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Beautiful Music by Michael ZadoorianI am such a huge fan of this book and this author. Beautiful Music, set in 1970s Detroit, is just what the title states. A young Danny Yzemski is growing up chunky kid with a love of pop radio and a turbulent home life. He starts his freshman year in a new school being confronted by racial tension issues previously he only experienced through the news and his mother's snide comments.  When a tragedy happens, Danny's mother becomes more and more obsessed with the world's cultural changes and tries to drive them out of her life with booze and pills. In this storm, Danny finds comfort in music. Like beautiful music, this book is permeated with the power to make you sad, lift you up, and carry you home.

Beautiful Music by Michael Zadoorian ($16.95*, Akashic Books), recommended by Fountain Books, Richmond, VA.