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Jukebooks: As White As Snow by Salla Simukka

As White As SnowReaders first met Finnish Lumikki Andersson in the novel, As Red as Blood, when a bag of blood-soaked money led her on a dangerous mission. Now Lumikki is on vacation in Prague, pleased with her cherished solitude, the gorgeous view before her, and the sound of Shirley Manson’s voice as she sings about dark skies and rain. Then a strange girl appears, the same strange girl that Lumikki has seen at several other tourist locations in Prague. Much to Lumikki’s annoyance, the girl approaches. Everything changes when she speaks, however, telling Lumikki: “I think you’re my sister.”

The Shirley Manson song is “Only Happy When It Rains,” recorded in the mid-nineties by Manson and her band, Garbage. The song came together as the band sat around playing acoustic guitars, building on the lyric, “I’m only happy when it rains.” In a 1995 interview with Addicted to Noise (an early online music magazine,) guitarist Steve Marker explained:

It’s really just us poking fun of ourselves… We’re poking fun at the alternatrock angst, wearing your heart on your sleeve thing and at ourselves for writing such dark songs.

The video emphasizes the conscious mimicry of strange and dark themes so prevalent in alternative rock, combined with Garbage’s sly sense of fun.

Diane Colson, currently reading Still Waters by Ash Parsons.

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Diane Colson

I have been a librarian working with youth since 1998, beginning at the Alachua County Library District, and later at Palm Harbor Library and Nashville Public Library. Possibly because of the edgy nature of teen literature, or possibly because my maturation process crashed at the age of fifteen years-old, I love YA books. And I enjoy working with YAs as well, although I'm just as happy doing Toddler Time. By some good fortune, I have served on a number of YALSA selection committees (Outstanding Books for the College Bound, Popular Paperbacks, Alex Award, Odyssey Award, Nonfiction Award, Morris Award, and Printz) as well as a smattering of process committees. Currently I am serving on the YALSA Board. .I also review books for VOYA, School Library Journal's Adult4Teen Blog, BookPage, and Booklist.