I Interviewed Leila Sales! OH AND THERE IS A GIVEAWAY I WISH I COULD WIN!

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HI GUYS. I’m waaaaay more excited than I normally am on a Wednesday. Why you ask (even if you didn’t…I’M TELLING YOUUU)? Because Leila Sales is on the blog today answering some of my questions and I couldn’t be more delighted. I ADORE Leila — both as a person and a writer and I sang HIGH HIGH praises for her book This Song Will Save Your Life back when I read it. A peek at what I said about it from my review: Its spirit pulses from the pages, right through to your veins and reverberates in your soul — a feeling reminiscent of any great concert or night out dancing where your ears are still buzzing and the music still pounds within you.” Read my full review!

I’d invite Leila on the blog any day ending with a Y just because but she’s here today to celebrate This Song Will Save Your Life coming out in paperback YESTERDAY! I’ve been DYING for it to come out ever since I had the honor of revealing the paperback redesign for it.

This Song Will Save Your Life Leila Sales paperback

So, let’s have a chat with Leila and then you can check out the AWESOME giveaway (no seriously, I’m dying for her new book and one of you lucky little book nerds is going to win it).

 

1. If books used pick-up lines when readers stood by the shelves trying to choose which book to pick up, what would This Song Will Save Your Life’s pick-up line be?

“Hey, what are you doing tonight? There’s a club if you’d like to go. You could meet somebody who really loves you.”

2. Since music is such a HUGE part of This Song Will Save Your Life obviously (and a huge passion of mine), I’m wondering what are 5 songs that have topped your playlists lately!
LOVE this question. When I wrote THIS SONG WILL SAVE YOUR LIFE I wanted to include only those songs that had already stood the test of time, so I don’t get a lot of opportunities to talk about newer songs that I’m digging right at this very moment.

Here are some of them:
“I Wanna Get Better,” by Bleachers
“Shut Up and Dance,” by Walk the Moon
“Sex,” by 1975
“My Friend Has a Swimming Pool,” by Mausi
“Palisades Park,” by the Counting Crows

 

Jamie note: AH Leila…I love Bleachers as well and same with Walk the Moon whom the husband and I just got to see in concert and they were so fun!

 

3. One of the things that Elise struggles with is making friends until she meets Vicky, Char and Pippa. Two part question, what other YA character do you think Elise would be good friends with? And what do you think is the difference between making friends as a teenager vs. making friends as an adult? (if there is a difference to you)
I could see Elise hanging out with Audrey from Robin Benway’s AUDREY, WAIT! They could go to shows together and have a blast. (Jamie note: LOVE THIS CHOICE. )

Difference between making friends as a teen versus as an adult: So, first of all, adults aren’t out to make you look and feel stupid all the time. Adults who make snide remarks about what you’re wearing, or about how excited you get about the “wrong” things, are universally understood to be huge jerks and wildly immature. Unfortunately, those behaviors are commonplace in high school. Because in high school there is ONE hierarchy of “cool” versus “not cool,” whereas in adulthood there’s no one set of rules that we are all “supposed” to be trying to follow.

Also: being a kid or teen is bizarre because you are divided up by age. You are for some reason expected to have things in common with some randomer just because you are fourteen and she is also fourteen. In adulthood, you can choose a career doing something that you care about, and through that career you get to meet other people who care about that specific thing. You get to choose what city to live in, and meet other people who chose to live in that same city. And even if those people are a decade younger or older than you, you still can be friends with them, and they will have actual things in common with you.

4. One thing that I loved about TSWSYL is how Elise learns that you don’t necessarily have to CHANGE to find yourself but you just have to see those perceived weaknesses/quirks as your strength and learn to be comfortable in your skin and be who you REALLY are — not who other people think you are or even who they’ve made you think you are.  If you could go back and give teenage Leila advice about this topic, what would it be?
Pretty much just that: know who you are, don’t listen to the people who tell you that what you are is “wrong.” And don’t be ashamed of being yourself, because the things that make you special (or, in high school, “weird”) are the things that make you MATTER—a lot more than whether some popular girl tells you that you matter. This is easier said than done, but it’s all true.

5. I remember being a liiiiiittle nervous about the teenage DJ aspect of this novel before I read it because it totally COULD have turned out corny but instead you made it so believable and fitting. What kind of research did you do to make it feel authentic and fit with the story?
I went out dancing a lot! I’ve always done that, but while I was writing this book I would dance and try to describe what I was seeing and experiencing (in my head, of course). Over the years I’ve also been friends with a number of DJs (and I’ve dated at least three of them), so I’ve learned a fair bit about what’s involved.

