Taylor Swift looked at her Folklore 2020 dominance and said, NOPE, not done yet! And so, completely out of the blue, she dropped a second, sister album, evermore. Full of lush forest cottagcore storytelling and characters that definitely have backstories, we HAD to continue the tradition and get an Ultimate Book Track Match article. We had help this time, with Swiftie experts and author super couple Austin Siegemund-Broka and Emily Wibberley contributing to bring you the VERY best book match.
Book Match: The Damned by Renée Ahdieh
While Celine and Bastien are the leading star-crossed lovers in The Beautiful and The Damned, another could be – SHOULD BE RENÉE – couple, dance around each other, and if you know Pippa and Arjun then elements of Willow, the first track totally work. “The more you say, the less I know.” To say that Arjun knows just a bit more than Pippa is massive, massive understatement, but don’t let that follow you about her. Still, despite her hopes for a secure future, secretly we all know, she wants him to “take my hand, wreck my plans” and the ending of The Damned, and what’s next to come – this lyric HITS DIFFERENTLY “Show me the places where the others gave you scars”
Track: Champagne Problems
Book Match: If I’m Being Honest, Austin Siegemund-Broka & Emily Wibberley
No contemporary songwriter sets a scene like Taylor. Champagne Problems reminded us of If I’m Being Honest’s Cameron, so many of whose problems are champagne in cheap glasses, and the gorgeous opening lines swept us to one of our favorite shrew’s most painful moments, with Brendan at their winter formal when everything goes wrong: “I dropped your hand while dancing, left you out there standing, crestfallen on the landing… champagne problems. Your mom’s ring in your pocket, my picture in your locket, your heart was glass; I dropped it… champagne problems.”
Track: Gold Rush
Book Match: Prince Charming by Rachel Hawkins
“Everybody wants you. Everybody wonders what it would be like to love you.” Sounds like…royalty. Sounds like the questions running through everyone’s heads where princes are concerned—everyone’s heads except Daisy Winters. Gold Rush perfectly captures the skepticism of Prince Charming’s utterly charming narrator when faced with joining the literal English royal family. She ends up surrounded by dashing British gentlemen, and all she can think is “I don’t like anticipating my face in a red flush.”
Track: ‘Tis the Damn Season
Book Match: The Best Laid Plans by Cameron Lund
If there was a sequel to The Best Laid Plans and we got to see what Keely and Andrew were up to know, this feels like the song. “Now I’m missing your smile, hear me out, We could just ride around, And the road not taken looks real good now”. While they might have both gone of to college and who knows how it went, returning home and reuniting, the same home town feel and their relationship just continuing on, can totally see it.
Track: Tolerate It
Book Match: Chemical Hearts by Krystal Sutherland
This couple are definitely drawn to each other and it’s not that Grace doesn’t love Henry, he’s just not everything she needs and she’s still too lost in the past. Really, Henry went off and “made you my temple, my mural, my sky.” and sadly Grace already belonged to someone else – sort of. In the end Henry knows he deserves better, bittersweet as that maybe but “I know my love should be celebrated, but you tolerate it.” Go and heal Henry and Grace – just not together.
Track: No Body, No Crime
Book Match: The Small Crimes of Tiffany Templeton by Richard Fifield
Both the song AND the artists are completely aligned for Tiffany’s journey. Because bringing together Taylor and HAIM is instant girl power points and while Tiffany would never call them that, we’re giving them to her. But the song itself, really speaks to her journey, returning to a small town where secrets are everywhere and with Tiffany’s erratic family life, she knows “I’ve cleaned enough houses, To know how to cover up a scene.” And just who did it and who can prove it…well Tiffany, Taylor and HAIM know.
Book Match: They Wish They Were Us by Jessica Goodman
Jill Newman had the life she always wanted and sure, her best friend’s murder changed things but it’s only two years and she is starting asking questions. “And in the disbelief, I can’t face reinvention, I haven’t met the new me yet”. But as Jill starts to dig, it’s time to ask tough questions and “I can’t see facts through all of my fury, you haven’t met the new me yet”. Yep, Happiness is the name of the song but both Jill and Taylor are looking for answers and everyone is going to be “Haunted by the look in my eyes.”
