• The cover of the book The Commitments

    The Commitments

    Another great book that was turned into a hilarious film with a rocking soundtrack, The Commitments chronicles the lives of the Dublin working-class young men and women who form the band. The members discover American Soul music and how it speaks to their class identities. As they embrace the sound and perform the songs, they find meaning in the music and in each other.

     
  • The cover of the book City Kid

    City Kid

    Nelson George has earned a reputation as one of the premier scholars of hip hop. His love for the music he listened to coming up became the basis for his Netflix series, The Get Down. In his memoir, George records his life in four of New York’s boroughs, Detroit, Los Angeles, and the Tidewater area of Virginia, as a “city kid” is raised on music and nurtured by his family’s love.

     
  • The cover of the book The Music Shop

    The Music Shop

    Frank owns such a music shop, and he possesses the near-magic ability to match customers up with the new music they need to hear. That level of listening should make it easy for Frank to meet women, but here, his skills don’t seem to work. One day, Ilse walks into the shop and she asks Frank to teach her about music. Thus begins a relationship full of tender humor and quiet joy that is complicated by Frank’s terror of getting close.

     
  • The cover of the book A Visit from the Goon Squad

    A Visit from the Goon Squad

    Jennifer Egan was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for the collection of characters she created in this tour-de-force of a novel. Told in chapters that resemble short stories, readers first meet Sasha, whose compulsion to steal is complicating her life, and Bennie, her boss, who owns a hip record company in contemporary New York. The novel’s supporting cast of characters who populate Egan’s time-traveling narrative include former band mates, struggling musicians, and assorted hangers-on looking for musical redemption.

     
  • The cover of the book Utopia Avenue

    Utopia Avenue

    In his fictional imagining of the 1960s music scene, David Mitchell presents the band, Utopia Avenue, which took a shot at rock stardom and created two albums that had everyone raving. But a desire to be “rock stars” soon brings its members unexpected consequences. Set against the backdrop of the momentous societal changes that rocked Europe and the United States in the Sixties, Mitchell tells a rock story for the ages.

     
  • The cover of the book Nick & Norah's Infinite Playlist (Movie Tie-in Edition)

    Nick & Norah's Infinite Playlist (Movie Tie-in Edition)

    Nick’s a mess with a broken heart. Norah is questioning everything. Their random encounter at an indie rock show leads them on an epic quest through the clubs of New York City in a search for a rumored gig by a legendary band. Will their club-hopping lead to a meaningful connection? After you read the book, check out the film starring Michael Cera and Kat Dennings.

     
  • The cover of the book Talking to Girls About Duran Duran

    Talking to Girls About Duran Duran

    Rock journalist Rob Sheffield’s second memoir about how specific songs played out in his life is full of the self-lacerating humor and emotional reveals that made Love Is a Mixtape a hit. Whether he’s talking about how his dream was to be the only boy in The Go-Gos, to how his stint as an ice cream man cemented his love for “Purple Rain,” Sheffield documents those magic moments when a song makes us feel better about everything.

     
  • The cover of the book The Invisibility Cloak

    The Invisibility Cloak

    Ge Fei’s protagonist lives in modern Beijing where he builds custom audio equipment for wealthy clients. The craftsman portrays his spoiled clients in wry details that also offer commentary on China’s rapidly changing culture and economy. But in his more vulnerable moments, he reveals that he’s still carrying a torch for his ex-wife. His humorous observations on the lengths to which certain audiophiles will go for the right sound are a delight.