September 8, 2010

Songs for a Teenage Nomad (Kim Culbertson) Review

Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire (September 7, 2010)
Paperback: 256 pages
Book from Publisher
What is the soundtrack of your life?

After living in twelve places in eight years, Calle Smith finds herself in Andreas Bay, California, at the start of ninth grade. Another new home, another new school...Calle knows better than to put down roots. Her song journal keeps her moving to her own soundtrack, bouncing through a world best kept at a distance.

Yet before she knows it, friends creep in-as does an unlikely boy with a secret. Calle is torn over what may be her first chance at love. With all that she's hiding and all that she wants, can she find something lasting beyond music? And will she ever discover why she and her mother have been running in the first place? (Source)

SONGS FOR A TEENAGE NOMAD, by Kim Culbertson, is a marvelous story of a girl finally finding a place to fit in and learning the truth of her past. Culbertson created a fantastic world that focused on music and what it is like to be different and not caring if you fit in. Calle was used to moving around California with her mother and was okay with that until she found people that she truly cared about and wanted anything but to lose them. She finally was able to have a "normal" high school life until she fell in love and discovered family secrets that threatened her relationship with her mother.

I am the type of music-lover that knows when I like a song but have no idea who it is by or when it was done (or re-done for that matter). Culbertson showed me how music can really affect and dictate a person's life. For Calle, music reminded her of her mother's past relationships and she kept them in a diary like a photo-album of her life. It was fascinating how Calle did not shy away from her feelings of her mother's past husbands/boyfriends, but saw them as events in her life that were stepping stones. I enjoyed getting into Calle's mind. She is a great character that is so strong and full of love. I loved her sass and sarcasm even when she found it embarrassing when talking to Sam.

There were so many dimensions in this book that were unexpected and kept me glued to the book. I actually finished it in one sitting! Just when I thought I knew what was going on, I was pushed into another direction completely. Nothing was what it seemed and I think that was the point. In high school (and anywhere else for that matter), rumors can blow up out of proportion and family/relationship secrets are wrongfully spread. I was very surprised after peeling the layers of each of the characters down to the core that everyone had issues and no one was perfect. I think, especially in YA books, that this is a great concept to comprehend because that popular boy that you think you have no chance with, may just need someone like you in his life.

Overall, this was a great romantic and musical read and I definitely recommend it.

For more info check out Kim Culbertson's website

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