Music


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Mathea Morais's Playlist for Her Novel "There You Are"

In the Book Notes series, authors create and discuss a music playlist that relates in some way to their recently published book. Previous contributors include Jesmyn Ward, Lauren Groff, Bret Easton Ellis, Celeste Ng, T.C. Boyle, Dana Spiotta, Amy Bloom, Aimee Bender, Heidi Julavits, Roxane Gay, and many others. Mathea Morais's coming-of-age debut novel There You Are impressively wields music as the heart of both its characters and environment. Kirkus wrote of the book: "...for readers who...
Tags: Asia, Music, Aretha Franklin, David, House, David Bowie, Smokey Robinson, Elvis Presley, Michael Brown, Francis, Prince, Michael Jackson, St Louis, Detroit, Nina Simone, Cypress Hill


Flash Dancers: Ekphrastic Singles - "Hey Nineteen" by Aimee Parkison

The Flash Dancers: Ekphrastic Singles series is curated by Meg Pokrass. Authors pair an original work of flash fiction with a song. Hey Nineteen by Aimee Parkison (inspired by the song “Hey Nineteen” by Steely Dan) Because he didn’t know my name and I wasn’t going to tell, he asked how old I was. I said, “Nineteen.” After that, he started calling me Nineteen, as if I were a number. “Hey, Nineteen,” he said. He laughed, so I guess he thought it funny. It got old real fast, the way ...
Tags: Music, David, Atomic Books Comics Preview, Oklahoma State University, Christopher Isherwood, Antiheroines, Parkison, Meg Pokrass Authors, Aimee Parkison, Steely Dan Because, Innocent Party


Crissy Van Meter's Playlist for Her Novel "Creatures"

In the Book Notes series, authors create and discuss a music playlist that relates in some way to their recently published book. Previous contributors include Jesmyn Ward, Lauren Groff, Bret Easton Ellis, Celeste Ng, T.C. Boyle, Dana Spiotta, Amy Bloom, Aimee Bender, Heidi Julavits, Roxane Gay, and many others. Crissy Van Meter's novel Creatures is a stunning debut, a coming-of-age tale with a strong sense of place. The New York Times wrote of the book: "Vivid and moving . . . The tempo o...
Tags: Music, California, David, New York Times, Snoop Dogg, Kirkus, Atomic Books Comics Preview, Johnny Cash, San Francisco Chronicle, Evie, Evangeline, Emmylou Harris, Liam, Chuck Berry, CCR, Antiheroines


William Lychack's Playlist for His Novel "Cargill Falls"

In the Book Notes series, authors create and discuss a music playlist that relates in some way to their recently published book. Previous contributors include Jesmyn Ward, Lauren Groff, Bret Easton Ellis, Celeste Ng, T.C. Boyle, Dana Spiotta, Amy Bloom, Aimee Bender, Heidi Julavits, Roxane Gay, and many others. William Lychack's novel Cargill Falls is a powerful and lyrical evocation of youth in the recent past. The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette wrote of the book: "'Cargill Falls' is a poignant...
Tags: Music, Wikipedia, Georgia, David, Devil, Brownie, Don, Atomic Books Comics Preview, Pittsburgh Post Gazette, Crawford, Dusty Springfield, The Pittsburgh Post Gazette, Merle Haggard, Shirelles, Antiheroines, Righteous Brothers


Wesley Browne's Playlist for His Novel "Hillbilly Hustle"

In the Book Notes series, authors create and discuss a music playlist that relates in some way to their recently published book. Previous contributors include Jesmyn Ward, Lauren Groff, Bret Easton Ellis, Celeste Ng, T.C. Boyle, Dana Spiotta, Amy Bloom, Aimee Bender, Heidi Julavits, Roxane Gay, and many others. Wesley Browne's novel Hillbilly Hustle is a fast-paced and thoroughly enjoyable debut. Kirkus wrote of the book: "A top-notch debut with a winning narrative voice and unexpectedly ...
Tags: Music, Kentucky, Tom Waits, David, Bob Dylan, Chelsea, Willie Nelson, Knox, Janis Joplin, Illinois, Commonwealth, Sturgill Simpson, Kirkus, Tom, Publishers Weekly, Atomic Books Comics Preview


