Please be advised that this post contains spoilers which are preceded by red text.
Como el agua by Lianna – The title of this song translates to “Like Water”, but that’s not the only reason I added this! It’s also a song about a love that you don’t completely understand but you really want to be around that person all the time. Plus it’s a pretty chill tune.
Girls Like Girls by Hayley Kiyoko – I promise I didn’t put this on here only because Hayley is a sapphic icon. The purpose of adding it has more to do with the song’s backstory. Hayley wrote this song after a period with struggling to find the courage to put her real self into her music. Recognizing that struggle and having something amazing come out of it in the end aligns with Vanni’s sexuality arc.
Gotitas de amor by Jesse & Joy – The opening verse tells of how the singer has picked a flower from her inner garden to give to her lover and describes the flower as thorny and missing a couple petals, but it’s a pretty color and the representation of her love. This concept of a broken but growing love fits Vanni and Leigh’s relationship pretty well. Plus, with how Spanish grammar is, the lyrics are fairly gender neutral in regards to who the singer’s lover is.
Growing Pains by Alessia Cara – Growing up is so tough! Much of the book takes place in the summer after Vanni graduates high school, which is when real life typically gives us a huge slap in the face. Alessia Cara sings a lot about adjusting to adult life and the “real world” in her music, and this song, in particular, reminds me of how Vanni
Hometown by twenty one pilots – The chorus features the lyrics “Where we’re from, we’re no one / Our hometown’s in the dark,” which is most definitely how Vanni feels about La Trampa.
Jump by Simple Plan – So this song, by genre, is a lot different than the rest on this list, but the lyrics sound e x a c t l y like how Vanni feels at the beginning of the story, so quite honestly I couldn’t not add it.
Scared to Be Lonely by Martin Garrix, Dua Lipa – At the beginning of the story, we see Vanni struggling with her relationships with several boys that she’s been physically but not romantically involved with. I think at least one reason why she messed around with so many boys was that she was lonely.
Strangers by Halsey (feat. Lauren Jauregui) – Later in the story, Vanni and Leigh get into a fight that strains their relationship for a bit. In those scenes, this seems to fit because the song tells of a girl who’s in love with a girl that says their relationship is not real love, just a fling or a hookup.
Swim by Jack’s Mannequin – Andrew McMahon wrote this song during his battle with leukemia in his early twenties, so it’s safe to say, Jack’s Mannequin singer knows an awful lot about how it feels to have your body betray you. A large part of the plot is Vanni struggling with watching Huntington’s Disease take over her father’s body and worrying that the same could happen to her in a few years.
Warrior by Demi Lovato – Vanni and her family have already been through a lot when the story starts and they go through even more as it goes on. Nevertheless, Vanni finds her support system and really begins to figure out who she is and what she wants. The fear of one day developing Huntington’s like her father has held her back for so long, but when she comes to terms with the possibility, she comes out stronger than she’s ever been.
Why You’d Want to Live Here by Death Cab for Cutie – Okay, so this last song is fairly obviously about Los Angeles. While Like Water takes place in a small New Mexico town, the sentiment is very similar to how Vanni feels about her town.