness of a musician.

4. Where She Went (If I Stay #2)- Gayle Forman: I didn't include If I Stay in this because while it does include music, it doesn't focus on it to the extent that Where She Went does. Where She Went takes place years after its predecessor, and we find Mia, single, in the midst of an uprising cello career and Adam in the throes of stardom. It's their journey back to each other to find the closure that they need for their lives to move on after the accident, set against the backdrop of New York's music scene. It's a heart-wrenching novel that sings true to the picture of love and loss that Forman paints in all her writing.  

     No matter what your taste in books, there's something out there for everyone. And if you don't like books, but you love music, one of these picks, or any that revolve around music, are a great transition into the world of writing.

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