"The One Song that Epitomizes CATHERINE"
by April Lindner
When I imagine that opening scene, I see Catherine hurrying home in her private school uniform, her long, dark hair streaming behind her and her backpack slung across one shoulder—and the song I hear in my head is Mystery Achievement by The Pretenders. The song’s drum intro, and it’s catchy bass line is the sound of Catherine striding down the Bowery, eager to get home and change out of her uniform. Catherine is pretty, confident and a little bit tough on the outside, but softhearted on the inside—and the voice of Chryssie Hynde of the Pretenders conveys those qualities to me. Besides, Catherine loves music, and The Pretenders would be just the kind of band she would adore.
Then there are the lyrics. Chryssie snarls the opening lines: “Mystery achievement, don’t breathe down my neck, no.” Catherine’s independent; she doesn’t like anybody breathing down her neck. She’s also a real achiever—a great student, dead set on getting into Harvard and writing poetry that will set the world on fire. She becomes fascinated with unlocking the mystery of Hence, getting him to open up to her, and when the two of them fall in love, it’s an obsessive kind of attachment for both of them: “Every day, every nighttime I find/Mystery achievement/You’re on my mind, on my mind, on my mind.” The song’s hard driving rhythm conveys some of that obsessiveness, the energy and edginess that I was hoping to capture in Catherine’s chapters.
Then there’s the book’s other narrator, Catherine’s daughter, Chelsea. All her life she’s been told her mother died of a brief illness when she was three. The book begins with seventeen-year-old Chelsea accidentally finding a letter her mother wrote fourteen years ago, and learning that her mother didn’t die after all—she disappeared. Angry with her father and anxious to track down her mother, Chelsea runs off to the letter’s return address—the Underground. She talks her way inside, trying to pry information from the club’s successful but embittered owner, Hence.
The song that played in my head while I wrote Chelsea’s chapters is “New York Nights” by Jesse Malin. The very first time I heard this song, I was writing the novel in a coffee shop in Philadelphia. Right away I was struck by the lush, romantic tune, and by Malin’s distinctive voice singing about high-top sneakers and heaven’s hand me downs. Then the lyrics of the chorus jumped right out at me:
Hold me close in the New York night
a holy ghost or a satellite
Promise me it will be okay
Your mother dreamed of a better day.
Chills ran down my spine; it was as if the song had been written for Chelsea. Hooked, I stopped writing and just listened, growing more intrigued by the second. Then came the moment that blew me away: toward the end of the song, Jesse Malin sings, “From the desert to this love stained town/I still find comfort in the underground.” The Underground? It seemed like a sign.
After that, I started listening obsessively to Jesse Malin, falling in love with his songs. I did a little research and learned that, like Hence, Jesse owns a nightclubs in New York City, The Bowery Electric, which even happens to be located almost exactly where I imagined the Underground. In celebration of this bizarre coincidence,the weekend after I finished the first draft of Catherine, my husband and I drove up to New York City to see Jesse Malin play a show at his own club. A really great show was made even better by the spooky feeling that I was walking in Chelsea’s footsteps. Jesse didn’t play New York Nights that show. In fact, I’ve seen him many times since, and he still hasn’t played it. But I’ll keep going to shows, and hoping that one of these nights, he’ll play it for Chelsea.
Author: April Lindner
Genre: Young Adult
Published: January 2, 2013
Buy the Book: Amazon | Barnes & Noble
A forbidden romance. A modern mystery. Wuthering Heights as you’ve never seen it before.
Catherine is tired of struggling musicians befriending her just so they can get a gig at her Dad’s famous Manhattan club, The Underground. Then she meets mysterious Hence, an unbelievably passionate and talented musician on the brink of success. As their relationship grows, both are swept away in a fiery romance. But when their love is tested by a cruel whim of fate, will pride keep them apart?
Chelsea has always believed that her mom died of a sudden illness, until she finds a letter her dad has kept from her for years—a letter from her mom, Catherine, who didn’t die: She disappeared. Driven by unanswered questions, Chelsea sets out to look for her—starting with the return address on the letter: The Underground.
Told in two voices, twenty years apart, Catherine interweaves a timeless forbidden romance with a compelling modern mystery.
April Lindner is the author of two novels, Catherine, a modernization of Wuthering Heights, and Jane, an update of Jane Eyre. She also has published two poetry collections, Skin and This Bed Our Bodies Shaped.
She plays acoustic guitar badly, sees more rock concerts than she’d care to admit, travels whenever she can, cooks Italian food, and lavishes attention on her pets—two Labrador retriever mixes and two excitable guinea pigs.
A professor of English at Saint Joseph’s University, April lives in Pennsylvania with her husband and two sons.
Giveaway provided by author via Rockstar Book Tours
A hardcover copy of CATHERINE by April Lindner to THREE (3) winners.
- It is a tour-wide giveaway shared across all the stops via a common Rafflecopter.
- Giveaway is US only.
- Must be 13 or older to enter.
- Giveaway ends July 4 at 11:59 p.m.
- Winners will be chosen via Rafflecopter and contacted by email.
- Mandatory requirement is to leave a comment. Optional entries are to Like the CATHERINE Facebook page, follow the author on Twitter and Tweet (daily) about the tour/giveaway.
- All giveaway options are weighted evenly.
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CATHERINE BLOG TOUR SCHEDULE
June 17th - Bewitched Bookworms - Review + Interview
June 18th - Jessabella Reads - Guest Post
June 19th - Laurie's Thoughts and Reviews - Interview
June 20th - Romancing the Dark Side - Guest Post
June 20th - Between the Pages - Review
June 21st - Emily's Crammed Bookshelf - Interview
June 21st - A Little Shelf of Heaven - Review
June 24th - Parajunkee - Guest Post
June 25th - The Book Belles - Interview
June 25th - The Bookmark Blog - Review
June 26th - Curling Up With A Good Book - Review
June 26th - Ink Skies - Interview
June 27th - BookHounds - Guest Post
June 27th - To Read or Not To Read - Review
June 28th - Tales of the Ravenous Reader - Guest Post