Like everyone else in the world, I’ve recently been listening to Taylor Swift’s new album folklore and like everyone else in the world, I’m a little bit obsessed.
So I thought I would make a post matching some of my favorite tracks from the record to books I’ve read. I’m sure this has been done before and will be done to death, but I WANNA DO IT TOO. And who knows, maybe my favorites and picks are different than yours and maybe you’ll find a new book to add to your ever growing TBR. *gazes mournfully at bedside table*
6. the 1
This is a cute song about what might have been. It’s low-key chill and totally relatable. Who hasn’t lamented over a what-if when it came to an almost relationship?
I paired this song with Only Mostly Devastated by Sophie Gonzales. It’s an adorable queer romcom about the perfect summer romance. Except that summer’s over and Ollie has to deal with the fact that his relationship with Will is over too. Or is it? Ollie moves across the country and enrolls in a new school to be greeted by a much different version of Will. One who isn’t out yet. And one who’s kind of a jerk.
But we were something, don’t you think so? / Roaring twenties, tossing pennies in the pool / And if my wishes came true / It would’ve been you
5. invisible string
Another one of the cutesy songs, but much more upbeat and positive and playful. It made me smile when I first heard it because isn’t it nice to think that some people are just meant to be in each other’s lives even when they really don’t know that yet?
This tune made me think of Beach Read by Emily Henry. I don’t often read romance books, but this one was definitely up my alley (it’s an adult romance, btw). It’s about college… rivals, I guess I’d say, who might have been something more, but circumstances and life and years later, they meet again as neighbors in a beach town. Both are writers, both remember their history very differently, and both think it’s kinda crazy that they ran into each other again.
Time, curious time / Gave me no compasses, gave me no signs / Were there clues I didn’t see? And isn’t it just so pretty to think / All along there was some / Invisible string / Tying you to me?
I actually didn’t like this song the first time I heard it, but the more I listened, the more it pulled me in. I love the atmosphere of it and the vividness of the details. And it has a great melody, equal parts ferocious yearning and damning hindsight.
The Case for Jamie by Brittany Cavallaro came to mind for a few reasons, but mostly because throughout the series, Charlotte Holmes knows everything and Jamie Watson just tries to keep up and whenever he works to get some distance and perspective, he can’t quite quit her, despite really trying. Which works out ’cause, you know, she can’t quit him either, really. This book in particular (the series’ third entry) illustrates this well.
I knew you’d miss me once the thrill expired / And you’d be standin’ in my front porch light / And I knew you’d come back to me / You’d come back to me / And you’d come back to me / And you’d come back
3. mad woman
I’m pretty sure this was the first song I heard and loved off of the album. It’s dark, a little eerie, and definitely something I connected with. When enough is enough, when you get caught in a fire that someone else caused and are being blamed for not giving a shit if it burns down their house, this is the song for you.
GOD THIS SCREAMS THE BONE WITCH BY RIN CHUPECO. It’s about a girl who accidentally raises her brother from the dead and finds out she has a rare gift, which both ostracizes and makes her incredibly powerful simultaneously. When she goes to train so she can use her powers, she realizes what she’s been taught, and what everyone’s always been told about their world and ways, is not the whole truth.
And there’s nothing like a mad woman / What a shame she went mad / No one likes a mad woman / You made her like that / And you’ll poke that bear ’til her claws come out / And you find something to wrap your noose around / And there’s nothing like a mad woman
This was actually one of the last songs I heard on the album (I don’t have Spotify premium so tracks were randomly played) and I just… really liked it? The soft lilting piano and the simplicity of the lyrics paired with the honesty in it just worked for me. Imagine my surprise when I found out that it’s one of the least liked songs.
Immediately this reminded me of The Winner’s Curse by Marie Rutkoski which is about a girl named Kestrel who lives a complicated and difficult life as a general’s daughter running out of options. She impulse buys a slave at the market because she senses a kindredness of spirit and ends up getting way more than she bargained for at a much higher cost.
My only one / My smoking gun / My eclipsed sun / This has broken me down / My twisted knife / My sleepless night / My winless fight / This has frozen my ground
Unsurprisingly, this seems to be one of the most popular songs on the record and it’s because it’s Just That Good. I’ve always loved Bon Iver so when I heard they collaborated I was excited and I just LOVE this song. The way they sing together and the way the music blends throughout the whole nearly 5 minutes is just perfect.
I’m 100% positive someone has already paired this with The Queen of Nothing by Holly Black, the last book in The Folk of the Air series, and it just makes perfect sense. After the events of the first two books between Jude and Cardan, I mean, it’s just… so fitting. Jude struggles to find her place after being betrayed and LOL exiled from Faerie and y’know, Cardan mopes.
I’m not your problem anymore / So who am I offending now? / You were my crown, now I’m in exile, seein’ you out
If you haven’t listened to folklore, you should give it a go. Here’s the Youtube playlist for the album. Come back and let me know what you think? Do you agree with my choices or am I reaching? And honestly, if you just want something chill to listen to while you go about your day, this record is a pretty good pick and like these books, it’s full of stories. After all, it’s kind of the point of the whole album, right?
🎶 What are your faves from the album?
🎶 Did any books come to mind while listening?
🎶 Do you have any book playlists you’ve enjoyed?
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