Clare Beams' Playlist for Her Novel "The Illness Lesson"

In the Book Notes series, authors create and discuss a music playlist that relates in some way to their recently published book. Previous contributors include Jesmyn Ward, Lauren Groff, Bret Easton Ellis, Celeste Ng, T.C. Boyle, Dana Spiotta, Amy Bloom, Aimee Bender, Heidi Julavits, Roxane Gay, and many others. Clare Beams' debut The Illness Lesson is a brilliant, inventive, and evocative debut. The New York Times wrote of the book: "Astoundingly original, this impressive debut belongs on...
Tags: Music, Massachusetts, Andrew Bird, David, New York Times, Connecticut, Beethoven, Margaret Atwood, New England, Sylvia Plath, Samuel, Kirkus, Publishers Weekly, Atomic Books Comics Preview, San Francisco Chronicle, Caroline


Amina Cain's Playlist for Her Novel "Indelicacy"

In the Book Notes series, authors create and discuss a music playlist that relates in some way to their recently published book. Previous contributors include Jesmyn Ward, Lauren Groff, Bret Easton Ellis, Celeste Ng, T.C. Boyle, Dana Spiotta, Amy Bloom, Aimee Bender, Heidi Julavits, Roxane Gay, and many others. Amina Cain's novel Indelicacy is as inventive and assuredly written as any I have ever read. An exemplary contemporary novel from one of our most talented writers. Booklist wrote of...
Tags: Music, David, Harper, Billy, Townes Van Zandt, Coney Island, Kirkus, Atomic Books Comics Preview, Johann Sebastian Bach, Paris Review, Bach, Caroline, Los Angeles Review of Books, Booklist, Bonnie, Wainwright


Kathleen Donohoe's Playlist for Her Novel "Ghosts of the Missing"

In the Book Notes series, authors create and discuss a music playlist that relates in some way to their recently published book. Previous contributors include Jesmyn Ward, Lauren Groff, Bret Easton Ellis, Celeste Ng, T.C. Boyle, Dana Spiotta, Amy Bloom, Aimee Bender, Heidi Julavits, Roxane Gay, and many others. Kathleen Donohoe's Ghosts of the Missing is a smart and engaging literary thriller. Kirkus wrote of the book: "Donohoe is skilled at cultivating the pervasively disconcerting and m...
Tags: Music, New York, David, Ireland, Sinead O'connor, Carney, Kirkus, Publishers Weekly, Atomic Books Comics Preview, Evelyn, Rowan, Scully, Angela, Cyndi Lauper, Mulder, Hudson Valley


Andrew Krivak's Playlist for His Novel "The Bear"

In the Book Notes series, authors create and discuss a music playlist that relates in some way to their recently published book. Previous contributors include Jesmyn Ward, Lauren Groff, Bret Easton Ellis, Celeste Ng, T.C. Boyle, Dana Spiotta, Amy Bloom, Aimee Bender, Heidi Julavits, Roxane Gay, and many others. Andrew Krivak's novel a href="https://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/1942658702/ref=nosim/largeheartedb-20">The Bear is a brilliantly written post-apocalyptic fable of nature's stre...
Tags: Music, Boston, Wilco, America, David, House, New England, Cormac Mccarthy, Josh Ritter, Kirkus, Publishers Weekly, Atomic Books Comics Preview, Alejandro Escovedo, Booklist, Scranton, ASIN


Katharine Coldiron's Playlist for Her Novella "Ceremonials"

In the Book Notes series, authors create and discuss a music playlist that relates in some way to their recently published book. Previous contributors include Jesmyn Ward, Lauren Groff, Bret Easton Ellis, Celeste Ng, T.C. Boyle, Dana Spiotta, Amy Bloom, Aimee Bender, Heidi Julavits, Roxane Gay, and many others. Katharine Coldiron's Ceremonials is a novella inspired by the Florence + the Machine album of the same name, and manages to distill the spirit of its inspiration into a book both lyr...
Tags: Music, Berlin, David, Bing, Florence, Amelia, Kirkus, Atomic Books Comics Preview, Gershwin, Florence The Machine, Irving Berlin, Jennifer Connelly, Fred Astaire, Sarah Vaughan, Julie London, Antiheroines