Book Match: Super Fake Love Song by David Yoon
Go with us on this one –it’s a leap but it works, we promise! Yes, Sunny ISN’T secretly named Dorothea but, they’re both pretending to have a life they think they want, when “back home” their friends, who know their truth are hoping they’ll return. “And damn, Dorothea, they all wanna be ya, But are you still the same soul I met under the bleachers?” Will Sunny’s be true to himself, the same soul he once was or is this new super fake Sunny Dae, the new Dorothea.
Track: Coney Island
Book Match: Warcross by Marie Lu
Hideo Tanaka never probably meant to feel that way about Emika Chen but then she came into his life for just one thing and changed EVERYTHING. “What’s a lifetime of achievement, if I pushed you to the edge?” Because Hideo had lifetime goal and his drive, his determination to achieve it may push Emika beyond her limits in Warcross. And if this lyric isn’t the last few chapters of Warcross’s epic cliffhanger, “Lost again with no surprises, disappointments, close your eyes.” – then damn, you need to reread it to feel that MOMENT.
Book Match: Darius the Great Deserves Better
“I can’t—my pain fits in the palm of your freezing hands. Taking mine but it’s been promised to another. I can’t stop you putting roots in my dream land.” When Darius—yes, Darius the Great—returns home in Darius the Great Deserves Better, he’s left wondering whether he wants everything he thought he wanted, questions only complicated by noticing someone new. It’s exactly the feeling of being pulled in impossible directions Taylor has albums worth of experience rendering, just like she does on “Ivy.” What Darius DESERVES is a T-Swift track to share the struggle.
Track: Cowboy Like Me
Book Match: Trouble is a Friend of Mine by Stephanie Tromly
“You’re a bandit like me. Hustling for the good life.” Philip Digby is that you??!! If you haven’t read the crime caper, scheme-tastic Trouble Is Friend of Mine, with Zoe and Digby at the banter center, then FIX THAT NOW! Because while Digby isn’t a cowboy – sorry – and Zoe is a little reluctant at first to join his antics, by the third book in the trilogy, we all know that “I’ve had some tricks up my sleeve, takes one to know one.” is about BOTH of them.
Track: Long Story Short
Book Match: What’s Not To Love by Austin Siegemund-Broka and Emily Wibberley
Is enemies to lovers ever not darkly delightful? It’s unsurprisingly fantastic under Taylor’s pen, with Long Story Short yielding the record’s sharpest, snappiest lines “a knife cuts both ways, if the shoe fits walk in it till your high heels break”, which is exactly the sorts of rumination on fiercely competitive Alison’s mind in What’s Not To Love. Of course, every nemesis has her match, and Alison has no idea how quickly she’ll go from “I tried to pick my battles till the battle picked me; misery, like the war of words I shouted in my sleep” to “when I dropped my sword, I threw it in the bushes and knocked on your door.”
Book Match: Watch Over Me by Nina LaCour
Sometime these just write themselves! “If I didn’t know better, I think you were talking to me now.” “What died didn’t stay dead.” This is Mila’s STORY!!!! A softly enchanting story, of ghosts from the past, voices that spark memories in the present, all with the haunting tone that both Taylor and Nina LaCour can bring. That autumn chill…it’s what this song and book were built from.
Book Match: Blood Promise, Vampire Academy Bk 4 by Richelle Mead
A letter! From a long lost lover, who it’s acknowledged that “it wasn’t right, the way it all went down.” EvilDimtri definitely knew how to send a bombshell of a letter and while Rose was TRYING to be pretend “I’m doing better”, we ALL knew “it cut deep to know ya, right to the bone.” And sure Rose, you tell yourself, this is Closure, but readers of Vampire Academy would say otherwise, and so would Taylor Swift.
Book Match: A Sky Beyond the Storm by Sabaa Tahir
A Reaper at the Gates was our track match for Exile, from Taylor and Bon Iver and so it makes perfect sense that they’d claim their second song as well with the next book in the An Ember in the Ashes series. This is a non-spoiler match but the ENTIRE second bridge duet is basically Elias & Laia
“And when I was shipwrecked/Can’t think of all the cost;
I thought of you/And the things that will be lost.”
Someone sedate us because this is just too hits the mark with brutal accuracy painful!
Don’t forget to check out the Folklore Book Track Match and then go further back and check out LOVER Book Track Match