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The Song Reader

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3.44  ·  Rating details ·  2,291 Ratings  ·  163 Reviews
From a talented new voice in fiction comes a novel complete with unforgettable characters and unforgettable songs.

Leeann's older sister Mary Beth has a gift. When the two sisters are left alone after the death of their mother and the disappearance of their father, Mary Beth becomes the hero of both her younger sister and their entire town. She is a "song reader." She doesn
...more
Paperback, 314 pages
Published May 1st 2003 by Downtown Press (first published January 1st 2003)
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whichwaydidshego?
Jan 02, 2008 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: People who feel.
When I think of “Chick Lit,” I don’t think of books by women but rather I think romance and fluff. Sure, this novel is as easy to read as tepid butter is when spread on hot toast in summer, but it’s not fluff. It’s about the every day, complicated, real life of family. It’s about how growing up – whether in an unusual or an average family – is rarely easy. It’s about relationships and emotions and all the ways we avoid as well as work through them. It’s also about compassion.

When the title char
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Carol
Mar 31, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: owned-books
Cute story, but I didn't like the ending so much. It was an open ending and no real conclusion. I wish there had been another chapter or so to wind things up. Instead, I don't know what became of the characters. Strong storyline but weak ending.
Sisma Dwi
Mar 12, 2013 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: terjemahan, pinjem
Mari saya ringkas isi novel ini:

Novel ini berkisah tentang Mary Beth yang tinggal bersama adiknya Leeaan di sebuah kota kecil Tainer. Mereka hanya tinggal berdua semenjak sang ayah pergi dan ibu mereka meninggal dunia akibat kecelakaan lalu lintas. Mary Beth bekerja sebagai pramusaji restoran untuk membiayai hidupnya bersama sang adik, Leeaan yang masih SMA. Mary Beth memiliki semacam kemampuan untuk 'menerawang' seseorang. Bukan dengan kartu tarot, bola kristal, ataupun membaca pikiran. Tapi de
...more
Jessica
This book would also make a good book group discussion, but it was stressful and emotionally draining to read. When it was over I was so relieved it was over, even though the end didnt really wrap up and explain everything as well as I would have liked, I was left wondering, what did that mean, are they going, are they staying? I'm confused.
Bridget
Lisa Tucker's books always feel almost really good, but are always missing that one thing that makes them great. This is the third book of hers that I've read now, and they've all been solidly entertaining (and fairly quick reads) but are never all the memorable and I never feel compelled to recommend them to anyone else.

This book is much the same. I enjoyed the book, but there is definitely a sad undercurrent of what it's like for a young high school girl to grow up very fast and realize tha
...more
Amy
Dec 09, 2008 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: bookcrossing
I picked this up initially because I always have a song or two rambling through my head, and often spilling out over my lips. It can be anything from Immittet Angelus to the theme from Sesame Street. No wait. That's a bad example. There's actually a musical relationship between those two. How about anything from Stardust to When You Wish Upon a Star. No wait. This is harder than I thought. How about Greensleeves to Happy Trails to You (which is the song I want played at my funeral, by the way)? ...more
Heather
Jun 28, 2011 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fans of Lisa Tucker - it's pretty much like her others. Mediocre.
Shelves: young-adult
This book was a hot mess. I mean, I literally finished it, put it down, and said aloud, "Wow - that was a hot mess!" It was actually fairly entertaining and I enjoyed it most of the way along, until I reached the end and realized that nothing really got resolved or made any sense. If you don't think you will care, then it's an easy read and you might enjoy it anyway.

B- I own a copy from swap so you can have it if you want!
Brianon Sheffield
great book.... until the crap ending.
Devon
May 09, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Lately I have found myself venturing away from the type of book that I would normally read and becoming a more well rounded literature and fiction reader. Most often I have been pleasantly surprised by my selections and The Song Reader by Lisa Tucker was definitely a pleasant surprise! When I read the synopsis on the back of the book I expected something completely different from what I got from this compelling first novel. I thought that I was reading a light hearted book about a woman who read ...more
ashley | citygirlscapes
I picked this book up because of the title - The Song Reader - and thought the description of song reading was an interesting and creative concept I hadn't really thought about before.