Erin Pringle's Playlist for Her Novel "Hezada! I Miss You"

In the Book Notes series, authors create and discuss a music playlist that relates in some way to their recently published book. Previous contributors include Jesmyn Ward, Lauren Groff, Bret Easton Ellis, Celeste Ng, T.C. Boyle, Dana Spiotta, Amy Bloom, Aimee Bender, Heidi Julavits, Roxane Gay, and many others. Erin Pringle's novel Hezada! I Miss You is a moving and compelling examination of love and loss in small town America. In her own words, here is Erin Pringle's Book Notes music pla...
Tags: Music, England, New York, Lana Del Rey, Norah Jones, America, Neil Young, Sufjan Stevens, David, Billy Joel, Mcdonalds, Barbie, Frank Sinatra, Duran Duran, Kfc, Alice


Flash Dancers: Ekphrastic Singles - "Mary’s Dress Waves" by Kathryn Kulpa

The Flash Dancers: Ekphrastic Singles series is curated by Meg Pokrass. Authors pair an original work of flash fiction with a song. Mary’s Dress Waves by Kathryn Kulpa (after "Thunder Road") I used to dream of being kidnapped. I would be drooping in my molded plastic desk/chair, drawing lightning bolts and three-dimensional boxes in my notebook. The door of Mrs. Casey’s sixth-grade classroom would slam open and he would scan the room for a hostage and I, only I, would meet his gaze: def...
Tags: Music, David, Atomic Books Comics Preview, Mary, Antiheroines, Ekphrastic Singles Mary 's Dress Waves, Kathryn Kulpa, Meg Pokrass Authors, Dress Waves, Michael Martone


Kate Hodges' Playlist for Her Book "Warriors, Witches, Women"

In the Book Notes series, authors create and discuss a music playlist that relates in some way to their recently published book. Previous contributors include Jesmyn Ward, Lauren Groff, Bret Easton Ellis, Celeste Ng, T.C. Boyle, Dana Spiotta, Amy Bloom, Aimee Bender, Heidi Julavits, Roxane Gay, and many others. Kate Hodges' book Warriors, Witches, Women is filled with captivating illustrated profiles of mythology's most interesting women. In her own words, here is Kate Hodges' Book Notes ...
Tags: Music, London, David, Bob Dylan, Bob, Stevie Nicks, Jack, Venus, Joan Baez, Hastings, Atomic Books Comics Preview, Dylan, Rhiannon, Siouxsie Sioux, Antiheroines, Death Valley Girls


Jennifer Spiegel's Playlist for Her Memoir "Cancer, I'll Give You One Year"

In the Book Notes series, authors create and discuss a music playlist that relates in some way to their recently published book. Previous contributors include Jesmyn Ward, Lauren Groff, Bret Easton Ellis, Celeste Ng, T.C. Boyle, Dana Spiotta, Amy Bloom, Aimee Bender, Heidi Julavits, Roxane Gay, and many others. Jennifer Spiegel's Cancer, I'll Give You One Year is a boldly told memoir of illness and identity. Gina Frangello wrote of the book: "Jennifer Spiegel is—thank God—an anti-guru. Th...
Tags: Music, Jerusalem, David, Brooklyn, Bob Dylan, Florence, Oj Simpson, Epcot, Bush, Atomic Books Comics Preview, Johnny Cash, Julie Miller, SPIEGEL, Antiheroines, Gina Frangello, Lauren Groff Bret Easton Ellis Celeste Ng


Brad Schreiber's Playlist for His Book "Music is Power: Popular Songs, Social Justice, and the Will to Change"

In the Book Notes series, authors create and discuss a music playlist that relates in some way to their recently published book. Previous contributors include Jesmyn Ward, Lauren Groff, Bret Easton Ellis, Celeste Ng, T.C. Boyle, Dana Spiotta, Amy Bloom, Aimee Bender, Heidi Julavits, Roxane Gay, and many others. Brad Schreiber's Music is Power engagingly explores the intersection of music and political action over the past 100 years Douglas Rushkoff wrote of the book: "An inspiring tour th...
Tags: Music, New York, London, Law, Washington, La, Iraq, US, Pink Floyd, David, South Africa, Bob Dylan, Aclu, Salt Lake City, Bronx, Sun City


