Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Blog Tour: Sound (Salvage #2) by Alexandra Duncan

Sound (Salvage #2)
by Alexandra Duncan
Publisher: Greenwillow Books
Release Date: September 22nd 2015
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SOUND is the stand-alone companion to Alexandra Duncan’s acclaimed novel Salvage, a debut that internationally bestselling author Stephanie Perkins called “kick-ass, brilliant, feminist science fiction.” For fans of Beth Revis, Firefly, and Battlestar Galactica.

As a child, Ava’s adopted sister Miyole watched her mother take to the stars, piloting her own ship from Earth to space making deliveries. Now a teen herself, Miyole is finally living her dream as a research assistant on her very first space voyage. If she plays her cards right, she could even be given permission to conduct her own research and experiments in her own habitat lab on the flight home. But when her ship saves a rover that has been viciously attacked by looters and kidnappers, Miyole—along with a rescued rover girl named Cassia—embarks on a mission to rescue Cassia’s abducted brother, and that changes the course of Miyole’s life forever.

by Alexandra Duncan

I tend to listen to music when I’m editing, rather than when I’m writing, especially if it’s music with lyrics. I like lyrics, and I end up listening really hard to figure out what they are, rather than writing my own words. Sometimes, though, I’ll have Spotify or Pandora on, or I’ll be listening to the radio in the car, and a song will perfectly resonate with the book I’m writing. When that happens, I make a note of it so that I can listen to it obsessively later. That is what you’ll see below - songs I’ve listened to over and over again while editing, and that I hope you’ll like as much as I do. Here is a link to the playlist on Spotify, as well. 

Do you ever run across one of those songs that’s so beautiful, it makes you cry? This was one of those for me. It’s all about the first blush of falling in love, which is what is happening with Miyole and Cassia in Sound. The music video for this song, particularly the part where the new lovers inch their hands toward each other in the back seat of the taxi, inspired a lot of the sweetness and hesitancy at the beginning of Miyole and Cassia’s relationship.

I love Janelle Monáe’s trilogy of Android albums. I play them on repeat all the time in my car. Most of her songs have a very strong narrative element already attached to them, but “Neon Gumbo” doesn’t. Instead, it has this evocative, pulsing, electronic sound that makes me think of radio waves traveling across space.

This playlist needs a few harder rock songs, and this one perfectly captures Miyole’s anger and grief about her mother’s death. Also, it is criminal that Suffrajett doesn’t have more of a following, so now you know about them.

Sometimes you fall for a song because of a single line. The line in this song, “I hope that you see right through my walls,” was one of those for me. Miyole has a lot of walls up around her. She’s been hurt before and is afraid to get attached to people, but through the course of the book, she reaches out, forms friendships, and falls in love.

There are a few quiet moments in Sound, and I feel like this song fits those times. I was driving home from work, when it came on the radio, and I fell in love with it. The band is French Canadian, and while the people of Miyole’s native Haiti speak a separate Haitian creole, there is a heavy French influence on the language. That kind of tangential connection can still be really inspiring when you’re writing or editing.

I wanted to include a creepy, solitary song on this list that would bring up the feeling of the abandoned space station Miyole and her friends come across in the middle of their journey. Black Prairie has creepy and solitary down.

The slow, driving beat running underneath this song, along with the simple, eerie tinkling make me think of what space travel would be like, especially in an old ship that might fall apart at any moment - beautiful, but unnerving.

I had to put Janelle Monáe on here twice. Her songs have so many layers of meaning. In Sound, there are recurring themes about holding onto hope and resilience in the face of insurmountable odds and an uncaring world. “Cold War” resonates with those themes. 

What would a soundtrack be without an epic, tragic love song?

And now for a quiet coda about devotion. No spoilers!

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Alexandra Duncan is a writer and librarian. Her first novel, Salvage, was published April 1, 2014, by Greenwillow Books. Her short fiction has appeared in several Year's Best Science Fiction & Fantasy anthologies and The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction. She loves anything that gets her hands dirty – pie-baking, leatherworking, gardening, drawing, and rolling sushi. She lives with her husband and two monstrous, furry cats in the mountains of Western North Carolina. 

You can visit her online at

1 winner will receive a signed hardback of SOUND, a signed paperback of SALVAGE, and thiselectronic butterfly in a jar (US Only)

1 comment:

  1. I just love your choices in music and I agree She keeps me warm makes me cry too! Your book sounds fabulous :)