After reading the synopsis for In The Lyrics, I was dying to read it. It sounded like a super cute story with characters that I could really see myself liking—and it involved music. I’m a bit obsessed with books that incorporate music/musicians into the storyline. So I had high hopes for this one.
Colby is an aspiring musician who has had a rough time in life. Tragedy has left his life in ruins. He has an alcoholic for a father, and his family is struggling to hold onto their farm and keep their heads above water. Because of all of this, and a heartfelt promise to his younger brother, Colby is determined to get away and make something for himself—make a better life for himself and for his mother. He’s a character that I really enjoyed getting to know. He’s charismatic, and has a “down-home” country charm that makes him quite loveable. After moving away from home to chase his dream, he meets Hensley—his roommates best friend, and a girl who captures his heart from the very start.
Hensley, also a musician at heart, is living her life day by day, struggling to get by. She’s a bit jaded, having to deal with her father’s illness, and determined to make something of herself. The only bright spots in her life seem to be Dusty, her best friend, and her family. She’s too busy trying to chase her dreams and prove herself, she doesn’t have time for love and, frankly, doesn’t want it. She’s taken aback when she feels such an unexplainable and intense connection to Colby right from the start. She holds no punches when trying to push him as far away as she can get him, and he’s determined to crack her tough shell.
There were a few things that bugged me about this book. Certain actions the characters took didn’t ring true for me sometimes, given their background and previous behavior. It’s difficult to get into specifics without spoiling parts of the story, so I won’t. Another issue I had, although it was remedied, was the music. The fact that I expected music to be incorporated so thoroughly in this book, was something that really drew me to reading it. However, for quite a bit of the book, this takes a backburner to the rest of the story—or at least it seemed that way. This would normally be fine, but I think I was expecting a bit more. I just wasn’t feeling the passion that these characters were supposed to have for the craft, for music, and the determination to make something of themselves. For example, they show up at a bar for a gig and don’t even have a name for their group. The reason given for this was that they haven’t thought of one because they just “play for fun.” That, to me, didn’t seem consistent with individuals that have a drive and passion to make it big. As I said, eventually this was no longer an issue, and this aspect of the story was brought to the forefront as I had originally hoped.
Other than those two major issues, I did really like this story. Family, dreams fulfilled, friendship, a bit of drama and romance all played a huge part in making this a very enjoyable read. Overall, it was a very sweet story with great characters, a quick and fun read for me.
“Do you know the first thing that I noticed about you?”
She shakes her head no.
“It was your confidence. I had just gotten to town and was going to grab a bite to eat and then call Dusty, but I saw this girl sitting on the street corner.”
“I felt like you were staring holes in my head,” she says softly.
“Truthfully, I was. Anyway, once you started to sing…it was like…ya know when your favorite song comes on the radio and you’re jammin’, listening to every word, your heads bobbin’, and you’re just feeling the music, but then your phone rings and you know it’s a call you can’t miss? There’s a split second where you debate on pressing forward to voicemail so you can finish the song, but you’ve been waiting for this call, so you turn down the radio knowing you’ll miss your favorite part just to answer it. It was like you were my favorite song, and I was forwarding my calls to voicemail. In that moment, I didn’t care who was standing around me. All I was worried about was tuning in to you, listening to your voice.”
“I love you.” Those three simple words are spoken, and much to my amazement it’s Hensley that says them first.
Clutching her face hard in my hands, I kiss her. I kiss her for being so darn dumb and insecure, for acting like a jealous girl, and more importantly, for loving me through it all.
Nacole Stayton is twenty-something years young and currently resides in the Bluegrass State. She spends her days working at a local hospital in the billing department and nights writing vigorously on her current novel. She has a passion for helping others and wears her University of Kentucky gear proudly. While her husband loves all things outdoors, Nacole enjoys the finer things in life, like getting pedicures while reading on her Kindle Fire. She is passionate about her faith, family, and The Bachelor.
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