Sharma Shields' Playlist for Her Novel "The Cassandra"

In the Book Notes series, authors create and discuss a music playlist that relates in some way to their recently published book. Previous contributors include Jesmyn Ward, Lauren Groff, Bret Easton Ellis, Celeste Ng, T.C. Boyle, Dana Spiotta, Amy Bloom, Aimee Bender, Heidi Julavits, Roxane Gay, and many others. Sharma Shields' novel The Cassandra is powerful, relevant, and masterfully told. Booklist wrote of the book: "[A] galvanizing variation on the ancient Greek tale of a seer doomed a...
Tags: Music, Washington, David, New York Times, Epa, Solange, North America, Pacific Northwest, Columbia, Northwest, James Murphy, Nagasaki, Hiroshima, Robyn, Delphi, Kirkus


Luke Geddes' Playlist for His Debut Novel "Heart of Junk"

In the Book Notes series, authors create and discuss a music playlist that relates in some way to their recently published book. Previous contributors include Jesmyn Ward, Lauren Groff, Bret Easton Ellis, Celeste Ng, T.C. Boyle, Dana Spiotta, Amy Bloom, Aimee Bender, Heidi Julavits, Roxane Gay, and many others. Luke Geddes' debut novel Heart of Junk is quirky, moving, and hilarious. Publishers Weekly wrote f the book: "[A] rambunctious, oddly touching debut…[Geddes] offers even his most m...
Tags: Music, Ebay, Electric Ladyland, David, Burma, Memphis, Ray Davies, Wilson, Kirkus, Don, Publishers Weekly, Atomic Books Comics Preview, Lee, Wichita, Appleton Wisconsin, Seymour


Peter Stamm's Playlist for His Novel "The Sweet Indifference of the World"

In the Book Notes series, authors create and discuss a music playlist that relates in some way to their recently published book. Previous contributors include Jesmyn Ward, Lauren Groff, Bret Easton Ellis, Celeste Ng, T.C. Boyle, Dana Spiotta, Amy Bloom, Aimee Bender, Heidi Julavits, Roxane Gay, and many others. Peter Stamm's latest novel The Sweet Indifference of the World is a riveting and surprising exploration of memory and identity. The Minneapolis Star Tribune wrote of the book: "An ...
Tags: Music, Wikipedia, World, David, Switzerland, Stockholm, Brittany, Lausanne, John Cage, Rage Against The Machine, Publishers Weekly, Atomic Books Comics Preview, Minneapolis Star Tribune, Agnes, Lena, Gavin Bryars


Lance Olsen's Playlist for His Novel "My Red Heaven"

In the Book Notes series, authors create and discuss a music playlist that relates in some way to their recently published book. Previous contributors include Jesmyn Ward, Lauren Groff, Bret Easton Ellis, Celeste Ng, T.C. Boyle, Dana Spiotta, Amy Bloom, Aimee Bender, Heidi Julavits, Roxane Gay, and many others. Lance Olsen's novel My Red Heaven is bold and inventive in its form without sacrificing readability. Another must-read book from a writer never afraid to take chances. Publishers We...
Tags: Music, Florida, Wikipedia, Germany, Nazis, Berlin, David, David Bowie, Slavoj Zizek, Hitler, Lou Reed, Thomas Pynchon, Nick Cave, Weimar, Trump, Bowie


Jessica Andrews' Playlist for Her Debut Novel "Saltwater"

In the Book Notes series, authors create and discuss a music playlist that relates in some way to their recently published book. Previous contributors include Jesmyn Ward, Lauren Groff, Bret Easton Ellis, Celeste Ng, T.C. Boyle, Dana Spiotta, Amy Bloom, Aimee Bender, Heidi Julavits, Roxane Gay, and many others. Jessica Andrews’ novel Saltwater is an audacious debut, an inventively told and intimate coming-of-age story. The Independent wrote of the book: "Jessica Andrews’ debut novel shimm...
Tags: Music, England, London, Aberdeen, David, Ireland, Sunderland, David Bowie, Guardian, Oasis, Leonard Cohen, Lucy, Nick Cave, Independent, Nme, Marc Bolan


