Twitter Facebook Tumblr Pinterest Instagram

« older | Main Largehearted Boy Page | newer »

December 6, 2012

Book Notes - Stephanie LaCava "An Extraordinary Theory of Objects: A Memoir of an Outsider in Paris"

An Extraordinary Theory of Objects: A Memoir of an Outsider in Paris

In the Book Notes series, authors create and discuss a music playlist that relates in some way to their recently published book.

Previous contributors include Bret Easton Ellis, Kate Christensen, Kevin Brockmeier, George Pelecanos, Dana Spiotta, Amy Bloom, David Peace, Myla Goldberg, Heidi Julavits, Hari Kunzru, and many others.

Stephanie LaCava's An Extraordinary Theory of Objects is a truly original memoir, a coming of age story thoughtfully told through a series of illustrated essays.

Booklist wrote of the book:

"What cleverly fills the honeycomb of LaCava's own story is a compassionate, evocative biography of seemingly aberrant things and a collection of historical anecdotes that most readers would never otherwise learn, let alone find gathered all together in one small (but not diminishing), deliberate, and careful book."

Stream a Spotify playlist of these tunes. If you don't have Spotify yet, sign up for the free service.

In her own words, here is Stephanie LaCava's Book Notes music playlist for her memoir, An Extraordinary Theory of Objects: A Memoir of an Outsider in Paris:

"Is it okay to wear headphones all the time?" I asked. "That way you can have a soundtrack, just like in the movies."

When I was young I remember sitting in the backseat of the car, the window cracked, head pressing against it, with my Discman, imagining I was being filmed. I was obsessed with understanding music as all the boys in my class lived and died by it, especially Nirvana and the Red Hot Chili Peppers. I lived and died by other things, things, but still set to a soundtrack, like the one below:

Growing up in the 90s in France, American music was one of the ways we connected back home. Grunge was the major international export of the time.

"Black Hole Sun" - Soundgarden

The opening of this song is epic. There's this sense of longing that's essential to a teen anthem and I love these lines: "Hang my head/Drown my fear, Till you all just/ Disappear…"

"Hunger Strike" - Temple of the Dog

I love that this song is Chris Cornell and Eddie Vedder together. "I don't mind stealing bread from the mouths of decadence," is such a great refrain. I was also known to gone on hunger strikes of my own from time to time.

"Insane in the Brain" - Cypress Hill

Classic. I never smoked pot (too crazy already) but there's a kind of rebellion in listening to the song alone.

"Loser" - Beck

"I'm a loser baby, so why don't you kill me," was the chorus that everyone would sing and feel a little uncomfortable about.

"You Belong to Me" - Carla Bruni

Nineties supermodel turned songstress and French first lady=genius.

"High and Dry" - Radiohead

Another song about longing, you can never have too many.

"Would?" - Alice in Chains

I have to say, I just kind of love the band's name. I used to wear a silver Alice in Wonderland charm around my neck.

"Learn to Fly" - Foo Fighters

There's a hopefulness to this song. You worry it might be cheesy, but truth is, it's more than a little inspiring.

"All Eyez on Me" - Tupac

Tupac can do no wrong, if you ask me. Yeah, that's "can," in the present tense.

"Sex on Fire" - Kings of Leon

Enough said.

"Plush" - Stone Temple Pilots

"And I feel, so much depends on/The weather/So is it raining in your bedroom?" It was always raining in my bedroom.

"Under the Bridge" -Red Hot Chili Peppers

This song was playing at an infamous canteen "dance" we had on a school trip in France.

"Lithium" - Nirvana


"Ni**as in Paris" - Kanye West

I listened to this with my friends in the car zooming around Paris on a recent trip. It makes me laugh.

"Dawn of the Iconoclast (Remastered)" - Dead Can Dance

Good mood music.

"Scarabee" (Acoustic Version) - Vanessa Paradis

Vanessa Paradis is one of my favorite girls, an unconventional, sexy beauty.

"Today" -Smashing Pumpkins

A hopeful song from a time of darker music. I walked in my wedding to an instrumental version of "Tonight."

"Tomorrow's Song" - Olafur Arnalds

So beautiful.

"Alive" - Pearl Jam

The End.

Stephanie LaCava and An Extraordinary Theory of Objects: A Memoir of an Outsider in Paris links:

the author's website
video trailer for the book
video trailer for the book

Bookreporter review
BookRoom Reviews review
Publishers Weekly review
To Be Shelved review

The Coveteur profile of the author
ELLE interview with the author
Extraordinary Women TV profile of the author
Fashionologie profile of the author
The Last Magazine essay by the author (on curiosity)
Lurve interview with the author
Paris Review essays by the author
Style File Blog profile of the author Arabia interview with the author

also at Largehearted Boy:

Book Notes (2012 - ) (authors create music playlists for their book)
Book Notes (2005 - 2011) (authors create music playlists for their book)
my 11 favorite Book Notes playlist essays

The list of online "best of 2012" book lists
The list of online "best of 2012" music lists

100 Online Sources for Free and Legal Music Downloads
52 Books, 52 Weeks (weekly book reviews)
Antiheroines (interviews with up and coming female comics artists)
Atomic Books Comics Preview (weekly comics highlights)
Daily Downloads (free and legal daily mp3 downloads)
guest book reviews
Largehearted Word (weekly new book highlights)
musician/author interviews
Note Books (musicians discuss literature)
Shorties (daily music, literature, and pop culture links)
Soundtracked (composers and directors discuss their film's soundtracks)
Try It Before You Buy It (mp3s and full album streams from the week's CD releases)
weekly music & DVD release lists

submit to reddit