About The Songs of Us
Fans of Jojo Moyes, Cecilia Ahern and Marian Keyes will love The Songs of Us by Emma Cooper, a laugh-out-loud, funny and heartbreaking novel of love, loss and what it means to be a family.
If Melody hadn't run out of de-icer that day, she would never have slipped and banged her head. She wouldn't be left with a condition that makes her sing when she's nervous. And she definitely wouldn't have belted out the Arctic Monkeys' 'I Bet You Look Good on the Dancefloor' in assembly at her son's school.
If Dev hadn't taken the kids to the zoo that day, then the accident wouldn't have happened. He wouldn't have left Flynn and Rose without a dad. Or shattered the love of his life's heart.
But if they hadn't seen the missing person report that day, they might never have taken the trip to Cornwall. And, in the last place they expected, discovered what it really means to be 'Us'.
My review of The Songs of Us
What an absolute joy this book was to read. It was a family drama, mystery, love story and dark comedy all rolled into one delicious and quirky book. I couldn't help but fall in love with it. It's a truly unique read.
The Songs of Us rotates around the central character, Melody, who after suffering a head injury bursts into song when feeling anxious and under stress. This can be at the supermarket checkout or when sat in the Head Teacher's office. So, very funny, yet poignant at the same time. I loved Melody. I loved her for her honesty, her vitality and the fact that her children were simply her world.
Which brings me onto the likeable children in the book, Flynn and Rose. Very often when we read kids in books they can be oversentimilised, and appear as no child would in real life. But, these two were incredibly real characters to me. They evoked beautifully the feelings of embarrassment and pure frustration when their mother spontaneously broke out into song. I could feel their frustrations, their love, pride and sheer embarasment. On the flip side we also learn of Melody's fierce need to protect her children when this happens. These scenes I found incredibly poignant and thought provoking, providing a clever mix between humour and pathos.
This novel does deal with traumatic events, disability and prejudice, but, these themes are surrounded with just the right amount of humour, so that what we end up with is a book tackling serious themes but which is incredibly easy to relate to and ultimately enjoy.
The Songs of Us is very much about being in the wrong place at the wrong time. It's a story about the role that fate plays in shaping all of our lives. To put it simply, this is a beautiful book. It made me laugh and cry, all while reading the sane page. It's a bittersweet story of family life, and that a mother really will do everything she can to protect her family and to build a home. This book really is something very special. It's a beautifully fragile and quirky read that I loved. And oh, the ending. Perfect, just perfect!
With thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for the Advanced Reader Copy.
The Songs of Us is available now in ebook and will be published in paperback on 20th September by Headline Review.