What are the five best books I’ve read paired with a song? Glad you asked. Challenge accepted.

In no particular order (thanks to Jeremy for recommending the first two books), but this was not an easy list because I’ve read many wonderful books. I tried though to think about books that really impressed me.


#1 The Grisha Trilogy by Leigh Bardugo + Still Corners – The Trip

I devoured this fantasy series. I loved her humor, the characters, everything. I can’t wait to see what Netflix does with these, but at the same time, I could see myself reading these again – and that, my friend is the sign of a good book.

If you’ve read these then you’ll appreciate the pairing, but even if you haven’t, this is a great song that sets a kind of road trip / spinning-in-circles-with-your-arms-wide mood.

#2 The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller + The Lighthouse Tale – by Nickel Creek

OH. MY. GOD. This was such a lush retelling of a classic, but not really the story you think it’s going to be. This book led me to Circe and that tells me how much I love an author, when I want to read everything else by them.

If you’ve read the book, you’ll understand why I chose this song. Even though it’s a story song told from the perspective of a lighthouse, and it’s a bluegrass tune, which might seem odd paired with a Greek myth – it works, damn it, it works.

#3 The Other Boleyn Girl by Philippa Gregory + Dusty Springfield’s Son of a Preacher Man

This was the first book that I read by Philippa Gregory. [And no, I never watched the movie, looks horrible.] I fell in love and have since read most of her books including her crazy Wideacre series. You know what it was? I didn’t want to go to bed. I just wanted to keep reading and reading.

Bein’ good isn’t always easy
No matter how hard I try
When he started sweet-talkin’ to me
He’d come’n tell me “Everything is all right”
He’d kiss and tell me “Everything is all right”
Can I get away again tonight?

I mean, can’t you hear Anne Boleyn singing this about ‘ol Henry?


#4 Castle Roogna by Piers Anthony + Werwolf – Journey to the land of the flying pigs


A few years ago, I decided to try a fantasy series I never got into as a child. Then, I did something that I’ve never done and proceeded to read books 1 to 29 non-stop (out of 40+). The series has spanned from 1977 to now. Castle Roogna has a special place in my heart though because of a jumping spider character brought to larger life.

Now I doubt very seriously anyone has heard this song (if you have and you like it, then you get a zillion points), but it seems like a perfect pairing – takes you on a journey, doesn’t take itself too seriously, and rocks out.


#5 The Martian by Andy Weir + 5 Hours of Relaxing Psychedelic Space Rock – Travel Dos

Did I see the movie? Yes. Did I read the book first? Yes, I did. Is the book better? OH YES. I’ve recommended this book before, but I was having too much trouble deciding between other fantasy books, so I decided to go sci-fi (because space rock). It was the level of detail that left a lasting impression, something that movies can’t really do. It was smart and accessible.

Happy psychedelic space rockin’!


What are some of the best books you’ve read?

22 replies on “Discover Prompts, Day 9: Pairs

  1. So your collection makes me think you should definitely read Shadow Castle if you haven’t already. It’s written for kids, and the interesting thing is when you look it up online, it seems everyone has the same old, battered copy, and we all love it to pieces. Definitely worth adding to your collection, I think you’ll enjoy it immensely! I am reading Circe now – two of my best friends sent it to me as a birthday present and I am trying so hard to sloooooooooow down to take it all in!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Awesome! Thanks. Shadow Castle is next after I dive into more of Leigh’s Grishaverse.

      Circe seems almost too perfect for isolation times. It was hard to read slowly though.

      Hope you are well, glad to see you blogging again 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  2. What a great post! I very much enjoyed ‘Six of Crows’ and its sequel so am intrigued by Leigh Bardugo’s other books.
    The Martian is WAY better than the movie – which is still pretty great. I read the book first and persuaded my reluctant wife to go see the movie. She protested that space movies were not her thing but my assertion that the book was both very funny and utterly unputdownable, plus the presence of Matt Damon, convinced her. She came home and immediately devoured the book…
    I love your music choices. I like Still Corners and Dusty anyway. But I had not heard of Werwolf and really enjoyed this track.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I didn’t think it was possible for you to gain more awesome points, Darren, but congrats you did.

