Member Reviews

gorgeous coming of age book which i was very excited to read, and i would recommend so much. thanks for the arc 4.5

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Fairly predictable rom com but it was still a good read that I enjoyed it. It was also a quick read.

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I liked this! Though, I do wish there was more to it.

The parallels between Darren and Decklee with their narratives coinciding each other was done really well! I do wish the Decklee chapters were longer. They were really short, and I felt like her character, her cruel, fame-hungry side, and her relationship with Mickenlee was fleshed out a bit more. We've just given brief snippets in her short-paged chapters. This book is barely 300 pages; this book would've benefitted greatly if Decklee's chapters were a bit longer.

But at least Darren and Kendall were cute. I kinda found the "I-only-know-him-because-we-grew-up-in-a-small-town" setup was kinda forced and weird, but it got less awkward once they got on the road and got to connect more.

Additionally, I guessed the twist very early on. It wasn't that hard, especially when two separate people are talked about one after the other (You'll understand when you read). But it didn't hinder my enjoyment.

Overall, this was a good read. Not the best, but certainly better than some I've read so far this year.

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The cover gave me Dolly Parton & Taylor swift vibes but i loved this book so much ! I definitely want a physical copy when it comes out

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bittersweet. i don't know how decklee's point of view really impacted the story, but it was cool to have anyway. i enjoyed darren's point of view and the theme of self identity. i also realized how much i love road trip romances!

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I can't even begin to bring to words my love for this book. The complete connection I felt to this story that really epitomizes loving people and places that can't and wont love you back I feel is the epitome of the human existence. I could not put this book down. AT. ALL. This is also the second book by Jenna I have read and I love seeing author's writing grow with each book and this book is no different.

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4.5 ⭐️
Listen, as a human who is obsessed with Dolly Parton (it’s a perfectly healthy obsession) and the idea of a road trip scavenger hunt, I was really excited for this book. I’m very happy to report that it lived up to all of my expectations.

This book is told in a dual POV between Darren’s present day scavenger hunt and flashbacks to Decklee’s life/career. I loved this. It really gave us a chance to see what Decklee was like and a little taste of her secrets. Sometimes these multiple POVs that take place in different eras can feel a little jarring but that wasn’t the case here. They seemed to flow seemlessly and I loved that.

I also love the characters, especially Darren and Kendall. They have such different dreams but. I think they really balance each other out. I’ve always been a big city kid that dreamed about life in a small town but I can still understand Darren wanting to just get out of Mayberry before she gets stuck there. She’s also so good at finding the little Easter eggs along the scavenger hunt because that could never be me. It would all go over my head.

The tl;dr is that I loved this but I also would have liked more more drama along the way.

Thank you to NetGalley and Penguin Teen for the gifted eARC.

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This book included so, so many of the things I love -- humor, strong characters who burst off the page, dual timeline AND dual POV, a lil mystery, and a dash of that teenage crush that might be more. Full disclosure, I knew Jenna in college, but there were at least five times when I squealed Jenna while reading this because it felt like her.

Darren felt very relatable for me, but I also resonated with the inner struggle of Decklee at several points. She was battling between two very large portions of her identity, and that is a hallmark in the lives of queer people (though this is obviously heightened bc we are not all superstars).

Read this if you like: Daisy Jones and the Six, National Treasure, Taylor Swift, treasure/scavenger hunts, Dolly Parton, listening to music with the windows rolled down.

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A massive thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for an e-ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review!! I really enjoyed this book; definitely something I will tell my friends about!

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𝘿𝙪𝙢𝙥𝙡𝙞𝙣' 𝙢𝙚𝙚𝙩𝙨 𝘿𝙖𝙞𝙨𝙮 𝙅𝙤𝙣𝙚𝙨 & 𝙩𝙝𝙚 𝙎𝙞𝙭 𝙞𝙣 𝙩𝙝𝙞𝙨 𝙨𝙥𝙡𝙞𝙩-𝙋𝙊𝙑 𝙡𝙤𝙫𝙚 𝙨𝙤𝙣𝙜 𝙩𝙤 𝙘𝙤𝙪𝙣𝙩𝙧𝙮 𝙞𝙙𝙤𝙡𝙨, 𝙧𝙤𝙢𝙖𝙣𝙩𝙞𝙘 𝙧𝙤𝙖𝙙 𝙩𝙧𝙞𝙥𝙨, 𝙖𝙣𝙙 𝙦𝙪𝙚𝙚𝙧 𝙡𝙤𝙫𝙚.

