Wednesday, February 15, 2012

MASH Day- Musical Books


We've written about music in YA books before, and now it's time once again to draw your attention to these gorgeously musical mash-ups! I'll list some of my favorite books that feature music as an important player, almost a character. Follow the link above to see book playlists created by authors and fans.

I've talked about Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist before. I can't help it...I love this book, as well as almost everything David Levithan creates. Nick and Norah run into each other at a club one spring night in New York City, and it's like they are musical soul mates. (The only band they disagree on is The Beatles.) They spend the night getting to know each other while trying to track down a secret show by their favorite band, Where's Fluffy. Both Rachel Cohn and David Levithan have a knack for writing about music. I especially love Levithan's description of how the experience of music changed after 9-11 in Love is the Higher Law.

Speaking of musical David Levithan books, I have to give a shout-out to Will Grayson, will grayson, which Levithan co-wrote with John Green. In this book, Tiny Cooper (arguably one of the greatest characters in American fiction. Ever.) writes a musical about his own life, with the kind of warmth and flamboyance that only Tiny Cooper could achieve. The novel's penultimate scene takes place during Tiny's well deserved standing ovation.

In Debby Harry Sings in French, Johnny doesn't begin to feel complete until he starts listening to the new wave band Blondie, and dressing up like the lead singer, Debbie Harry.

K.L. Going's Fat Kid Rules the World shows how punk rock can change one kid's life for the better, while enabling the downfall of another's.

In Gayle Forman's tragic If I Stay, Mia, a classical musician, is in a car accident that kills her parents and leaves her comatose. From her coma, she must decide whether to return to her life and the challenges in store or move on, and music is one of her guides.

What would you do if your ex-boyfriend records a nasty break up song about you that becomes ridiculously popular? In Audrey Wait!, Audrey has to deal with her sudden, unwelcome fame as a derogatory song about her soars to the top of the Billboard charts.

In Five Flavors of Dumb, Piper is mostly deaf, so everyone thinks it's weird when she starts managing one of the bands at her Seattle high school. She surprises even herself when she brings the band closer to success and musicality than seemed possible.

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