Friday, January 3, 2014

Review: This Song Will Save Your Life by Leila Sales


This Song Will Save Your Life by Leila Sales

Rating: 4.5/5 Stars

Genres: Contemporary

Release Date: September 17th, 2013 

Source: Library



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.

My Review:
It's not often that a book can just get it right. Truly right. But This Song Will Save Your Life hit everything perfectly. The perfect read in so many ways, I'm glad that I picked this one up despite some of its flaws. It’s one that so, so many people are going to be able to relate to.

The thing I adored most about about this book has to be its gorgeous voice. Sales breathes life into Elsie, so much so that I feel like she could go to my school, be a real person. There's just so much emotion present in Elsie's narration, emotions that I've never seen depicted in YA books before, at least not as well as it's done here. It captures the teen voice so well, and that's what I truly appreciated: that this is book for teens. All of us, the teens living in today's society, go through stuff like Elsie did. Sales never shies away from the hard emotions, instead, embracing them, making a character teens across the globe will be able to relate to, no matter their situation.

Moreover, I adored the secondary characters present throughout the novel. Even the small characters who supposed to be playing a minimal role had a lot of personality, and I could see them as real people in Elsie’s world. There was huge amount of depth within them that was just flat-out unexpected, but totally welcomed, especially with Elsie’s parents. Most of the time in YA it’s more of a Missing Parents Syndrome thing, even in contemp novels, but Elsie’s parents were an integral part of the story almost all the time. I enjoyed seeing her rocky relationship with them, because that’s how it is with teens so much of the time.

However, I felt as if the ending was just too rushed. This book wasn’t even long in the first place, although it certainly wasn’t a fast paced novel. So I couldn’t really understand why the ending was rushed in the first place. Mistakes are made and made-up for rather quickly, and things just came together a tad too easily a tad too quickly. I’m all for building better relationships and learning from your mistakes, but that takes a while, so I couldn’t fully appreciate the ending because things happened far too quickly and the development that I was hoping for just wasn’t there.

Overall, this book managed to hit so many right notes. I’ve finally found the perfect contemp that really speaks to me as a reader, because at least for me, it’s hard to find a novel that really gets that teen voice. This Song Will Save Your Life did that and so much more, breathing life into all the characters and making me think I was right there. Even with a rushed ending, I can’t recommend this one enough, contemp fan or not. If you’re a teen, then this is basically a must-read for you. Even if you’re not, this one will inspire all the emotions and most definitely have you thinking about your life in a new light.


  1. Wonderful review! Love it when a book that really speaks to you, so thank you for sharing! And the parents are not only present, but integral to the story? That's practically unheard of, so now I'm even more intrigued!

  2. Woot! I'm so glad you enjoyed this one, Aneeqah. I feel like it has a universal appeal because of the subject matter it touches upon and it was definitely a very personal read for me. Lovely review, my friend - I really am thrilled you loved it as much as you did! :)

  3. That's a bummer that the ending felt rushed; it's always weird when that happens when the rest of the book was a nice pace. Regardless I'm happy to hear you really liked this one!! I've heard some really good things.


  4. Gaaah, Aneeqah, I had this book from the library just last week but I had to return it :( I'm so happy to see that you loved this one! This one was so popular on nearly everybody's 2013 favorites. Your review sure proves why! With a relatable main character, awesome side characters, I can totally see why this book is so well-loved! And LOL at the Missing Parents Syndrome, I'm glad that wasn't the case here! Lovely review, Aneeqah, I'll need to pick this one up soon!

  5. When I read this one in the summer, I didn't relate to it so completely that everyone else did, but I want to reread it because I feel like I would wholeheartedly agree with what you said about Elise's voice. I definitely know what it means when you can't make friends easily, and what it's like to feel lonely, so I may have to read this one again just to get a better feel of it. But I completely agree, Elise's voice is so easy to relate to and it speaks to so many different teens. Fantastic review, Aneeqah! <33

  6. I really enjoyed this book! I personally kind of liked how the ending was done and left things open for you think about. I completely agree with you about the author doing at an amazing job at depicting the emotions present in this novel. It was such a good read. Great review :)

  7. I recently read and reviewed This Song Will Save Your Life, and I LOVED IT. Elise is probably one the most memorable book charterers ever, Ii do agree with you about the ending feeling quite rushed. But nevertheless I enjoyed it as much as you did! Great review Aneeqah <3

  8. Most people seem to be loving this book which makes me tempted to pick it up but I want to be in the right mood before I do. YA contemporaries and I share a very rocky relationship. It's mostly a hit or miss situation and some books strike the right chord and some don't (SEE WHAT I DID THERE?). I am so glad you enjoyed this Aneeqah, it makes me really tempted to pick this up.

    Lovely Review :)

  9. Great review! I've been contemplating on whether or not to read this book because I'm not that big of a fan of contemporaries, but I might possibly pick this one up sometime. Thanks!

    Millie @ Millie D's Words

  10. I saw this book on a lot of top books for 2013 lists. I am glad you enjoyed it this much. I haven't read it but your review makes me want to move it up my TBR.

  11. Great review :) so many ppl loved this I really need to read it!

  12. I cannot wait to read this book! Awesome review
    New follower :)
    ­Missie @ A Flurry of Ponderings


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