Bullet Point-Review: No Sad Songs, Frank Morelli

Hello friends! I’m going to review a short, sweet, fun yet also heavy kind of book today in this bullet-point review!

The book

Frank Morelli, No Sad Songs, Published by Fish Out of Water Books, February 20th, 2018.

goodreads-badge-add-plus-fad3b68d35050280ea55d50f17c654b5Following a family tragedy, 18-year-old Gabe LoScuda suddenly finds himself thrust into the role of caregiver for his ailing grandfather. Between the shopping trips and the doctor visits with Grandpa, Gabe and his friend John try to salvage their senior year, meet girls, and make the varsity baseball team. It doesn’t take long for Gabe to realize that going to school and looking after a grandfather with Alzheimer’s is more work than he ever imagined. And when long-lost Uncle Nick appears on the scene, Gabe soon finds that living with Nick and Grandpa is like babysitting two grown men. Aside from John, the only person who truly understands Gabe is Sofia, a punk-rocking rebel he meets at the veteran’s hospital. When these three unlikely friends are faced with a serious dilemma, will they do what it takes to save Grandpa? If there’s a chance of preserving the final shreds of Grandpa’s dignity, Gabe may have to make the most gut-wrenching decision of his life—and there’s no way out.



  • No Sad Songs is, before anything else, a story with family at its heart and what you do to protect them the best that you can. I love family focuses in stories.
  • I also love seeing the relationship growing between Gabe and his grandfather, as Gabe took care of him and grew attached to him. That was really endearing to follow.
  • The friendships in this story were also pretty amazing, especially the main friendship here, between Gabe and his best friend, John. I appreciated how John was always there for him, helping him and not afraid to stand up against him when it was needed.
  • No Sad Songs was an easy book to read: despite the heavy themes tackled (taking care of a grandfather with alzheimer), the story was delivered in a sweet way, quickly paced, with endearing, heavy moments lightened up with touches of humor here and there, which I appreciated a lot.
  • I also loved the other themes explored quickly in the story, such as fitting in, peer pressure to be accepted in a group, popularity and how it can influence the way you think and who you are.



  • If I really enjoyed reading about the main character, I’m a bit sad that I found myself a bit disconnected from him. I’m thinking that it’s more of a case of, it’s not me, it’s you though: Gabe’s voice was super endearing, fun and strong all at once and I appreciated it a lot, I just wanted to feel more for him.
  • I’m a bit sad that the secondary characters weren’t more explored: as much as I loved John, I would have wanted to get to know him a bit deeper, especially given that he was such a strong character and force in Gabe’s life and story.


Overall, No Sad Songs was an endearing story with a huge focus on family, care takers and everything that they do and the strength that it takes. Despite its heavy themes, the author managed to give its funny moments and to make this an endearing, sweet tale of family, friendships and love.

Final rating: 3 drops!

Thank you so much to the author for sending me a free digital copy of his book. This did not, in any way, influence my thoughts and rating on this.

Trigger warnings: if you found any, please let me know so I can add some!

Did you read No Sad Songs? Do you want to read it?

What’s the latest book you’ve read with a strong family presence? Any recommendations? Let me know in comments!

I’m still on a sort-of-break, in case you missed my previous posts. Will be back to answer to your comments and visit all of your lovely blogs on Sunday. Love you all x

Posted by

Book blogger, travel blogger, writer. 📚 |🌍 | 💞 Writing & Communications Graduate. French. Living on love, wanderlust and ya books.

35 thoughts on “Bullet Point-Review: No Sad Songs, Frank Morelli

    1. Oh I’m so glad to have brought this on your radar, but yes, I’m guessing you will have to be in the mood for this kind of read. It was really good though and endearing how the main character grew close to his grandfather as the story went on ❤
      Thank you so much for your sweet comment, Aimee! ❤ ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  1. I haven’t read this yet (or heard of it, honestly), but after reading your review, I’m definitely intrigued. It’s a bummer that you weren’t able to connect more with the main character, though – sometimes that can really make or break the reading experience.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Great review for this book Marie, and I’m really glad you enjoyed it. Books with strong family relationships are a weakness of mine (I think the last one I read was The Bear and the Nightingale, that has an amazing family relationship and I can’t wait to continue with the series now I’ve read the first book!) so this sounds like one I should definitely add to my to-read list. I think it’s great how the relationship between Gabe and his grandfather was developed, though it was a shame you didn’t feel connected to Gabe as the main character. Doesn’t seem like it spoiled your overall enjoyment of the story though.
    Again great review! 🙂 ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh thank you so much, Beth! 🙂
      I’m so happy you liked The bear and the nightingale, I feel like everyone has read and loved this book…. it makes me want to read it now hahaha 🙂
      I hope you’ll give this one a chance eventually, it was a lovely read 🙂
      thank you again!! ❤ ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  3. That was a really good bullet point review, Marie! I like that you added visuals as well (whenever I see Baseball related stuff, my interest is immediately peaked), but it’s too bad you felt a bit disconnected from the MC. Still, books with family focus are always celebrated in my mind as well. 😀 It’s an underrated theme people often forget to write about.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh thank you, Kat! ❤ I'm always trying to add visuals, but… sometimes it takes a whole lot of time hahaha, glad you like it 🙂
      I agree, it makes me so sad that books aren't family focused sometimes, I'm so happy whenever there's a great place for it in a story 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I use to be an activities coordinator at a care home so I’ve seen first hand how hard it is to take care of a loved one with Alzheimer’s. Most of the residents at the home had dementia and when I was there I basically played the character they thought I was that day. I can’t imagine how hard it must be for family members. I love that family was at the heart of the book, and I also love how there’s still a sprinkling of humour in it. It’s a shame you couldn’t connect with Gabe’s voice, I always hate it when I can’t make that connection with the main character cause I feel like it sometimes takes away the full emotional impact of the journey.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s exactly it – it was a really great book, but I think it would have had a bigger impact on me if I connected with Gabe’s voice a bit more.
      I feel like you could be interested in this, given your experience at a care home? I thought this book was so interesting and it was good to shine a light on a teenager having to take care of his grandfather with Alzheimer’s, definitely a theme we don’t see often in YA books 🙂
      thanky ou so much, Lois! ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Great review, Marie! I didn’t know about this before reading your review, but it sounds interesting. You know I love familial relationships as well and this one sounds even more important as it deals with mental health. Also, such a great topic, would love to see more books presenting subjects like this one!
    Lovely post, as always! ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Hello Marie!
    I enjoyed your review of this book. I am glad to hear that there are aspects that you liked, though it is disappointing when we are not able to relate to the main character as much as we wish to.
    I’ve read the Lara Jean series recently, which I really enjoyed because of the focus on family 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh thank you so much, Sophie! Yes, I felt a bit sad about that, but thankfully I still found the book really enjoyable 🙂
      OH YES the Lara Jean series is fantastic, I love the family and sisters dynamics in that one ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Nice review Marie! I haven’t heard about this book but it sounds interesting. I am sorry that you didn’t enjoy it as much as you wanted.
    I love the family representation in books and the special bondings like in here. And the mental disease rep is just cherry on the top for the story pov. I think we really need more such YA which focuses on family relationships 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Brilliant review! I love the sound of this having family at its heart and has a big focus on friendship 😀 And it’s great that it explores the subject of peer pressure as well. Shame you felt disconnected with the mc and the other characters could’ve been more developed.

    Liked by 1 person

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