Posted in Books, Geeky Stuff, Music

My Favorite Music References in YA Literature

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If there’s one thing I love as much as books and reading, it’s probably music. I was raised in a family of wonderful music nerds, and as a result, music has grown to be an integral aspect of my life.

And so, it always brings me a rush of joy whenever I find music references hidden inside books I love, and by proxy, authors with similar musical taste. I thought I might compile a few of my favorite books with music references in them, just for fun.

THE BLACK BEAST LIVES! - HalfGuarded

 

  1. The Strange Fascinations of Noah Hypnotik, David Arnold

Amazon.com: The Strange Fascinations of Noah Hypnotik ...

Artists referenced: David Bowie, brief joke about Wilco/Jeff Tweedy

I mean, one can sort of tell from the get-go that this book is very Bowie-centric; The title itself (a reference to a lyric from “Changes”), and the Aladdin Sane lightning bolt in the ‘I’ in “Fascinations”. (On another edition, it shows Noah with the bolt across his face, just like the Aladdin Sane album cover!) Other than that, there’s a continual respect for Bowie throughout the novel. Other than the general wondrousness of the novel, I’m just glad to see that someone else holds Hunky Dory as highly as I do.

Also, the mention of Wilco is very brief, but it was still pretty funny to see. Even if it was poking fun at them.

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2. The Hazel Wood, Melissa Albert

Amazon.com: The Hazel Wood: A Novel (9781250297327): Albert ...

Artists referenced: The Beatles, Nirvana, T.Rex, (!!!), David Bowie

Though music doesn’t play (no pun intended) as big a role in The Hazel Wood as it does in some of the others in this post, there’s wonderful references aplenty in this one, from a minor character being described as reminiscent of David Bowie to a discordant, chaotic scene in which the main villain sings an off-key rendition of “Yellow Submarine”. Also, I’m frankly so impressed that Albert slipped in a T.Rex reference in there. COME. ON. That’s the deep cut to end all deep cuts!

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3. The Final Six and The Life Below, Alexandra Monir

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Artists referenced: Radiohead

Weirdly enough, though I’d heard Radiohead here and there before reading The Final Six,  but seeing the reference was ultimately what convinced me to listen to Radiohead! This is easily some of the best utilization of references I’ve seen in a novel, period. First off, in The Final Six, there’s a particularly chilling scene in which Beckett, the main antagonist, glimpses Naomi sneaking around, and after a tense conversation, he sings part of “Paranoid Android.” (“When I am king, you will be first against the wall/With your opinion, which is of no consequence at all…”) Already veeeery spooky, but the song’s title hints that Beckett knows more than what he let on. (No spoilers)

In The Life Below, Monir also uses “Sail To The Moon”–in particular, its musical structure–as the center point of one of the main subplots in the novel. And boy, it’s FASCINATING.

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4. The Looking Glass, Janet McNally

The Looking Glass - Janet McNally - Hardcover

Artists referenced: St. Vincent, David Bowie, Fleetwood Mac (I don’t really care about the latter at all, but hey)

Another dip into the realm of magical realism!

Music plays a semi-important role in this one, as part of the novel is set on a road trip; there’s a running joke where Sylvie’s friend’s brother (I can’t remember his name for the life of me) listens to one specific artist in the car for the month. His pick of the month is Fleetwood Mac; there’s a line (which I can’t find) where Sylvie makes a remark something along the lines of “why can’t we listen to something good, like David Bowie?” to which the other character responds that he’d already listened to him for all of April. And though the St. Vincent reference was brief, McNally perfectly captures the nature of her music.

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5. Ziggy, Stardust, and Me, James Brandon

Ziggy, Stardust and Me by James Brandon: 9780525517641 ...

Artists referenced: David Bowie, Pink Floyd

Again, another Bowie-centric book. I related to this one in particular because Bowie is Jonathan (the main character)’s hero; the book is set in 1973, so it’s at the heyday of his Ziggy Stardust era. As someone who similarly worships him, this novel hit the sweet spot for me. There’s also a wonderful scene where Jonathan and Web soundtrack a school presentation with Pink Floyd’s “Time”, easily my personal favorite of their songs.

David bowie GIF on GIFER - by Kirindis

 

HONORABLE MENTIONS: 

 

So what do you lovely people think? What are some music references in literature that you love? Tell me in the comments! 

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Since I’ve already posted today, head over to today’s Goodreads Monday to see today’s song.

 

Have a wonderful day, and take care of yourselves!

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Posted in Book Tags, Books

The Dreamy Book Covers Book Tag

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Happy Thursday, bibliophiles! Hope that all is well in your world!

