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: “A Place in this World” by Taylor Swift
The Book: Random by Alma Alexander
This song about a girl trying to find a place where she belongs made me think of Celia, whose diaries in Random tell of her struggles to fit in at a school where she’s bullied and discriminated against. In spite of the pain Celia experiences, she retains a quiet strength and hope. As the song says, “I’m alone, on my own, and that’s all I know / I’ll be strong, I’ll be wrong, oh but life goes on.”
2) The Song: “Flying High” by Jem
The Book: Of Beast and Beauty by Stacey Jay
This lovely, romantic song describes Gem and Isra’s conflicted feelings in Stacey Jay’s retelling of Beauty and the Beast. The two aren’t supposed to like one another, let alone fall in love, but they can’t deny their growing attraction. Here’s my favorite line from the song: “I know there’s no such thing / As painless love / Well it’ll catch us up / And we can never win / But oh / I feel so alive.”
3) The Song: “Walk” by Foo Fighters
The Book: First by Chanda Stafford
I think of “Walk” as Socrates’ song in First. This is partly because the lyrics speak of starting over and never wanting to die – after all, Socrates is immortal. A larger part of my association of this song with Socrates, though, is that it’s about turning points, new beginnings, and learning to change the way you walk and talk and approach life. It reminded me of how Socrates changes over the course of First and the strides he takes in becoming a different person from the beginning of the book to the end.
4) The Song: “Gift of a Friend” by Demi Lovato
The Book: Bronze by B. B. Shepherd
Bronze is all about friendship, specifically how it transforms one young girl’s life when she moves to a new town and develops relationships with the local kids and animals. As Demi Lovato explains in “Gift of a Friend,” “The world comes to life /And everything’s bright / From beginning to end / When you have a friend.”
5) The Song: “Crawling” by Linkin Park
The Book: Project CAIN by Geoffrey Girard
When Jeff Jacobson finds out he’s the clone of mass murderer Jeffrey Dahmer, he’s consumed by feelings of guilt and self-loathing, living in fear that some dark instinct or urge will one day rise up within him and he’ll go on a killing spree of his own. Linkin Park’s song “Crawling” conveys these fears and worries: “There’s something inside me that pulls beneath the surface / Consuming, confusing / This lack of self-control I fear is never ending.”
Are there any other songs you feel would be a great match for the books I listed above? If so, I’d love to hear from you – please share in the comments section below!