📍 Read if you like:
• Queer Romance
• Magical Quests
• Country Music
• Roadtrips

I really enjoyed reading this story, it reminded me so much of some previous books I read in the past. I loved the music and road-trip aspect of this book so much.

Darren and Kendall were both super enjoyable characters, I enjoyed the adventure they took to solve the missing items from Decklee’s capsule. I also thought the romance between the two was fun, and the small town they both reside in.

It was interesting as the story was told from two different perspectives. We have Darren as she takes this road trip to solve this “mystery”, and we have Decklee, a well-known country music star who recently passed away.

There were so many emotions and personal growth throughout the book. I loved the way this author handled certain themes and represented a queer romance.

Personally, I wasn’t the biggest fan of the ending. It wasn’t terrible by any means, it just wasn’t my ideal ending.

The story as a whole was so fascinating and enjoyable. I absolutely loved the theme of music and the road trip these characters take. The topics in this book were also perfectly addressed! Such a fun and quick read!

Thank you so much NetGalley and Penguin Teen for the review copy in exchange for my honest review!

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Thank you for the opportunity to read Every Time You Hear That Song as an e-arc, it was one of my top ya new release for the year and it didn't disappoint. It was swooney, had strong characters and the pacing was really fast.

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I really wanted to love this book! Unfortunately Decklee’s storyline is far more interesting than Darren’s and I found myself skimming through most of the present chapters. Darren’s character felt very flat while I would’ve gladly read an entire book from either Decklee or Mickenlee’s POV. The warm fuzzy fandom feelings push it up for a 3 star for me, but I do have two major issues:

1) There is a passage of this book that is taken almost word for word from the movie Ladybird. I would’ve loved for the author to put their own spin on the same idea.

2) The names took me completely out of the book. I understand the use of stage names, but “Decklee” and “Mickenlee” are so distracting and almost stopped me from reading this book at all. They feel extremely out of place the entire time and genuinely unbelievable for the setting.

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Oh my goodness, this hit me in all of the feels! The music, the friendship, the love stories, the forgotten memories, and the broken hearts. The ache of being a young queer person in a place that you aren’t understood or accepted. Unrequited love. This story was so much and more! I loved every moment of it, it was just the right blend of bittersweet. This middle aged bisexual woman actually wept for the young girl trying to find herself and grasp her bisexuality. I would absolutely love to see more from this author, it hit all of the write notes!

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I'm grateful to NetGalley and Penguin Group for providing me with an eARC of this book. From the moment I started reading three nights ago, I found myself utterly captivated. The book delivers an exhilarating blend of adventure, romance, and music industry intrigue, hitting all the right notes for someone with my particular interests.

As a music journalist, the unfolding of Decklee's story offered a unique perspective on the creative process, adding an extra layer of fascination. Deciphering the inspiration behind a song becomes an engaging journey when connected to the artist's personal experiences.

Initially, I anticipated a primarily YA narrative with high school-level language, but as the story progressed, I discovered a rich exploration of 70s and 80s music history. The author skillfully balanced the young adult themes with a road trip adventure, avoiding excessive explicitness in the adult content, making it suitable for readers over 18.

"Every Time You Hear That Song" pleasantly surprised me with its depth, evolving into a heartwarming found-family tale and a coming-of-age story with authentic queer representation. I'm confident that I would happily revisit this book, as it seamlessly weaves together elements of feel-good storytelling and resonates with the spirit of found family.

Regardless of your affinity for country music, this novel has the potential to evoke fond memories of your favorite YA books. The book is a harmonious symphony of emotions, leaving readers with a sense of warmth and a melody that lingers.

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Anything and everything Jenna Voris writes is a damn hit. Every Time You Hear That Song IS exactly what I needed as a queer southern boy, and I cannot wait for teens to have something like this to help them through the day-to-day life. The humor is incredible, the heart-wrenching storytelling is (of course, it’s a Voris special!) there… you just have to read it to experience the magic.