Rye Curtis's Playlist for His Debut Novel "Kingdomtide"

In the Book Notes series, authors create and discuss a music playlist that relates in some way to their recently published book. Previous contributors include Jesmyn Ward, Lauren Groff, Bret Easton Ellis, Celeste Ng, T.C. Boyle, Dana Spiotta, Amy Bloom, Aimee Bender, Heidi Julavits, Hari Kunzru, and many others. Rye Curtis's novel Kingdomtide is a surprising, powerful, and above all, entertaining, debut. Booklist wrote of the book: "Gloriously unexpected...A deep and surprising debut...Cl...
Tags: Music, Texas, Glen Campbell, David, Bobby Brown, Bobby, Kirkus, Publishers Weekly, Atomic Books Comics Preview, Debbie, Cyndi Lauper, Booklist, Kyrie, Corona, Galveston, Enya


Jason Brown' Playlist for His Story Collection "A Faithful but Melancholy Account of Several Barbarities Lately Committed"

In the Book Notes seriaes, authors create and discuss a music playlist that relates in some way to their recently published book. Previous contributors include Jesmyn Ward, Lauren Groff, Bret Easton Ellis, Celeste Ng, T.C. Boyle, Dana Spiotta, Amy Bloom, Aimee Bender, Heidi Julavits, Hari Kunzru, and many others. Individually, the linked stories in Jason Brown's collection A Faithful but Melancholy Account of Several Barbarities Lately Committed are compellingly told, but collectively they ...
Tags: Music, Scotland, Wikipedia, America, David, Maine, John Coltrane, John, Halifax, Highlands, Townes Van Zandt, Atomic Books Comics Preview, PAUL, Cape Breton, Barrett, Natalie


Sadie Hoagland's Playlist for Her Short Story Collection "American Grief in Four Stages"

In the Book Notes seriaes, authors create and discuss a music playlist that relates in some way to their recently published book. Previous contributors include Jesmyn Ward, Lauren Groff, Bret Easton Ellis, Celeste Ng, T.C. Boyle, Dana Spiotta, Amy Bloom, Aimee Bender, Heidi Julavits, Hari Kunzru, and many others. Sadie Hoagland's brilliant collection American Grief in Four Stages is filled with stories of loss and its subsequent trauma. Kirkus wrote of the book: "A captivating debut colle...
Tags: Music, David, Salem, Lafayette, Jenny Lewis, Simon, Ihop, Kirkus, Atomic Books Comics Preview, University of Utah, Harvey, Garfunkel, Digest, Aztecs, Johnston, University of Louisiana


Nancy Davis Kho's Playlist for Her Book "The Thank-You Project"

In the Book Notes series, authors create and discuss a music playlist that relates in some way to their recently published book. Previous contributors include Jesmyn Ward, Lauren Groff, Bret Easton Ellis, Celeste Ng, T.C. Boyle, Dana Spiotta, Amy Bloom, Aimee Bender, Heidi Julavits, Hari Kunzru, and many others. I have long admired Nancy Davis Kho's Midlife Mixtape blog, and her book The Thank-You Project impressed me as well. Deftly examining the power of expressing gratitude in writing, t...
Tags: Music, Time, Neil Young, David, Ariana Grande, James Taylor, Shakira, Prince, North Carolina, Van Halen, Dawn, Kirkus, Lizzo, Publishers Weekly, Atomic Books Comics Preview, Matt


Favorite Short Story Collections of 2019

2019 was another great year for short fiction collections. These are the short fiction collections I have recommended most to blog readers, friends, and family throughout the year. What was your favorite short story collection of 2019? Black Light by Kimberly King Parsons Heartbreaking and lyrical, Kimberly King Parson's short fiction collection Black Light is one of the most striking books of the year. Driving in Cars with Homeless Men by Kate Wisel Winner of the Drue Heinz Literatu...
Tags: Music, David, Houston, Antiheroines, Samanta Schweblin Samanta Schweblin, Mouthful of Birds, Kate Wisel, Kimberly King Parsons Heartbreaking, Kimberly King Parson, Kate Wisel Winner of the Drue Heinz, Peg Alford Pursell Peg Alford Pursell, Mimi Lok Mimi Lok, Bryan Washington Bryan Washington


