Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Here Comes The Sun: Beach Stories to Brighten Your Day, A Review of Sola Musica

Sola MusicaSola Musica by Mina V. Esguerra
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Disclosure: I am friends with the authors.

I pre-ordered Sola Musica last August but only got the chance to read it recently. I really loved it. It's set in a fictional beach music festival in Anilao, Batangas. Each author contributes a story to the setting. The first story is Spectators by Chinggay Labrador, the second is Georgia Lost and Found by Mina V. Esguerra, followed by A Captured Dream by Ines Bautista-Yao, and the last story is Break by Marla Miniano. But feel free to read in any order, depending on what strikes your fancy.

Four very different perspectives but all so inspiring. I loved how little details from one story would randomly show up in another story.  Also, don't miss the playlists in the appendix of the book. They replace the regular "about the author" and give a new perspective to each author. Each story features songs and the bands, adding texture to your reading experience.  With Spectators I listened to Coldplay right when the band was mentioned in the story (Song: Amsterdam). It's well-researched. I loved all the little details about bands setting up! Mina's average-Georgia has a surprise waiting for her in the story. It's so relatable (ex. Awkward silence in a car with a guy that you’re not sure likes you back. Familiar situation. At least, for me). Plus there's this giant balloon. Memorable metaphor. Watch for it. Ines' A Captured Dream is all about girl power, but with a twist! What can I say? It's about literally taking one's power back. Now, who wouldn't want that? Marla's Break was so charming. I loved the unconventional-modern-family of Nat. Also, it's full of insights on teenage angst and finding out who you really are.

So, all in all, it was a gift of stories and music to me. And since we're on the topic of music, if I could pick a song to describe the book, it would be "Here Comes The Sun," the Nina Simone cover.

All in all, I treasured my reading time with this book of short stories. It made me want to look for tickets to the festival. Haha!

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