Thursday, July 1, 2010

Book Review: Indigo Blues by Danielle Joseph



I never asked to be famous—or infamous. Such is my fate for briefly dating (and dumping) Adam Spade. Yes, the Adam from the indie rock band Blank Stare who wrote "Indigo Blues"—the song that gave the band overnight success, propelled them to New York City, and stole my precious anonymity. Now I'm pawed by fans, stalked by reporters, and pegged as a vicious heartbreaker. And Adam is still calling me. Doesn't he have better things to do?


With a hit single and a promising career, I should be on top of the world. People on the street are beginning to recognize me, which is cool. And scary. The band is counting on me to write another hit, but I can't stop thinking about Indigo. Why won't she answer the phone?


A mix of laid back and charged, Indigo Blues is a great story about not only broken hearts but how quickly one thing can get out of control. With split perspectives, the reader gets a strong, sympathetic connection with both Adam and Indigo, creating a great bond and little bias throughout. The music angle adds a certain spark, creating a unique situation and a great pitch for the broken heart aspect.

Indigo is an appreciable character, frustrated at the situation she suddenly finds herself in when her ex-boyfriend not only writes a song about her that becomes an overnight hit but uses her real and obviously unique name for it. Now having to fend off questions about tearing Adam’s heart out, people questioning how nice she really is, and no longer able to simply fly under the radar, Indigo is forced to not only sort out her feelings with Adam but also learn how to maintain a somewhat normal life. This creates a big sympathetic aspect for Indigo and pitches her in an interesting light. Indigo is an intelligent, strong character and though she does show some weakness, she is rarely whiny or obnoxious even with the situation.

Adam is quiet and sweet, highly sympathetic not only because he was the one to have his heart broken but also in the way Joseph poses his thoughts and feelings. He didn’t intend to cause problems for Indigo with the song nor did he really expect his band to hit it big as a result. Struggling to find a way to at least talk to her and balance his newfound fame, Adam’s ride is an interesting one and the chapters from his side were a fantastic addition to the overall tone and effect of the story. His interactions with his band mates are hilarious and show his character strongly, as do the parts with the girl he starts dating.

The plot is a smooth one, centered around Adam’s band trying to finish a record and stay on top of their fame rather than being a one hit wonder as well as focused on Indigo’s handling of the situation. While she is still in high school and dealing with everything related to that on top of the song issue, Adam is twenty and completely focused on the band. It is a great contrast between the two and a refreshing mix. Things progress at a steady pace, giving enough of the teenage mindset and events from Indigo’s side. The two characters live in different states at this point, stuck only with phone calls and texts for main communication but tied together by the song and their history.

The meaning behind the band’s name, Blank Stare, is a comical one and Joseph has added several small quirks throughout the book to entertain readers and make it unique. The writing is well done, giving separate mental tones to both characters while still holding a certain level of fluidity that is all Joseph’s ability. Rarely does the plot die down and there are several different arcs and events that stand alone but help add to the overall effect. The only real downfall for me, personally, was later in the book. I could have used a little more involvement as the two tried to work things out- I felt the ultimate outcome and their decision whether to forgive or not was a little rushed given the build up. Regardless of this, it was still an overall great read.

Indigo Blues is a cute read with a great ending, one that is built towards and completely understandable. The plot holds a few surprising turns and reveals and holds a mix of emotional and strong with fun and light. This is a great summer read with some refreshing aspects, and many deeper bits that linger after and don't reveal themselves until further thought is put in. One simple action sparked the entire series of events and Joseph does a remarkable exploring the fallout.

Source: Review copy received from the author/publisher free of charge in exchange for review
Reading level: Young Adult
Paperback: 240 pages
Publisher: Flux (July 1, 2010)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0738720593
ISBN-13: 978-0738720593

Author's Website


  1. Great review! I'm really into all these summer reads with a bit of depth and this one sounds perfect. :)

  2. Great Review! I really want to read this now because it reminds me of Audrey,Wait!

  3. This is the first time I hear of this and it sounds good. Glad you liked it :) Awesome review!