7 atmospheric &/or melancholy reads that will enhance your FOLKLORE listening

Hello, and HAPPY TAYLOR SWIFT DAY!!!

I may as well forewarn you all now: you can probably expect a lot of Taylor Swift content coming up when everyone makes their own FOLKLORE book tags and readathons come up and other content. I am not sorry, because the past few years have made me a huge Taylor Swift stan and honestly, my life has improved a lot since becoming a TS stan.

ANYWAY. This post is here to help inspire your reading picks to accompany your FOLKLORE listening as you dive deep into the album and imagine yourself crying in the woods with the leaves crinkling under you wearing your ex girlfriend’s favorite cardigan. So, I present to you atmospheric and/or melancholy reads that have the mood of FOLKLORE. Enjoy!

the devouring gray – Christine Lynn Herman

While thinking about books that fit the mood of FOLKLORE, THE DEVOURING GRAY immediately came to mind. This book is a bisexual anthem about a town with a mysterious history, very creepy woods, a monster, and lots of angsty romance. TDG is full of moody bisexuals who would definitely listen to FOLKLORE while researching the town’s history and trying to find a way to defeat the Beast that’s gobbling people up and making the forest sick.

house of salt and sorrows – erin a. craig

HOUSE OF SALT AND SORROWS is a very eerie retelling of the Twelve Dancing Princesses where the “princesses” all live in an old manor by the sea and they seemed to be cursed because the sisters keep dying. This book made me coin in my mind the genre “ocean gothic”–i. e. eerie and dark ocean books with death and ghosts.

summer of salt – katrina leno

Okay, this book doesnt *exactly* fit the vibe of atmospheric and melancholy, but I think the characters in this book would definitely listen to FOLKLORE. SUMMER OF SALT is a sapphic book about a girl waiting to receive the magical powers that have been passed down to women in her family for generations. However, when something bad on the island happens involving a legendary bird, the summer visitors to the island turn to the magical family and look for someone there to blame.

sawkill girls – claire legrand

The slow, sleepy-but-eerie pace of this book reminds me of FOLKLORE a lot. Think “Exile.” Marion, Zoe, and Val all live on Sawkill Rock, where there is an urban legend of a monster in the woods, only Val knows it might not really just be an urban legend after all.

the last true poets of the sea – julia drake

I am so annoyed at myself for not having finished this one even though I really liked the part of it I read. This sad, sapphic book about shipwrecks and mental health struggles is perfect for FOLKLORE. “Cardigan” belongs on a playlist about Orion and Liv’s relationship. Sarcastic, moody Violet, our MC who is trying to find the right words to say to her brother who is in the hospital for a suicide attempt, would probably listen to “Betty” on the plane to Lyric, Maine, where she and Liv attempt to uncover the real story of how Violet’s family founded the town after a shipwreck.

the sky is everywhere – jandy nelson

I know this book is really old and has a love triangle, but it will always be one of my favorites. The lyrical writing just brims with raw emotion, and I promise it will destroy you. It’s about Lennie, who just lost her sister, and her relationships with two guys–one with her sister’s boyfriend, and one with a new boy in town.

extraordinary means – robyn schneider

Actually, a lot of Robyn Schneider’s books would go well with FOLKLORE, but this one stuck out to me because it definitely has a strong melancholy vibe because it’s set at a boarding school for sick teens. I don’t remember much about the plot to be honest, but I do remember I really liked it and even gifted it to the person I was dating at the time.

There were so many books I could’ve picked for a melancholy/atmospheric themed list, but these ended up being the ones that especially stood out to be relevant to read while listening to FOLKLORE! I hope I’ve managed to add some books to your TBR, and that you get to listen to FOLKLORE as many times as your heart desires this weekend!

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