Book Recap – In Song! is a monthly feature where I create and share a playlist inspired by the books I read during the previous month.
1) The Song: “Disarm” by Smashing Pumpkins
The Book: Charm & Strange by Stephenie Kuehn
When “Disarm” came on the radio the day after I finished Charm & Strange, I got goosebumps. The song seems made for Kuehn’s novel, with its raw sound and lyrics that tell a story of vulnerability, rage, and pain. As the chorus says: “I used to be a little boy / so old in my shoes / And what I choose is my voice / What’s a boy supposed to do?”
2) The Song: “A Twist in My Story” by Secondhand Serenade
The Book: Black City by Elizabeth Richards
I’ve always loved this song, and I think it’s a great fit for Black City. Its lyrics marvel over what it’s like to fall in love – how it feels like waking up at last, like your heart is finally beating and nothing in the world can stand in your way.
3) The Song: “Knocked Up” by Kings of Leon
The Book: Hooked by Catherine Greenman
Like Hooked, “Knocked Up” is about a young couple who find out they’re pregnant and decide to keep their baby. The couple in the song are scared but defiant – they’re determined to make their decision work but realize just how daunting that task will be.
4) The Song: “Vampire” by Antsy Pants
The Book: Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead
I chose this song more less for the lyrics and more for the overall tone; Antsy Pants’ ukelele and repetitious, childlike chanting of “I am a vampire” is just as annoying as Vampire Academy itself.
5) The Song: “One Way or Another” by Blondie
The Book: Legend by Marie Lu
I know it’s corny, but for better or worse this is the first song that came to mind after I finished Legend. The lyrics, “One way or another I’m gonna find ya, I’m gonna getcha getcha getcha getcha,” make me think of June’s single-minded determination to track down Day and avenge her brother.
6) The Song: “It’s Raining Men” by The Weather Girls
The Book: Eve & Adam by Michael Grant and Katherine Applegate
I couldn’t resist pairing this fun, upbeat song with the story about a girl who designs the ultimate man. As the song says, “God bless Mother Nature, she’s a single woman too / She took off to heaven and did what she had to do / She taught every angel to rearrange the sky / So that each and every woman could find her perfect guy.”
7) The Song: “Leave My Body” by Florence and the Machines
The Book: This is Not a Test by Courtney Summers
This intense, almost otherworldly song that speaks about losing your mind and your desire to live was the natural choice for This is Not a Test. Both the song and the book are simultaneously creepy and thrilling.
8) The Song: “Two is Better Than One” by Boys Like Girls
The Book: This Is What Happy Looks Like by Jennifer E. Smith
This Boys Likes Girls song captures the uncertainty and hopefulness of first love and made me think of Graham and Ellie’s hesitant happiness in Jennifer E. Smith’s sweet, lighthearted romance.
9) The Song: “Didn’t I” by Montgomery Gentry
The Book: Something Like Normal by Trish Doller
Similar to Something Like Normal, “Didn’t I” tells of the sacrifices made by our military men and women and what it’s like to come home from a tour of duty and discover that no one can understand what you’ve been through.
So, what do you think? Are there any other songs you feel would be a great match for the books I listed above? If so, please share in the comments section – I’d love to hear from you!