How are you? Life in London is quite grey at the moment. The season of jumpers and leather jackets has officially started and while L has already got his first cold, I stand healthy and strong for now. We’ve spent the past few weeks strolling around our area with friends, buying cheese at the local markets and watching new series on Netflix. Nothing outstanding or out of the ordinary, really. But we all know it’s just the calm before the storm…
I have to say I’ve recently been listening to a lot of music lately, which may have been a side effect of us trying to catch up with the new season of X-Factor Italia. I also discovered a new group that’s been on top of my playlist lately thanks to a blog post from a UK blogger. I thought of doing the same as she did so today I’ll share some soundtracks with you, as well as the usual book recommendations. Let me know what you think of it!
So these are the songs and the books I’ve been into lately:
Handwritten, Gaslight Anthem
I’ll start with the song that inspired me to write this post. I found that in a blog post by Inthefrow, aka Victoria McGrath. What I love about this song is that one word, handwritten. I love writing, I do handwrite diaries, letters, stories and I know how true and painful and liberating it is. To me, that song is about that liberating pain, mixed with love (because there cannot be writing without love) and the night, which is the time when all the most exciting things in life happen. It is a tale and every time you hear it, you grab a different note, a different word, a new meaning. I like it because I’ll never stop rediscovering the lyrics and because it reminds me that after all, that pen is in my hand, it is for me to decide what to write on the pages of my book.
Not to mention the band is insanely good, the singer has a marvellous voice and I just really like their genre.
Will Grayson, Will Grayson by John Green and David Levithan
I found this book on the bookshelves at a London station (don’t remember which one) so first of all, thank you TfL for having introduced book sharing in almost all tube stations. It makes our commute way less boring.
This book is about two teenagers who share the same first and last name. One Will suffers from depression and the other Will is slowly learning how to start dating girls and embrace his emotions. The latter also has a very special best friend called Tiny. He’s actually huge and has a great personality, he’s a loving person that goes through life with a smile on his face and he was definitely my favourite character of the story.
What I liked about this book is that the main characters are almost all boys and half of them are gay. I am pretty sure this is the first book I read about gay teenagers, mainly because I normally read either books about behavioural economics or just novels about adults. I have to say it was extremely interesting as it opened my eyes to a world that is still pretty new to me. The authors engage with the topic in a very unpretentious and honest way, they build their characters through various levels of newly found identities because that’s what being a teenager is, discovering who you are. The book is well written, the plot is engaging so yes, I’d totally recommend it!
Aria, J Ax
This is a melancholic, not-so-new Italian song about a breakup. The singer compares the ex-girlfriend to air, air that belongs to everybody and to no-one, air that can be polluted with a cigarette, air that the singer still breathes to keep going. I’ve been listening to this song for over ten years now and I am yet to get bored with the lyrics, to me this song is a little piece of poetry. The music of this song is as tired as I feel when I leave the office in the evening, that’s why I like to listen to it on my way to the tube station. This song is what is left of all the past years when I was a troubled teenager, listening to it makes me feel nostalgic but also grateful that I’ve made it, I’m here, I’ve gone through everything and I’m in a whole new world now.
Demons, Imagine Dragons
This song became quite popular a few years ago and it was dedicated to a fan of the group, who died of cancer at the age of 17 (you can see that towards the end of the video clip). This song is very close to my heart because it speaks of the troubles we face in life, how those experiences become part of who we are and it is up to us whether to accept that and go on or stop and complaint and find excuses forever. Every time I listen to this song, I lift my head and look at the world around me thinking that I can do it. I can be stronger than my fears and I can go on, do what I need to do to follow my dreams and become the person I’ve always dreamt of. No matter what happened to me or what the demons inside say, I am stronger than that.
Demons is not the only song from Imagine Dragons that inspires me and helps me going through life. There are several songs I love from this band, another one being Pain. It was my little sister L that made me listen to it at first so I have to thank her for this. Pain is about how we all have to earn what we wish for, that nothing in life comes easy but that doesn’t mean we can’t achieve our goals. We just need to keep fighting even when the future looks doomed and people don’t believe in us. As long as we keep working hard, we will get where we want to in the end.
Hall of fame, The Script
Everybody has a dream and we all want to achieve it, so we’d better start doing something about it. Who knows what’s gonna happen next, if we’ll succeed or not, but first let’s try really, really hard. I always feel like I’ve just started and I’ve got so much to do, I’m only at the beginning of a very long journey. I have no idea whether I’ll be able to walk the whole way but as the song says, dedicating yourself to it is the key.
The first step for me has been finding something where to invest all my energies on and after a handful of wrong ideas and projects, I think I’ve found the one. I’ll keep you posted!
And then, of course, there’s our wedding song, which is extremely romantic and for once, doesn’t have a tragic ending. However, you’ll have to wait a few more posts to read about that one! I’m sure you won’t be disappointed.
Let me know if you enjoyed this post and what’s your song of the moment!