It was marketed as kind of a chick lit book, so I figured it'd be light and fluffy and an easy read about music and growing up, but it was actually quite darker and heavier than I expected. In a good way of course.

I'm always so inspired by characters, even if they are just fictional characters, who are put upon an
...more
Lightblue
Jan 09, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
L'idea che le canzoni che ascoltiamo e che ci rimangono in testa in qualche modo siano un messaggio di quello che siamo e di quello che abbiamo dentro è veramente intrigante. Mentre leggevo cercavo di ripensare alle colonne sonore della mia vita e volevo capire se in qualche modo mi rappresentassero.
Detto questo, il libro è davvero molto coinvolgente e scritto bene. E' la storia di due sorelle, Mary Beth (che ha appunto questo "dono" di leggere le canzoni) e LeeAnn, molto giovane e sensibile. R
...more
Mireille
Jan 21, 2012 rated it liked it
This book was OK.
It tells the story of Mary Beth, Leann's big sister,who has a sort of a musical gift : the people who come to her tell her which songs are stuck in their heads and Mary Beth is able to give them some advice about their current problems.
Leann is the narrator of this story. She's very admirative of her big sister who raised her since their mom died. She was my favourite character, I could see her coming out of age since the book follows these sisters for a few years. She was a nor
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Erin
Apr 14, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition


I enjoyed this book for the most part. It was a very sad story, but I found the song reading a unique plot device, and felt like I connected with the main character. I can't imagine how hard dealing with everything would be for a sixteen year old, but I felt like the author captured that fairly realistically.

I had minor issues with some of the other characters here and there, but my main issue was with the ending. It felt so abrupt, as if the author had a word limit and had to rush the last fe
...more
Ferina
Ternyata novel ini gak sesuai ‘ekspektasi’ gue. Gue pikir bakal berbau-bau thriller gitu. Yang awalnya gue bayangin, Mary Beth ‘membaca’ lagu, terus ternyata lagu itu ‘menghantui’ dia. Novel ini lebih banyak ke drama-nya. Meskipun gue akui, ide pembaca lagu ini keren, karena sampai saat ini yang gue tau ya berkisar di tarot, peramal kartu atau garis tangan, atau pake bola kristal.... Gue berharap ada misteri yang ‘mencekam’… Dan, soal pembacaan lagunya pun gak terlalu banyak diceritain.
Kristen
May 07, 2011 rated it liked it
A nice book about a girl who can help people figure out what their problems are by the songs they are drawn to or can't get out of their head. Its the lyrics of the songs that effect people. An interesting read but a little dark. So many people in Leeann's life with mental problems made me kinda sad when I finished.
Laila
Jan 21, 2010 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I liked the general premise; that memories are often stored with music, or our associations with music and that could make a much more interesting book than this was. Cutesy, quick read, forgettable.
Morgan
Dec 01, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
3.5 stars. Better than your average fluff, interesting concept.
Anne Freya
Oct 12, 2011 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: novel
Mary Beth. Sudah kuduga ada yg tdk beres dgn isi kepala wanita ini saat aku membaca pendapatnya bahwa org gila itu sesungguhnya org yg berani krn mrk memilih jalan yg tdk berani dilakukan sebagian besar org.
Sebagai org yg pernah bersinggungan dgn bbrp orang-waras-yg-memilih-menjadi-gila dlm hidupku, aku berpendapat kalau memilih menjadi gila itu adalah tindakan pengecut dan lemah krn melarikan diri dari masalah, tak peduli seberapa berat pun masalahnya, krn sesungguhnya masih banyak org yg memi
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Georgia Hamlin
Jul 16, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: music
Good book with a strong concept that should have held together better. Instead, the last third of the book doesn't hold up with the creativity of the story's opening. I loved the idea of a woman who is a modern day fortune teller by reading people's future's though the songs that they listen to. When she makes a mistake, the whole methodology is called into question and leaves a pair of sisters in misery.
Shaun
Jul 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Ein geschenktes Buch, dessen Titel und Cover mich nicht grad haben aus dem Häuschen fahren lassen. Aber wieder einmal ist es genau so ein Buch, das mich am Ende vor Berührung weinen lässt.
Danke, liebe Freundin, die du mir dieses schöne Buch geschenkt hat!
Zwischendurch fand ich es sogar mal eine Phase etwas zu langatmig und habe mich beim Überlesen erwischt. Aber nichtsdestotrotz: Es lohnt sich auf jeden Fall dran zu bleiben. Ein tolles Buch!
Dr Dabbler
Mar 04, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I bought this book because I was intrigued by the idea of song reading. The story is nicely structured, with interesting characters, and I didn't want to put it down.
The ending was a little abrupt and I had to read it twice to make sure I understood what happened, but otherwise it was a very satisfying read.
Nick Stamkos
May 05, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: music, rock-and-roll
I kinda think of this book as a women's fiction version of Nick Hornby's High Fidelity. It's got many pop musical references throughout and those wonderful uses of song titles and lyrics to help provide support for people in need of emotional support. Good premise to this novel.
Sarah
Nov 20, 2017 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This is maybe a 2.5 for me? It was a pretty quick, easy read for me, but just lacked something. And I really didn't like the ending. Oh well, can't like 'em all.
Char
Feb 24, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Great story. I was drawn into this and almost couldn't put it down. I enjoyed the unique characters as well as how the story unfolded up until the very end.
Deb Carlson
Feb 26, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A good read, I read in one day after getting home from library. It is engaging and deals well with mental health and how a family dynamic can be affected when children are very young. I have found that large print is my friend.
Eeiko
Jan 19, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The story of the song reader is a cleverly written tale about love, home, and family. It is narrated by not the song reader herself, but her sister, Leeann Norris. Through Leeann’s eyes the audience gets to experience what it is like for Leeann to live and grow up in a country town, and more importantly, what song reading really is and how it affects her family and those in the town.