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<i> I received a free ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review. </i>

i wanted to like this book so bad!! i sprinted to the arc when i saw this being promoted on tiktok by the author as a mystery surrounding a great female country star and the secret love of her life.

it really gave the 7 husbands of evelyn hugo, another book that made it big on booktok and that i simply could not bear to slog through. right down to the alternating pov and the unlikable-yet-charming world famous closeted bisexual who’ll do anything to achieve the fame she wants.

it was fast paced, and the dynamics between the characters were interesting. i really appreciated the way it explored the tension between staying in a small town and knowing that if you don’t get out it will crush you where you stand.

but girlies… i set it down two months ago and keep willing myself to pick it up, but 2024 is the year of knowing there are millions of books out there that could be treating me better.

so give it a try! maybe it’ll be for you!

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I immediately found the premise interesting, I loved Darren and Decklee, and Kendall was simply adorable. But the pacing of this story was sadly too slow for me. I hate it because with a little more speed in the pacing, I might have loved this one! Now it ended up as just an okay read.

Please check out other reviews if you’re interested in reading Every Time You Hear That Song!

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This book was definitely an interesting read, kinda felt like a YA mixed version of The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo & Daisy Jones and the Sixth.
This book is told, in passed and present perspectives. In the past following famous country singer Decklee Cassel and in the present we’re following one of her super fans Darren Purchase. Similar to the famous Decklee, Darren is desperate to leave her small town and explore the real world. Darren receives this opportunity when a nationally televised funeral is held for Decklee and announced is the unveiling of a time capsule- essentially a scavenger hunt that Decklee organized before her passing which once it is found, will reveal her last and final album.
Darren, being a young journalist, knows there’s a story there, and is determined to uncovered it and win the grand prize money of $3 million. So she plans a spontaneous road trip with her annoying coworker Kendall and they are off to find the time capsule filled with the music that brought Darren and her mother so much joy throughout her childhood.
I thought this book was good. There was a lot of parts that I enjoyed! However, in general, I just found it kind of slow. Honestly, my favorite part was the chapters following Decklee. Flashing back to 1963 and watching how her fame arose, seeing all the behind-the-scenes and the drama- it just really intrigued me and I found myself wanting to read more about that and less about Darren lol
Overall I thought this was a cute read, but definitely on the younger end of YA in my opinion. I enjoyed it and I would probably recommend it to a younger audience, but I can’t see myself rereading it ever.

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I loved this story!! Brought literal tears to my eyes. This story has an alternating POV. Darren Purchase is growing up in the same small town as Decklee Cassel did before she left at 16 to chase her stardom. Her mom and her have used Decklee's music their whole lives to get through everything. When Decklee passes away, Darren waits for a supposed scavenger hunt that will send her on a journey in more ways than one. This book was beautifully written. I had literal tears in my eyes reading the end of this amazing book.

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This book was so good that I read it in one sitting. I was dying to know what was going to happen next, because both Darren and Decklee were such complex characters and I love some good drama, and hoo boy did this book have drama in the best way. It's probably not the sort of drama you're thinking though, because despite focusing on a celebrity, I think Voris did a pretty good job of subverting the expectations I had about Decklee and her personality. Both main characters had really strong and unusual personalities in the way that neither of them were particularly concerned about being "likeable" to their close friends, and that was really refreshing to read. Don't get me wrong, I wouldn't want to deal with that behavior, but it was nice to have another form of flaws and growth for characters to work around. The queer rep tackled in this was handled really well too, I was laughing out loud over Ronald Reagan's appearance too.

My only complaint is that I felt like Kendall's race and struggles to fit into Mayberry seemed to be a bit glossed over in a way that he could've been written as white and it wouldn't have made a difference. Like, I'm not asking for this to turn into a race thing or wanting him to be hate-crimed or something, but a large part of the novel was about examining the complexity of living a close-minded small town, loving the community and yet still feeling trapped. Exploring all of that from a white queer perspective while ignoring the struggles a Black teen would have to deal with felt wrong to me. I don't think it was a huge issue, but it was definitely something worth noting.

Overall, Every Time You Hear That Song is a great contemporary YA, and one I'm really glad I picked it up. I'm definitely willing to try Varis' other work too, and look forward to what she writes in the future!

Also, this book is SO swiftie coded, so I highly recommend it if you're a fan of Taylor's

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