Blog Tour: Music from Another World by Robin Talley

Crushed on by kelly, on April 3, 2020, in Blog Tour, Feature, New Releases / 3 Comments

Blog Tour: Music from Another World by Robin Talley

Music from Another World by Robin Talley released this week and we are thrilled to be a part of the blog tour. Robin is known for her f/f historical stories and we can’t wait to read this one! For today’s post I am going to share the book information, an excerpt, and a Like That – Try This recommendations!


Blog Tour: Music from Another World by Robin Talley

Music from Another World

by Robin Talley
Published by: Inkyard Press
on March 31, 2020
Genres: Young Adult, Historical Fiction, GLBTQIA+
Pages: 304
IndieBoundBarnes & NobleiTunes
Goodreads

It’s summer 1977 and closeted lesbian Tammy Larson can’t be herself anywhere. Not at her strict Christian high school, not at her conservative Orange County church and certainly not at home, where her ultrareligious aunt relentlessly organizes antigay political campaigns. Tammy’s only outlet is writing secret letters in her diary to gay civil rights activist Harvey Milk…until she’s matched with a real-life pen pal who changes everything.
Sharon Hawkins bonds with Tammy over punk music and carefully shared secrets, and soon their letters become the one place she can be honest. The rest of her life in San Francisco is full of lies. The kind she tells for others—like helping her gay brother hide the truth from their mom—and the kind she tells herself. But as antigay fervor in America reaches a frightening new pitch, Sharon and Tammy must rely on their long-distance friendship to discover their deeply personal truths, what they’ll stand for…and who they’ll rise against.
A master of award-winning queer historical fiction, New York Times bestselling author Robin Talley once again brings to life with heart and vivid detail an emotionally captivating story about the lives of two teen girls living in an age when just being yourself was an incredible act of bravery.



If You Like That – Try This

So, if you didn’t know, Music from Another World is a historical fiction book about two teens who are matched as pen pals in 1977. It explores their reality amidst the gay civil rights movement in and around San Francisco, including writing letters to activist Harvey Milk. So I thought I would do a few categories of If you Like That – Try This. First up of course is music!

Music

Do you like late 70s punk rock like Blondie and Patti Smith?

Well then you should definitely check out Music from Another World – which incorporates music both real and fictional into the book.



Movies

Harvey Milk is very important to this story, to history, and to Tammy & Sharon.

Well clearly if you enjoyed Milk and other historical fiction around the 70s or gay rights movement you will definitely enjoy Music from Another World!


Books

Of course I can’t recommend just one, but I have three seriously amazing books you should read if you haven’t yet, and/or if you are looking for what to read after Music from Another World, all of these following books should be next on your TBR!

Ziggy, Stardust & Me
by James Brandon

This book is a beautiful yet jarring look at some of the struggles young gay men lived through in the 70s and also is full of love and hate. As a reader you experience so much, and it’s important to never forget our history.

goodreadsindiebound

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Like A Love Story
by Abdi Nazemian

This book is set in 1989, a decade later than Music from Another World, but it shares how music can help lead to acceptance of who you are, and bringing you closer to the movement and yourself.

goodreadsindiebound

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Pulp by Robin Talley

I mean is it cheating to recommend a book by the same author? Maybe, but this dual timeline book is an absolute gem and a very poignant look into the history of gay pulp fiction and life in the 50s contrasted with today.

goodreadsindiebound



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Excerpt

Excerpted from Music from Another World by Robin Talley. © 2020 by Robin Talley, used with permission by Inkyard Press.

Tuesday, June 7, 1977

Dear Harvey,

I hope it’s okay for me to call you Harvey. In school, when they taught us to write letters, they said adults should always be addressed as “Mr.” or “Mrs.,” but from what I’ve read in the newspaper, you don’t seem much like the adults I know. I’d feel wrong calling you “Mr. Milk.”

Besides, it’s not as if I’m ever going to send you this letter. I’ve never kept a diary before, but things have been getting harder lately, and tonight might be the hardest night of all. I need someone I can talk to. Even if you can’t answer back.

Plus, I told Aunt Mandy I couldn’t join the prayer circle be­cause I had too much homework. Tomorrow’s the last day of school, so I don’t have any homework, but she doesn’t know that. If I keep writing in this notebook, maybe she’ll think homework is really what I’m doing.

