Playlist For The Dead by Michelle Falkoff
Published By: Harper Collins
Published On: January 27, 2015
Narrated By: Davis Brooks
Amazon | Goodreads
Here's what Sam knows: There was a party. There was a fight. The next morning, his best friend, Hayden, was dead. And all he left Sam was a playlist of songs, and a suicide note: For Sam—listen and you'll understand.
As he listens to song after song, Sam tries to face up to what happened the night Hayden killed himself. But it's only by taking out his earbuds and opening his eyes to the people around him that he will finally be able to piece together his best friend’s story. And maybe have a chance to change his own.
After his best friend Hayden unexpectedly commits suicide, leaving behind nothing but a playlist of songs, Sam is lost. With his only friend gone, all Sam can do is play video games and attempt to decipher Hayden’s final message to him, the playlist. With the accompanying note read ‘For Sam – listen and you’ll understand’, Sam sets out to uncover the truth surrounding is best friend’s death.
This was the first novel I decided to pick up as part of the Debut Author Challenge this year, so I was excited to get to it. Unfortunately, I found it to be quite boring. The idea of the story had great promise, with books of a similar theme proving to be very popular. However, this book was not as good as it could have been.
I found the plot twists to be either predictable or just not that exciting. I think this is the main reason I found this book to be boring. Though plenty was going on within the story, nothing was particularly exciting or shocking. This often meant that climactic moments ended up falling flat for me.
Unfortunately, I also felt nothing towards any of the characters. None were particularly likeable, though I didn’t particularly dislike any either. My indifference towards the characters made it hard for me to engage with their struggles throughout the story.
From the title and synopsis of the book, I understood that the playlist would play a significant part in the story. Having finished the book, I still don’t understand its significance at all. It seemed to have very little to do with Sam understanding Hayden’s situation. In fact, it almost seems as though it was simply used to fill up some space in the story. Maybe I’m missing something.
To be completely honest, if I hadn’t listened to this on audiobook I probably would have given up on it. I doubt I would have made the effort to sit down and struggle my way through this book. The fact that I could listen to it on the journey to and from university or while I was doing housework was probably the only reason I finished it.
Overall, I did not enjoy this book. I found it to be quite boring and just did not enjoy it. I expected something emotional or a great mystery to be uncovered but it completely fell flat for me. I really wanted to enjoy it, especially with it being a debut novel, but, unfortunately, I did not.