Yes, I am pushing my literary Swiftie agenda. And what about it?
I consider Taylor Swift and reading my only two personality traits...and I think this is an obsession that doesn’t hurt anyone. In lieu of Miss Swift’s impeccable ability to string lyrics together and the popularization of BookTok, I have decided to combine books and TS anthems for the perfect reading experience. I’ve strategically chosen four contemporary novels and four classic novels, paired alongside their musical counterparts. Buckle up, because this Swiftie is about to take you on a literary journey, complete with the optimal soundtrack.
Beach Read by Emily Henry - “You Belong With Me (Taylor’s Version)”
Emily Henry is an unabashed Swiftie (as she should be), and Taylor’s influence on her work is clearly evident, in this book especially. Augustus and January, the two main characters, are neighbors. Each of their respective houses has a window that looks directly into the others’ house. Shortly after they meet, they begin communicating by writing notes and holding them up to the window for the other to see — very You-Belong-With-Me-esque. If you want to feel pure glee, pick up this book.
Daisy Jones and the Six by Taylor Jenkins Reid - “illicit affairs”
Daisy Jones, my beautiful pop princess! I, too, know of the angst that comes with unrequited love. Reading about her and Billy, her bandmate and the object of her affection, broke my heart. This song is perfect for this novel because it perfectly encapsulates the indignance that Daisy feels when Billy strings her along even though he is married to someone else. Cue the waterworks.
People We Meet on Vacation by Emily Henry - “invisible string”
Poppy and Alex are the embodiment of this song! No matter how different their personalities are, there’s something that just keeps them coming back to each other. If you’re a fan of the friends-to-lovers trope and you haven’t read this book, run — don’t walk — to your nearest bookstore. You’ll thank me.
Red, White, & Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston - “London Boy”
This book is the gay romance of my dreams. Picture this: a secret international relationship, complete with political scandal, and an enemies-to-lovers story that will have you grinning from ear to ear. All this talk is making me want to re-read this book for the fourth time. Taylor, our protagonist, Alex, and I have something in common: none of us can resist a London boy. My love for British accents has been validated three times over. I dare you to read this book and not fall in love with Prince Henry...good luck.
The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald - “happiness”
“The green light of forgiveness”
“I hope she’ll be a beautiful fool”
I mean, come on! I have been known to nerd out over a good literary allusion. Even if you’ve already read The Great Gatsby for school, reading it while listening to “happiness” is a full-body experience. It’s heartbreaking in the best way.
Pride & Prejudice by Jane Austen - “gold rush”
Elizabeth Bennet and Mr. Darcy really have me like: “Hey, God! When?” Seriously, though. When is a man going to tell me that I’ve bewitched him, body and soul? I’m waiting. In “gold rush,” when Taylor sings, “Anyone would die to feel your touch,” I simply cannot help but think of Mr. Darcy’s hand flex. He was pining so hard for Elizabeth! I can’t take it! Jane Austen, I adore you.
Little Women by Louisa May Alcott - “marjorie”
Do not combine Little Women and “marjorie” if you do not want to be in your feelings. You’ve been warned. However, if you’re like me, and you enjoy feeling all the things, I dare say this book-song combination is the ideal duology for a good cry. Beth, the youngest March sister, is Marjorie, through and through.
The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath - “mad woman”
The Bell Jar plus “mad woman” is the recipe for a feminist existential crisis. The discourse on “madness” in both of these works will have you evaluating your views on life. The references to bleak hospitals, anger, and witches in “mad woman” make the prime background music for the Sylvia Plath experience.
My hyperfixation on literature and Taylor Swift has reared its ugly head once again, but this time I hope it has persuaded you to read, or even think about, some great books. Happy listening/reading!
Daniella Conde is an Online Writer at Rowdy Magazine. When she's not lost in productivity while sipping on an overpriced caffeinated beverage at a coffeeshop, you can find her attending way too many shows on Harry Styles' Love on Tour, obsessing over Taylor Swift Easter eggs or finding any possible way to flee Gainesville for the weekend.