Now let’s go for some rapid fire questions:

Song that you always want to dance to: “Beat Control,” by Tilly and the Wall.

Book that saved your life: LIBBY ON WEDNESDAY, by Zilpha Keatley Snyder

Song that you STILL know every word to from your teen years: “One Week,” by the Barenaked Ladies. (This is my party trick. I’ll pull it out if you give even the slightest indication that you want to hear it. Or even, frankly, if you give no indication.)

Song that you’d be most likely to pick for karaoke: Well, “One Week.” Or “I Liked You So Much Better When You’re Naked,” by Ida Maria. Or “None of Your Business,” by Salt ‘n’ Pepa. Basically, if we go to do karaoke, we are going to be there for a while.

Song that you associate with high school: Ohh there are a lot. Let’s say… anything off the Lifehouse album “No Name Face,” and “The Middle” by Jimmy Eat World.

Book that you’ve loved recently: FAMOUS IN LOVE, by Rebecca Serle! Also everything that I’ve edited, naturally. (If you’re interested, I keep a Pinterest board of all of them: https://www.pinterest.com/prettytothink/books-i-edited/ Okay, end self-promotion.)

Current favorite album: A new album just came out from the Go! Team, so I’m really enjoying that, but it’s too early to call it my FAVORITE. I’d need to listen to it about a million times more. So let’s stick with “Strangers,” by RAC. They just write such good pop songs, it’s unbelievable.

 

Thanks for answering all my questions, Leila!! I feel like we are music soulmates (Tilly and the Wall <33 I feel like nobody I talk to knows them) and also I think we would have a damn good time doing karaoke together!

 

GIVEAWAYS

That’s right. TWO giveaways. Two winners. (US/Canada mailing addresses only).

GIVEAWAY #1: Up for grabs is an ARC of Leila’s upcoming release — Tonight The Streets Are Ours — which is one of my most anticipated books for this year! It sounds SO EXCELLENT. You can read more about it here.

Tonight The STreets are OUrs book

a Rafflecopter giveaway
 

 

 

Giveaway #2: A This Song Will Save Your Life mix cd curated by the participants on the blog tour — fun surprise and a chance to discover new music perhaps?

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Want More?

Full Blog Tour Schedule:

http://www.paperiot.com/                                                        April 2, 2015

http://theirishbanana.blogspot.com/                                     April 3, 2015

http://www.rainydayramblings.com                                       April 4, 2015

http://lilisreflections.blogspot.com/                                       April 5, 2015

http://www.thecompulsivereader.com/                              April 6, 2015

http://www.teenlibrariantoolbox.com/                                April 7, 2015

http://www.thebookcellarx.com/                                           April 8, 2015

http://www.greatimaginations.com/                                     April 9, 2015

http://thebevybibliotheque.net/                                             April 10, 2015

http://jenuinecupcakes.blogspot.com/                                 April 11, 2015

http://www.tickettoanywhere.net/                                       April 12, 2015

http://www.bookaddictsguide.com                                        April 13, 2015

http://macteenbooks.com                                                          April 14, 2015

http://www.perpetualpageturner.com                                 April 15, 2015

Cover Reveal: This Song Will Save Your Life PAPERBACK edition!!

If you followed my blog last year or saw my end of year favorites list, you will know that This Song Will Save Your Life by Leila Sales was one of my FAVORITE books of last year and definitely one of my all time favorite contemporary YA books ever.

IT IS SO GOOD YOU GUYS.

What It Is About:

“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.”

Some things I said about it in my review:

“Its spirit pulses from the pages, goes right through to your veins and reverberates in your soul — a feeling reminiscent of any great concert or night out dancing where your ears are still buzzing and the music still pounds within you as you drift off to sleep.”

“Heartbreaking at times, honest and inspiring you to realize that you don’t necessarily have to CHANGE to find yourself but you just have to see those perceived weaknesses or quirks as your strength and learn to be comfortable in your skin.”

“I’m not going to lie. Leila Sales had her work cut out for her to convince me that “teenage DJ” wasn’t going to be super corny. I will tell you that she successfully proved me wrong and I felt like I was walking into the club with Elise for the first time and feeling so excited every step of the way. I could feel the energy and I loved how the setting was written perfectly.”

 

So when Leila Sales, author of this amazing book and a seriously awesome person, asked me if I wanted to reveal the cover for the paperback I was like YES HELL YES THIS IS NOT EVEN A QUESTION. If you are a regular around these parts you know I don’t often do cover reveals so you KNOW how I excited I must be about this book!!

