Friday, February 7, 2014

[Review: The Sound of Us by Ashley Poston]

"The Sound of Us"
Author: Ashley Poston
Series: Radio Hearts #1
Pages: 202
Genre: New Adult, Contemporary
Date Published: December 19th, 2013
Publisher: Bloomsbury Spark
Format Read: Purchased eBook


America's favorite pop band, Roman Holiday, is done, dead, and so totally last year. For eighteen-year-old rockoholic Junie Baltimore, this is music to her ears. But when she discovers their sexy ex-lead singer hiding out on the boardwalk, her summer vacation becomes the cover story of the year.

She's willing to keep him a secret, but when a sleazy paparazzo offers her the cash she needs to save the bar her father left behind, could she sell out for the chance to save her future? Who is she kidding? That's a no-brainer...but she never planned on falling head over heels for the lead singer.

My Thoughts:

An Open Letter To The Sound Of Us,

Oh book, how conflicted you leave me.  On one hand you're one of the most quotable things I've ever read.  The highlights in my Kindle edition prove this.  Plus, you were super readable and fast and fun and music filled.  You made me think of song guessing games my dad and I still play and gave me some hilarious characters.  On the flip side you were just a bit much for me.  You were edgy and I give you props for pushing some envelopes (cause who doesn't love an envelope pusher?) but it was just a little too "in your face" with some things for my personal taste.  That being said, when you were good, you were better than great and who doesn't love that?

-The White Unicorn 

The Sound of Us is a lot of things.  It's a pop culture piece, it's a ode to classic rock, it's a story about broken people and it's got a lot of laugh inducing moments.  It also has lightsaber battles on pirate ships.  Yes, you read that correctly.  Lighsaber battles on pirate ships!  

As an author Poston really knows how to write a beautiful passage of words.  She has a way with bending them into the perfect sentence and she has a deep connection with music, you can tangibly feel her love of the stuff.  You can also feel what her characters feel, whether they are talking about something meaningful or just shooting their mouths off.  This ended up being both one of the strongest things about the book and the weakest, all in one package.  On one side we had dialogue so beautiful it would almost make you wanna shed a tear and then on the other side we had so many swear words that it was a little overwhelming.  I get that sexual references and cuss words can be funny, but it seemed to be a little overkill to me this time around.  And this is coming from a girl who usually doesn't care about this kind of stuff.

I loved the whole idea that Junie was a classic rocker at heart.  She could tell you everything about any rock song on the radio, she had a slew of band shirts and she knew her stuff.  She was healing and she was a mess.  It's always interesting to see a character who is dealing with something big, like a death in the family, and see how they react.  Junie does it all with a flare.  She goes and puts a box of neon pink dye to her hair and ends up hanging out with rock... I mean pop stars.  In the beginning she had a bit of martyr syndrome going on, but by the end she grows a pair and stands up for herself!  She turns into someone you can root for.

Perhaps my favorite characters were the guys in the book.  Roman and Boaz were awesome.  Roman was haunted and sweet at the same time and the way he treated Junie (most of the time) was dang darling to watch.  He lost his best friend and he's trying to hide from all the girls who love his band.  He's layered, he's evolving and he's got a lot of unresolved issues.  Top it all off with the lead singer vibe and you have Junie's perfect leading man.

Boaz is just a ball of crazy and he's so much fun.  He's also really rough around the edges, but it keeps things interesting.  Maggie, Junie's best friend was hilarious on so many levels.  Seriously, that girl had a mouth on her.  Really all of the secondary characters had big personalities, which worked for the book. 

Add in the fact that there is a bit of a mystery in the story and it's on point execution and you have a really cool extra layer.  The fact is no one really knows what happened to Roman Holiday's female band member Holly, but they do know that she's dead.  It adds needed tension to the plot.  It gives Roman a reason to hide (even if he doesn't do it well) and it gives Junie a reason to find him.  Which leads us to an epic game of cat and mouse!

If you're looking for a music filled, romance tinged, New Adult novel be sure not to miss out on this one.  Every classic rock lover will appreciate it, I'm sure of that.

     3 Unicorns = I liked it a lot but it had it's issues!    


Kirsty-Marie Jones said...

I'm always wary of books to do with music, I guess the ones I've read always end up cheesy (because I'm totally that person who takes music seriously), but it would get me out of my comfort zone, right? I love swearing in mine, because I just don't find them realistic otherwise, but if it's overkill, sounds like it's trying too hard. I love that the secondary characters actually have personalities, since most of the time they really don't Glad you enjoyed it, even if it wasn't perfect. :( Great review! :)

Giselle said...

I love the addition of music in this one. Junie (awesome name, too) sounds like a fun and down to earth character. I also like how well developed even the side cast seems to be! That's always important to me in this genre especially. The mystery also sounds well woven into it all. Great review, love!

Emily Anne said...

The characters and music in this book sound like so much fun... too bad about all the swear words. Normally, I don't mind if there are some bad words, but there is a point where the author goes beyond having realistic dialogue... and the dialouge starts to sound ridiculous. I have read a few books where the authors wrote swearwords every other sentence, and it always hinders my enjoyment. The mystery, music, and great cast sound right up my alley though. Thanks for the review!

Nicole said...

Can I start by saying that I love these new letters you are opening your reviews with? They are really great :) Also Happy Belated Blogoversary! I'm so glad we met through blogging!

As for this book... I want to read more books with strong music elements. I haven't read many, but those that I have (like The Reece Malcolm List) I really loved that part of the story. I haven't really ventured into the NA category and I know there was some things you didn't like about this, but since it also had some really great moments i'll add it to my TBR for the future! Great review (as always) :)