Monday, December 16, 2013

Book Review: This Song Will Save Your Life by Leila Sales

This Song Will Save Your Life
Author:  Leila Sales
Publisher: Farrar, Straus, & Giroux, 288 pages
Publication Date:  September 17, 2013

From Goodreads:
Making friends has never been Elise Dembowski’s strong suit. All throughout her life, she’s been the butt of every joke and the outsider in every conversation. When a final attempt at popularity fails, Elise nearly gives up. Then she stumbles upon a warehouse party where she meets Vicky, a girl in a band who accepts her; Char, a cute, yet mysterious disc jockey; Pippa, a carefree spirit from England; and most importantly, a love for DJing.

Told in a refreshingly genuine and laugh-out-loud funny voice, THIS SONG WILL SAVE YOUR LIFE is an exuberant novel about identity, friendship, and the power of music to bring people together.


Review:
An honest, emotional, funny yet heartbreaking story about Elise, a precocious teenager who has always excelled at everything she's ever set her mind to.  As she admits, she has talent.  And issues.  The one talent she lacks is making friends.  Which was just so sad.  All she wanted was a friend and she couldn't understand why no one liked her and in fact, why she had so many enemies.  

Elise's voice is so fresh and genuine.  There were definitely laugh out loud moments and also moments everyone can identify with.  

"I've gone to school with the same kids since kindergarten.  And they knew what I was long before I did.  I was uncool by the fourth grade.  How is it even possible to be an uncool fourth grader?  Didn't we all just string together friendship bracelets and daydream about horses and pretend to solve mysteries back then?"

“Sometimes people think they know you. They know a few facts about you, and they piece you together in a way that makes sense to them. And if you don't know yourself very well, you might even believe that they are right. But the truth is, that isn't you. That isn't you at all.” 

Then things turn around when Elise discovers Start, an underground dance club.  She finds friends and a love for DJing.  I loved the cast of characters that Leila Sales created.  Vicky, the talented singer who appreciates Elise for who she is.  Mel, the bouncer, who looks after Elise.  Char, the mysterious DJ who shares his love of music with Elise and teaches her how to DJ.  I appreciated the fact that he was such a realistically flawed character who ended up being exactly what Elise needed.  And I loved that Elise's parents are such a big part of the story (in a good way).  

A powerful story about growing up, acceptance, friendship, and music, I definitely recommend it.


Posted by:  Pam

13 comments:

  1. So glad you read/reviewed this book. I also loved that Elise's parents played a big role in the story...doesn't happen too often in a YA book that BOTH parents are in the picture and are actually involved. great review!

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    1. Her parents were great (except for that step-father and that one scene), which is unusual. Glad you enjoyed it too! ~Pam

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  2. Yay! Glad you liked it. I've heard GREAT things about this one. I will need to move it up on the TBR since basically anything you like I'll probably like. :)

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    1. We do seem to have very similar tastes! ~Pam

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  3. I recently read and loved this too! I really came to love and care for Elise, she was such a great character. I also loved Char, and how much of a realistic character he was. Great review :)

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    1. Elise is a great character and I loved Char too. It definitely wasn't the typical YA love story, which I appreciated. ~Pam

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  4. That is one awesome quote, great choice for the review. I haven't read this one but wow, the characters and emotion in it sound great. Haven't seen a negative review for this one yet.

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    1. That's one of the reasons I read it, all of the positive reviews. And Elise's voice is one of the things I really liked about the book. ~Pam

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  5. This is one of those books that I keep seeing around the place and as a result I really want to read it. I enjoyed your review - It sounds like a beautiful read.

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    1. Same here...I kept seeing it everywhere and I figured I needed to read it. Glad I did! ~Pam

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  6. It definitely felt real, you know? I'm glad you liked it. The second quote was one of my favorites. :)

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    1. There were so many great quotes it was hard just to pick a couple of them. ~Pam

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  7. Great review! I loved this one so much. I especially loved Elise's voice.

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