While looking for tags to do, I found this one at Not-so-modern girl. The tag was originally created by Tiana @ The Book Raven. I have a whole shelf on Goodreads dedicated to covers I love, so this one should be fun…

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Rules:

1. Thank the lovely person who tagged you, spread the love!

2. Mention Tiana @ The Book Raven as the creator of this book tag

3. Use the original tag image in your post. (However, feel free to add whatever other graphics your heart desires)

4. Tag at least 1 fellow blogger for this tag

5. List the rules

 

Here we go…

 

“NO IDEAS BUT IN THINGS”: A Book Cover that Perfectly Expresses the Novel Inside of It

Amazon.com: The Hazel Wood: A Novel (9781250297327): Albert ...

The Hazel Wood‘s cover is filled to the brim with gorgeous little fairytale Easter eggs, all of which eventually turn up somewhere in the book!

“SUGARY SWEET”: A Cute Cover that is So Fluffy You Want to Give it a Hug

Amazon.com: I Wish You All the Best (9781338306125): Deaver, Mason ...

The cover for I Wish You All the Best is so lovely on so many levels…GIVE THEM HUGS

GIF: Hugs! by Cindy Suen on Dribbble

 

“THE SIMPLE AESTHETIC”: A Book that Stuns with the Most Minimalistic of Designs

 

Stranger in a Strange Land (Penguin Galaxy) (Hardcover) | Sandman ...

There’s several different editions of Stranger in a Strange Land out there, but this is the one that I borrowed at the library. The letters were shiny, too…isn’t it just so pretty?

You are pretty GIFs - Get the best GIF on GIPHY

 

“COVER ENVY”:  A Book Cover that You Wish You Had on your Shelf, but Don’t

Amazon.com: The Final Six (9780062658944): Monir, Alexandra: Books

The Final Six is one of those books that I deeply regret borrowing from the library…SO GOOD…I WANT TO OWN IT…

Also, on an unrelated note, I think this book might be what ultimately pushed me to listen to all of Radiohead’s OK Computer. There’s this really creepy scene where one of the characters quotes a line from “Paranoid Android” (“When I am king/You will be first against the wall…”), and though I’d heard Radiohead before, this was what ultimately convinced me.

 

“TRAVELLING ABROAD”: A Book Cover Featuring a Country Outside of Your Own

White Rose: Wilson, Kip: 9781328594433: Amazon.com: Books

The cover doesn’t necessarily show it, but White Rose is set in World War II-era Germany.

 

“THE COLOR WHEEL”: A Book Cover that Showcases One of Your Favorite Colors

Even the Darkest Stars : Heather Fawcett : 9780062463395

Teal and turquoise are my favorite colors, and the cover of Even the Darkest Stars is dominated by both, luckily for me!

 

“SWITCHING GEARS”: A Cover Change you Absolutely Adore

Amazon.com: Carry On (Simon Snow Series) (9781250135025): Rowell ...

I think they switched the Carry On cover for the paperback edition, and I am SO HERE FOR IT! I mean, what could go wrong with Kevin Wada’s gorgeous art?

 

“AND THE WINNER IS…”: Which Book Cover Mentioned Above is Your Favorite? 

Oh man…

Amazon.com: The Hazel Wood: A Novel (9781250297327): Albert ...

I think I’m gonna have to go with The Hazel Wood! 

 

I TAG: 

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Today’s song:

(Guess who put on her Nostalgia playlist…)

 

That’s it for this book tag! Have a wonderful day, and take care of yourselves!

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Posted in Books, Weekly Updates

Weekly Update: January 20-26, 2020

Happy Sunday, everyone! Hope you all had a great week 🙂

After last week’s lethargy, I’ve gotten back on track for my reading challenge of 250 books. (I’m at 18 so far) I crossed several books off of my TBR that’ve been there for a while, and plus, I won’t have to make any excuses for not yet reading Watchmen. (!!!) And speaking of which, I started watching the HBO adaptation of Watchmen, and I ADORE IT so far! I mean, I’m only 3 episodes, in, but…

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And, I hit 100 followers! Yay!

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WHAT I READ THIS WEEK:

Blue Monday, vol. 1: The Kids are Alright-Chynna Clugston Flores (⭐️⭐️⭐️)

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Eliza and Her Monsters–Francesca Zappia (⭐️⭐️.5)

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The Night Country (The Hazel Wood, #2)–Melissa Albert (⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️)

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Watchmen–Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons (⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️)

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Anya’s Ghost–Vera Brosgol (⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️)

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POSTS AND SUCH:

 

SONGS:

 

CURRENTLY READING/TO READ NEXT WEEK:

Gravemaidens-Kelly Coon

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Foundation–Isaac Asimov

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OCD, The Dude, and Me–Lauren Roedy Vaughn

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From a Certain Point of View (Star Wars anthology)–Elizabeth Schaefer

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Today’s song:

 

That just about wraps up this week of blogging! Have a great rest of your day, and take care of yourselves!

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Posted in Book Tags, Books

Get To Know Ya Book Tag

Happy New Year, bibliophiles!

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I found this tag on A Little Haze Book Blog, and I’m so excited to take part! Let’s begin, shall we?