The song reader, Mary Beth, is the most interesting character. She is described by all as beautiful, intelligen
...more
Shannon
Jun 12, 2013 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Amanda
The most positive thing I can say about this novel is that it taught me how to be okay with NOT finishing every novel I start. It's been a few years since I picked up "The Song Reader", and all I can remember about what drew me to it is that it seemed like a breezy, afternoon escape-esque read (much like Meg Cabot's work) and I happened to want one at the time.

What struck me most about the book was just how much Mary Beth should have been named Mary Sue (a subconscious choice on Lisa Tucker's p
...more
Gayle
Jul 11, 2011 rated it really liked it
Leeann's dad left when she was nine years old. Nobody in the family knows where he is.
When she is a teen, her mother dies in an automobile accident and Leeann is left in the care of her older sister Mary Beth
Mary Beth works as a waitress in a diner, has a toddler that someone 'gave' her, and runs a little business that she calls song-reading. She believes the songs people keep hearing can lead to the cause of whatever problem they may be having, and she can help them solve the problem.

She keeps
...more
Jamie Insixiengmay
Nov 14, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: english
The song reader is about a teen named Leeann who is living with her sister,Mary Beth,their mom died and their father was no where to be found. Mary Beth is a song reader,a person who figure out peoples problems by going through the lyrics of the songs they can't stop listening to,one of her customers gave Mary Beth this baby boy named Tommy because no one wanted him. Mary Beth ended up dating one of her customers, Ben he took really good care of them. Leeann was searching for her dad and would n ...more
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Question (possible spolier) 1 1 Sep 06, 2013 02:21AM  
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117 followers
Lisa Tucker is the author of six novels: The Winters in Bloom, coming this September; The Song Reader, Shout Down the Moon, Once Upon a Day, The Cure for Modern Life, and The Promised World.

Her books have been published in twelve countries and selected for Borders Original Voices, Book of the Month Club, the Literary Guild, Doubleday Book Club, People magazine Critic’s Choice, Redbook Book Club, A
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