 

So without further ado, the cover for the paperback edition of This Song Will Save Your Life by Leila Sales:

 

This Song Will Save Your Life Leila Sales paperback

The paperback will be out April 28 and it will include an exclusive Q&A between Leila and her editor and very possibly a sneak peek teaser chapter from her next novel, TONIGHT THE STREETS ARE OURS, which I CANNOT WAIT FOR.

Read my FULL REVIEW of This Song Will Save Your Life // Add It To Your TBR List // Buy it!

I love this cover and I’m so, so happy a book I love got ANOTHER awesome cover! What do you think of the new cover? Have you read this book?? IF YOU HAVE NOT WHAT ARE YOU DOING WITH YOUR LIFE!

 

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

This Song Will Save Your Life by Leila Sales | Book ReviewThis Song Will Save Your Life by Leila Sales
Published by Farrer Straus and Giroux on September 17, 2013
Genres: Contemporary YA
Also by this author: Tonight The Streets Are Ours
Pages: 288
Format: ARC
Source: For Review
Amazon/Twitter
Goodreads

I received this book for review consideration from the publisher. This in no way swayed my opinion of the book. Pinky swear!

four-half-stars

 

 


Elise has always been on the outside and gotten picked on and endures school with no friends. She makes one last attempt to create a new Elise and try to fit in but it fails in the worst way and she thinks she just can’t bear it anymore. After she hits an ultimate low, she wanders off to walk one night and ends up in front of a warehouse where a secret party is happening and she meets people who welcome her in and accept her rather than looking at her the way her classmates do. Once inside she falls in love with the rush of the music and finds herself enthralled with DJing. As she falls more in love with DJing and feels like somebody, things at school seems to get even worse as her past sticks with her.

This Song Will Save Your Life was actually a bit of a surprise for me. It sounded like a fun contemporary novel that I would LIKE but I didn’t expect it to really make the kind of impression that it did and hit me square in the heart. I’m DEFINITELY going to be checking out Leila Sales others books if this is what I have to look forward to because she writes a damn good story with characters that feel familiar yet feel so unique. Its spirit pulses from the pages, right through to your veins and reverberates in your soul — a feeling reminiscent of any great concert or night out dancing where your ears are still buzzing and the music still pounds within you.

The official synopsis does not even prepare you for how heartbreaking Elise’s story is in terms of how she gets made fun of and bullied. She was genuinely different and I felt so bad for her for the shame she felt in that. I remember that feeling of needing to blend in during high school and it makes me ragey now to think about how much of my self I hid. It was heartbreaking to see how she was treated and to know just how lonely she was. I don’t want to say too much about the specifics but your heart will BREAK for Elise (and you’ll want to hulksmash some people)  and what she has to endure but you will root for her as she begins to be okay with the things that make her different and find people who help her embrace who she is.

I’m not going to lie. Leila Sales had her work cut out for her to convince me that “teenage DJ” wasn’t going to be super corny. I will tell you that she successfully proved me wrong and I felt like I was walking into the club with Elise for the first time and feeling so excited every step of the way. I could feel the energy and I loved how the setting was written perfectly. Music has been amazingly lifesaving in my own life and I could just FEEL how it was invigorating to her and stirred something inside her. I was a little nervous at points in the book to think this story was going to follow the trend of romance being what redeems or saves someone but Leila stayed true to the title and Elise truly is one of the most kickass characters ever.

ALSO TO NOTE…the supporting characters are MY FAVORITE EVER. Seriously. I loved so many of them that I could write 5 more paragraphs but I WON’T…just please go open this book and meet them.

 

Absolutely LOVED this book. I expected I would LIKE it but I didn’t expect that I would feel so strongly about it and that it would have been such a touching read for me. I loved Elise’s story and the uniqueness of the setting and plot. Teenage DJ could have been a corny concept but Leila Sales nails it. Heartbreaking at times, honest and inspiring in that you don’t necessarily have to CHANGE to find yourself but you just have to see those perceived weaknesses or quirks as your strength and learn to be comfortable in your skin. The power of music and TRUE friendships that don’t try to change you also really resonated with me.


This Song Will Save Your Life by Leila Sales

 

Let’s Talk: Did you read this one?? What did you think of it — similar thoughts to mine or different? I’d love to hear them either way! Did you think the whole Char & Elise thing was going to be cliched “he saves me” storyline at certain points? Who was your fave minor character? I rather loved Mel and obviously Vicky!!

four-half-stars
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