Published: September 17, 2013
Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR)
Pages: 288 (Hardcover)
My Rating: 5 of 5 stars
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.
This Song Will Save Your Life is unbelievably relatable. It's real. It's what many teenagers go through all the time. Leila Sales doesn't miss anything in this book. The emotions of a teenage girl that questions why people would want to be around her and is bullied because she's different is captured beautifully.
The main character, Elise is at the bottom of the social ladder. She gets picked on by many people and believes that the entire school hates her just she because she doesn't fit what everyone else thinks is "normal". The honesty about what it's really like to be a teenager in her position is what really makes this book special. Plus her voice is unique and even though this book deals with some very serious topics, I found myself smiling and laughing at Elise's sense of humor.
The side characters in the book weren't cardboard cuts outs. They had their own personality and many of them dealt with their own problems with themselves. Each of them were there for a purpose. It was nice to see that the bullies in this book had more to them then just being mean to Elise.
The best part of the book has to be the DJ club that Elise goes to called Start. The way it is described made me feel like I was right there with Elise. I had no idea what DJing was like until I read this book. I loved how Elise didn't master being a DJ right away. In so many books the main character barely has to work to be good at a new skill but Elise devoted her self to DJing for weeks.
I wasn't a huge fan of Char because he was a complete jerk most of the time. I did like that he taught Elise how to DJ so I don't completely hate him but what he does to Elise and Pippa is unforgivable. I was so happy with how it ended because it didn't end up the way I thought it would.
Once I started reading I could barely stop. I loved how realistic this book is. Right down to the part about how schools deal with bullying. I wish there were more books like this.