I guess I could write to my new “pen pal” instead. That might count as homework. It would be closer than writing a fake letter to a famous San Francisco homosexual, anyway, but I can’t handle the thought of writing to some stranger right now.

Technically you’re a stranger, too, Harvey, but you don’t feel like one. That’s why I wanted to write to you, instead of “Dear Diary” or something.

Read More

It’s ironic, though, that my pen pal lives in San Francisco, too. I wonder if she’s ever met you. How big is the city, any­way? I read a magazine article that said gay people could hold hands walking down the street there, and no one minds. Is that true?

Ugh. The prayer circle’s starting over. Brett and Carolyn are leading the Lord’s Prayer again. It’s probably the only prayer they know.

We’ve been cooped up in the church basement for five hours now—my whole family, plus the youth group, plus a bunch of the other Protect Our Children volunteers. Along with Aunt Mandy and Uncle Russell, of course. The results from Miami should come in any minute.

You probably already know this—wait, who am I kidding? Of course you know, Harvey—but there was a vote today in Florida. They were voting on homosexuality, so our church, New Way Baptist, was heavily involved, even though we’re on the opposite side of the country. Everyone in our youth group was required to volunteer. I worked in the office Aunt Mandy and Uncle Russell set up in their den, answering phones and putting together mailings and counting donations to the New Way Protect Our Children Fund. We had bake sales and car washes to raise money to send to Anita Bryant, too.

You know all about Anita Bryant, obviously. You’re prob­ably just as scared of her as I am. Although, come to think of it, whenever I see you in the newspaper, you look the oppo­site of afraid. In pictures, you’re always smiling.

Don’t you get anxious, having everyone know? I’m ter­rified all the time, and no one even knows about me yet. I hope they never find out.

Maybe I should pray for that. Ha.

Okay, the Lord’s Prayer is over and now Uncle Russell’s making everyone silently call on God to save the good Chris­tians of Florida from sin. I hope I can keep writing without getting in trouble.

Ugh, look at them all, showing off how devout they are. The only two people in this room who aren’t clasping their hands in front of them and moving their lips dramatically are me and Aunt Mandy, but that’s because I’m a grievous sinner—obviously—and Aunt Mandy keeps peeking out from her shut eyes at the phone next to her.

I’m not sure how much you can concentrate on God when you’re solely focused on being ready to snatch up the receiver the second it starts to shake. Maybe she’ll grab it so hard, it’ll crush to a pulp in her fist like one of Anita Bryant’s fucking Florida oranges.

I wonder what you’re doing tonight, Harvey. Probably waiting by your phone, too. Only you’re in San Francisco, and if you’re praying, you’re praying for the opposite of what Aunt Mandy and everyone else in our church basement is praying for.

It seems pointless to pray now, though. The votes have already been cast, so we’re just waiting to hear the results. There’s a reporter from my aunt and uncle’s favorite radio station in L.A. sitting at the back of the room, ready to in­terview Uncle Russell once we know what happened. Even though we basically already do.

My mom showed up at church tonight with a box of bal­loons from the supermarket, but Aunt Mandy wouldn’t let anyone touch them until the announcement, so at the mo­ment the box is sitting in the closet under a stack of old com­munion trays. The second that phone starts to ring, though,

I just bet Aunt Mandy’s going to haul out that box and make us all start blowing up those crappy balloons.

I wonder if you’ve heard of my aunt. She wants you to. She knows exactly who you are, of course—you’re her enemy.

Which makes me your enemy, too, I guess. I’m not eigh­teen, and it’s not as if I could’ve voted in an election in Miami even if I were, but I’ve still spent the past two months fold­ing up comic books about the destruction of Sodom to mail out to churches in Florida.

I’m a soldier for Christ. That’s what Aunt Mandy calls me, anyway. And since I do everything she says, she must be right.

Writing to you instead of praying with the others is the closest I’ve ever come to rebelling. That’s how much of a coward I am, Harvey.

I wish I had the nerve to tell my aunt to go shove it. That’s what I’d really pray for—the nerve, I mean. If I thought prayer ever helped anything.

Shit, the phone’s ringing. More later.

Tammy


About Robin Talley

Robin Talley studied literature and communications at American University. She lives in Washington, DC, with her wife, but visits both Boston and New York regularly despite her moral opposition to Massachusetts winters and Times Square. Her first book was 2014's Lies We Tell Ourselves.




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