      I’m reading Six of Crows now!!! After putting the list I was reminded she had other books. Yes, the trilogy is AUH-MAZING.

      I agree with The Martian. I did like the movie. It didn’t take away from the book, but became its own story in a way. The book though – the book! Glad your wife liked it.

      Glad you liked the music choices. It was such a fun challenge. Made me think, it did, smoke pouring out of the ‘ol ears… hahahhaa.


      1. Thank you Lani, you are too kind. Or equally awesome of course😉😍
        My wife just started Six of Crows and I am wondering how she will find it.
        I can honestly say that The Martian is the first book in decades I found literally unputdownable.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. I’m enjoying Six of Crows. If she doesn’t like it, I think the Grisha trilogy could be a softer opener into this universe, but I don’t know what her tastes are!

        Sci-fi for the masses is hard to pull off, The Martian did just that. Cheers!


      3. She tells me that there are a lot of flashback scenes (I don’t recall) and these do mess with her head – she much prefers a linear plot. Same goes for movies – she is not good with faces for example, so indicating a flashback scene simply by making an actor look younger does not work.

        Liked by 1 person

      4. Yes, she’s right. There are a lot of flashbacks and each chapter is a different character so I can see how that might get confusing. Ah, well…The Grisha Trilogy doesn’t change point of views, but it does have flashbacks.


  3. Yayy book recs! I’m going to look them up and add them to my list. Excited to find out more about the Grisha trilogy in particular. And yes, the Martian movie wasn’t able to capture some of that humor from the book, but I still enjoyed both. 😄 Also wasn’t one of the characters (Park? I think…?) Korean in the book, but was cast as a white actress?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I do remember that controversy now that you mention it. Oooo, they wouldn’t do that these days, would they?

      Yes, I’m reading more from Leigh and the Grisha universe. I started it last night and I’m excited to read more. xo


  4. What a cool idea to pair books for songs. Had me thinking which I’d choose. Agree with the Bluegrass pairing…it works!
    We’d both probably the ‘Six of Crows’…haven’t read that yet.
    By the way did you read Raymond Feist’s ‘The Magician’ and the sequels? Or Le Guin’s Earthsea Trilogy? Both reminded me of the Grisha books…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yeah, I liked the idea too. It was an interesting challenge and took me a while, but enjoyed it.

      Six of Crows feels darker, grittier, but with the humor and the good pacing (don’t want to stop).

      I don’t think I have read Feist or Le Gurin’s books, thanks for the recommendations! Excited to have so many good books to read. Whoohooo!


  5. Good marketer. =)

    So many titles. Anthony Doerr is amazing, his prose poetry. He took 10 yrs to write All the Light We Cannot See, writing other books along the way. I wasn’t crazy about his style at first for that one, but then learned and understood the clipped pace and bite-sized chapters went with the sleep-deprived initiation into fatherhood over twins. The book deserved the Pulitzer it scored. He describes a blind girl who managed to open a can of peaches: “she’s eating wedges of wet sunlight.” Oh, oh, oh.

    He speaks of her father: “He made her the glowing hot center of his life; he made her feel as if every step she took was important.”

    The Signature of All Things by Elizabeth Gilbert is the real deal. Steak. Some of the characters move me still in the loss they embraced, years later. The book deserved a Pulitzer, but Eat, Pray, Love cut in, titillating the masses with sugar.


    1. All the Light We Cannot See made another list years ago because YES it was such an amazing read, definitely a page turner and one to soak up like those peaches.

      I’ll remember what you said about The Signature by Gilbert because I’m speed reading through The Six of Crows duology right now – love it.



      1. Noted. Yes, books are like music – even things that we feel have universal appeal may not!


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