 

FAVORITE BOOK OF ALL TIME

Oooh…hard decision, but if I had to pick, I’d go with Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein. I read it a little under two years ago for the first time, and it’s never left my thoughts since.

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FAVORITE BOOK FIVE YEARS AGO

The entire Search for WondLa trilogy captured my heart around middle school, but my favorite of the three was the beautifully written (and illustrated) and shocking finale, The Battle for WondLa. 

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FAVORITE DUOLOGY/TRILOGY/SERIES

Hands down, Ashley Poston’s masterful Heart of Iron duology. Both books are so lovable in every sense of the word.

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LAST BOOK YOU READ

I’ll be reviewing this one later, but I just finished up Supernova, the last installment in Marissa Meyer’s Renegades trilogy. Such a stunning end to the series!

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LAST POETRY BOOK YOU READ

I bought a collection of Tennyson’s poetry in April, I think. Such remarkable and heartstring-tugging words…In Memoriam was probably my favorite.

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WHAT BOOK MOST INFLUENCED YOUR LIFE?

Alright, sorry, I know I keep coming back to this, but The Search for WondLa was not only my gateway to my favorite genre, science fiction, but what inspired me to be an author. Tony DiTerlizzi will never stop being my hero, just for that series alone.

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BOOK THAT MADE YOU UGLY CRY

Yeeeeeeeesh, A Monster Calls SLAYED me when I first read it. I had to re-read it over twice, and both times, I ended up bawling my eyes out at the end. GOD. 😭

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BOOK THAT MADE YOU LAUGH

Good Omens, without a doubt. I don’t think a book has made me laugh as much as that in a very long time.

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CHARACTER YOU’D LIKE TO BE FOR A DAY 

Hmm…the first character that came to mind was Alosa from Daughter of the Pirate King duology.Oh, to be a fearsome pirate queen on the high seas (with fabulous hair)…

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BOOK SO GOOD YOU DREAMT ABOUT IT

I can’t quite think of any books that come to mind other than WondLa, and I’ve already mentioned that one in two of the questions, so…sorry about that.

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BOOK YOU DNF’D

Oh, there’s a long, long list…

But the most recent book I DNF’d was Lifestyles of Gods and Monsters. Such an interesting concept for a plot, but the dialogue made it crash and burn. Curse you, deceptively gorgeous cover…

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WHAT BOOK ARE YOU EXCITED TO READ?

I loved The Hazel Wood, and I just found out that the sequel, The Night Country, will be released on January 7th! REJOICE!

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That just about wraps it up! If you’d like to do the tag, feel free to do so. Please be sure to link back to this post if you do so 🙂

 

Today’s song: “One and a Half Stars”–Wilco (listening to this as I wrap up this post!)

 

Have a lovely rest of your day, and take care of yourselves!

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Posted in Book Review Tuesday

Book Review Tuesday (1/1/19)-The Hazel Wood

Hi, everyone, and welcome to the FIRST BOOK REVIEW TUESDAY OF 2019! WE MADE IT! HAPPY NEW YEAR, EVERYONE!!!

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This book was one of my last reads of 2018, and part of my *sniffle* last library haul of that year as well. I’d heard some rave reviews (mostly from EpicReads), and I almost bought it at Barnes and Noble, but, alas, still in hardback, and therefore, more expensive than a book of that size really should be. I finally got around to checking it out last week, and I was AMAZED. My expectations were average, but The Hazel Wood was well above-average.

Enjoy the review!

 

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The Hazel Wood

Alice Proserpine has lived her whole life on the run. Her grandmother is a recluse, the author of a renowned fairy tale book, Tales from the Hinterland, and her mother seems to run into bad luck wherever they roam. But when Alice receives news that her grandmother has passed away, she decides to set off to uncover the truth about why she really hid herself away. The Hazel Wood, the secluded house where she lived out most of her adulthood, has never been found by the public, but with the help of some of her grandmother’s most devoted fans, she finds some vital clues about its location. But what she finds there is stranger than she could have ever imagined…

 

 

WOW.

The Hazel Wood was immensely better than I expected it to be. The mix of realistic fiction and fairytale fantasy blended together perfectly, making for a chilling, masterfully crafted gem of a book. Incredibly creative, with unique and fierce characters and a twisted plot to match. Not only that, but there were a bunch of wonderful and hilarious pop culture references thrown in at the most perfect of times-everything from Star Wars to David Bowie to Nirvana to T. Rex.

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We know there’s a sequel coming some time this year, but it has yet to be titled or have a cover reveal. The author has also hinted at the release of Tales from the Hinterland somewhere down the line, too…OOH…

 

All in all, spectacular book. Would probably land a solid 9 on my book rating scale.

 

Well, I hope you all have a happy, happy new year, and a great rest of your day! Thanks for reading this post, and take care of yourselves! (And for those of you in temperatures like the one’s I’m in, please stay warm. It was -2 degrees around midnight last night.)