Tis the season for long car rides, which means tis the season for MUSICALS! There’s nothing better than cruising down the highway with a musical blaring from the radio! Today, I’ve paired some of my favorites with some of my favorite YA books!
Love Wicked? Try Ace of Shades by Amanda Foody
I’m incredibly lucky to have seen Wicked three times: on Broadway, on the West End and on tour. Each time, it was absolutely stunning! This Wizard of Oz prequel follows Elphaba through a steampunk world as she struggles to fit in as a result of her green skin. Throughout the show, Elphaba struggles to understand and control her unique, powerful magic. Ace of Shades follows protagonist Enne as she searches for her mother in the famed “City of Sin.” It’s like a dark, twisty emerald city, filled with casinos and bad people. Both pieces see the characters taking epic journeys and leaning new things about themselves along the way. Finally, both are full to the brim with magic!
Love Standby? Try The Upside of Falling Down by Rebekah Crane
CW for Standby: Suicidal ideation
There’s no competition: Standby is my favorite musical of all time. This musical opens with four strangers waking up in an airport terminal with no memory of arriving, no memory of where they’re going, and no. way. out. These strangers have to work together to escape, and learn what connects them along the way. Standby has a pop-rock score that’s completely addicting. I’ve paired this musical with Rebekah Crane’s The Upside of Falling Down. When 17-year-old Clementine, the sole survivor of a plane crash, wakes up with no memory of who she is, she has to risk it all to remember herself along the way. Both of these media have swoon-worthy moments and heartwarming characters!
Love Be More Chill? Try Ready Player One by Ernest Cline
Though Be More Chill is based on a great novel by Ned Vizzini, I’ve decided to pair it with Ready Player One. Be More Chill follows “loser” Jeremy Heere as he navigates high school and his unrequited crush on Christine Canigula. When he swallows a supercomputer called a “squip” that will teach him to be cool, CHAOS ensues. This musical is filled with laugh-out-loud humor and 80s pop culture references, which makes it the perfect pairing for Ready Player One! Ready Player one follows Wade Watts, who is something of an outcast himself, as he makes his way through an epic 1980s scavenger hunt to find the ultimate prize: James Halliday’s hidden Easter egg. The movie is good, but the book is better! Both of these make me want to get a pac-man tattoo…
Love The Prom? Try Georgia Peaches and Other Forbidden Fruit by Jaye Robin Brown
The Prom was a broadway fan favorite that closed far, far too soon. This show is about two girls who just want to go to prom together. Unfortunately, their small Indiana town has other ideas. With some help from a famous actor or two, Alyssa and Emma might just find their HEA. Georgia Peaches and Other Forbidden Fruit by Jaye Robin Brown follows teenager Jo. When Jo moves to a small, southern town, she faces coming out all over again. And that’s a little harder when your father’s a priest! This book is a lovely little story of love and acceptance that’s stayed with me!
Which musicals would you like to see paired next?