Readers first met Finnish Lumikki Andersson in the novel, As Red as Blood, when a bag of blood-soaked money led her on a dangerous mission. Now Lumikki is on vacation in Prague, pleased with her cherished solitude, the gorgeous view before her, and the sound of Shirley Manson’s voice as she sings about dark skies and rain. Then a strange girl appears, the same strange girl that Lumikki has seen at several other tourist locations in Prague. Much to Lumikki’s annoyance, the girl approaches. Everything changes when she speaks, however, telling Lumikki: “I think you’re my sister.”
The Shirley Manson song is “Only Happy When It Rains,” recorded in the mid-nineties by Manson and her band, Garbage. The song came together as the band sat around playing acoustic guitars, building on the lyric, “I’m only happy when it rains.” In a 1995 interview with Addicted to Noise (an early online music magazine,) guitarist Steve Marker explained:
It’s really just us poking fun of ourselves… We’re poking fun at the alternatrock angst, wearing your heart on your sleeve thing and at ourselves for writing such dark songs.
The video emphasizes the conscious mimicry of strange and dark themes so prevalent in alternative rock, combined with Garbage’s sly sense of fun.
Diane Colson, currently reading Still Waters by Ash Parsons.
You know the saying, “April showers bring may flowers!” As we experience some changing weather this month, let’s take a look at some teen novels that center on extreme weather to drive their plots.
Torn Away by Jennifer Brown (2015 Quick Picks for Reluctant Readers)
Hurricane Song by Paul Volponi (2010 Popular Paperbacks for Young Adults)
Empty by Suzanne Weyn
After the Snow by S.D. Crockett (2013 Morris Award Finalist)
Black Ice by Becca Fitzpatrick
Frozen by Melissa De La Cruz and Michael Johnston
Drought by Pam Bachorz
Not a Drop to Drink by Mindy McGinnis
The Water Wars by Cameron Stracher
The Droughtlanders by Carrie Mac
The Ward by Jordana Frankel
Three Rivers Rising by Jame Richards (2011 Best Fiction for Young Adults)
X Isle by Steve Augarde
Exodus by Julie Bertagna (2010 Popular Paperbacks for Young Adults)
-Colleen Seisser, currently reading Graduation Day by Joelle Charbonneau