Chrissy Kolaya's Playlist for Her Poetry Collection "Other Possible Lives"

In the Book Notes series, authors create and discuss a music playlist that relates in some way to their recently published book. Previous contributors include Jesmyn Ward, Lauren Groff, Bret Easton Ellis, Celeste Ng, T.C. Boyle, Dana Spiotta, Amy Bloom, Aimee Bender, Heidi Julavits, Hari Kunzru, and many others. Chrissy Kolaya’s poetry collection is a brilliant and haunting exploration of the choices people make and their consequences. Vandana Khanna wrote of the book: "Grappling with the ...
Tags: Music, Minnesota, Beck, Wilco, David, Mark Ronson, Bruno Mars, Holland, Catholic, Britney Spears, World Trade Center, Ac Dc, Belle, Rufus Wainwright, Chinatown, Liz Phair


Leah Umansky's Favorite Poetry Collections of 2019

Here are some of my favorite books of poetry I read in 2019: The Twenty-Ninth Year by Hala Alyan Hala Alyan’s first book of poems is both lyrical and honest, two of my favorite things about a collection of poetry. I love the way her poems echo what it means to be a woman, to own your body, to take your body out into the world and examine it against both your personal geography and your familial geography. Overall, I found it to be a meditation on the self, on desire and on womanhood.I’m not...
Tags: Music, NYC, David, MFA, Dorianne Laux, Sarah Lawrence College, Espada, Antiheroines, Maria Mazziotti Gillan, Ocean Vuong, Leah Umansky, Hala Alyan Hala Alyan, Ilya Kaminsky, Camonghne Felix, Camonghne, Deaf Republic


Bryan Furuness's Playlist for His Novel "Do Not Go on"

In the Book Notes series, authors create and discuss a music playlist that relates in some way to their recently published book. Previous contributors include Jesmyn Ward, Lauren Groff, Bret Easton Ellis, Celeste Ng, T.C. Boyle, Dana Spiotta, Amy Bloom, Aimee Bender, Heidi Julavits, Hari Kunzru, and many others. Bryan Furuness's novel Do Not Go on is a literary thriller both engaging and surprising. Philip Graham wrote of the book: "Do Not Go on, the new novel by Bryan Furuness, goes deep...
Tags: Music, Indiana, David, Portland, Kate, Portlandia, Macklemore, Ana, Michelle, Atomic Books Comics Preview, Logan, Philip Graham, Aesop Rock, Moreau, Deli, Gen X


Kate Wisel's Playlist for Her Short Story Collection "Driving in Cars with Homeless Men"

In the Book Notes series, authors create and discuss a music playlist that relates in some way to their recently published book. Previous contributors include Jesmyn Ward, Lauren Groff, Bret Easton Ellis, Celeste Ng, T.C. Boyle, Dana Spiotta, Amy Bloom, Aimee Bender, Heidi Julavits, Hari Kunzru, and many others. Winner of the Drue Heinz Literature Prize, Kate Wisel's linked story collection Driving in Cars with Homeless Men is filled with haunting and poignant portrayals of women and violen...
Tags: Music, Lana Del Rey, Boston, Chicago, David, Bob Dylan, Moscow, Amy Winehouse, Janis Joplin, Mariah, Conor Oberst, Serena, Ray Charles, Boston Globe, Atomic Books Comics Preview, Sara


Mary Ann Cain's Playlist for Her Book "South Side Venus: The Legacy of Margaret Burroughs"

In the Book Notes series, authors create and discuss a music playlist that relates in some way to their recently published book. Previous contributors include Jesmyn Ward, Lauren Groff, Bret Easton Ellis, Celeste Ng, T.C. Boyle, Dana Spiotta, Amy Bloom, Aimee Bender, Heidi Julavits, Hari Kunzru, and many others. Mary Ann Cain's South Side Venus is a rich and profound biography of Chicago curator, artist, and activist Margaret Burroughs. Publishers Weekly wrote of the book: "Cain (Down fro...
Tags: Music, Hollywood, Washington, Mexico, New York City, Africa, Spain, Chicago, David, United States, New Jersey, Mexico City, New Orleans, Catholic, Paul Robeson, Louisiana



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