Book in Review: Strange Sweet Song by Adi Rule6:30 PM
Title: Strange Sweet Song
Author: Adi Rule
Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin
Hardcover: 336 pages
Rating: 5 awestruck stars/ 5 also awestruck stars
NOOOOOO! I didn't want to give this book 5 stars. It wasn't because the book wasn't nice. It was because it felt like surrendering to this book's beauty, this book's charm. I saw all the 5-star and 4-star reviews of this book and thought to myself, I won't fall for it! I was so wrong. I'm here now writing a 5-star review of Strange Sweet Song.
I'll be starting with a synopsis of this book.
Sing da Navelli is the daughter of Barbara da Navelli, a famous opera singer. Since her mother died during her lead role as Angelique in Angelique, she has strived to be the next Barbara da Navelli. The only problem is that she isn't a diva like her mother. When she arrives at her new school, she finds out that her school will be having a play, Angelique.
Her father does not know that her school is putting on Angelique which is why Sing was free to audition. She gets a role (I won't say which role) and starts having voice practice with Apprentice Daysmoor. She doesn't like Daysmoor from the very start. He's a grumpy, mean, emotionless man but is he really?
Sing realizes that everything is not how it seems. She faces a lot of challenges. She finds love in the most unexpected place. She runs into betrayal. But most of all, she finds herself.
This book was very original. There was enough hinting at was gonna happen that it didn't leave you utterly confused and enough restraint that you didn't feel like there were spoilers. Some may say that Adi hinted too much but I thought it was just right. I loved how Sing's name wasn't just a random choice that the author picked to make the book nicer. It was a conscious decision and affected a lot of things in the book. She was able to emphasize the pressure put on Sing. She was also able to show how Daysmoor helped her find herself without being the sole (or even main) cause for her determination to finally find herself and get better.
WARNING: THIS PART MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS!!!
I appreciated how Sing didn't get the lead role. It was realistic. The whole book, despite its fantasy aspects, was realistic. It took me quite a bit of time to like Sing but she grew on me. You could understand why she felt so much pressure. She made mistakes too and was at times selfish. She got a boyfriend, Ryan Larkin, but when she discovers that Ryan had been cheating on her, she didn't make a fuss about it. She didn't make this whole plan to get him back or get revenge. It didn't even seem important at that moment. She was basically like, "You cheated on me? Well, whatever, your problem.". Of course she was hurt a bit but she did state that even when Ryan started dating Lori, the girl who got the lead role in Angelique, she didn't care all that much. Oh, and if this isn't too much I will say, happy ending over here people!
NO MORE SPOILERS!!! (I THINK)
Since I didn't read the synopsis, I didn't really know who she was gonna end up with so I was mildly shocked to find out who it was. Since I didn't know the author, I didn't know whether or not she would give me a sad ending or happy ending. I was worried that if she ended the book sadly, I would get frustrated at the emotions I've spent in this book. I was also worried that if she ended the book happily, I would appreciate the story less but as you can see, none of that has happened.
The writing was beautiful and I was never bored. I loved the alternating POVs (although I'm not sure if you call them POVs since they're written in the 3rd-person POV but anyway, I'll just call it POV) and when it all came together, it didn't feel forced. The real aspects and the fantasy aspects went well together and the tying together of both worlds was practically seamless.
I cannot even begin to thank the author for providing me with an ARC of this book. I loved it and am looking forward to reading more of her work. I believe that Adi is a great writer and I hope she keeps it up.
This book would be perfect for people who like the fantasy genre. It is also for those who are fascinated with music. For anyone who is looking for a good and original book, this one's for you.
Have you read Strange Sweet Song? What did you think about it? Leave a comment!