Custom Taylor-ed: Red, 1989 + Reputation

December 22, 2020


It's no secret that I'm a Taylor Swift fan. Her music has been the dominant soundtrack for many of the biggest, most memorable moments in my life, and I'm always admiring her creativity and cleverness with every new release. I've seen her in concert (three times when she was on tour, and once when she made a surprise appearance during an Ed Sheeran show), lined up for her merch pop-ups in New York and had listening parties with my usual gang of Swifties for years now. And I'm pretty sure she'll be a stable part of the soundtrack of my life for years to come!

Since we were blessed with not just one but two new albums from her during 2020, I figured it was high time I finally sat my butt down and did a series of just for fun posts that I've been meaning to do for a while highlighting her albums, my 5 favorite tracks (and you get the bonus of seeing the top 3 tracks from Macky, my sisters Mel & Rachel and my cousin Carmela too) and, in the spirit of my former Tunes & Tales posts, share some matching book recommendations. (This is by no means an original idea, as I've seen variations of it all over the web, but I wanted to share my own list of faves!)

In case you missed it, yesterday, I did the Custom Taylor-ed post featuring the albums Taylor Swift, Fearless and Speak Now. Hope you'll check out my favorite tracks from those albums and the books I paired with them!


Red is such a distinct album in Swift's line-up, and it's definitely one album where it feels like a heartbreak album (AKA work that was definitely fueled by a failed romance). I love that Swift's songwriting shines in this one and I find a lot of the tracks have very clever lyrical turns. Plus, musically, it still has some of the coolest sounds too. I'm also pretty sad that I didn't get to see this one in concert because it has so many songs that I really love.

My Favorites & Book Recs
If you like State of Grace... read Red, White and Royal Blue.
If you like Red... read Cold Snap.
If you like Everything Has Changed... read The Ex Talk.
If you like Starlight... read Lovely War.
If you like Begin Again... read Beach Read or Blue-Eyed Devil.

Macky's Favorites: Come Back, Be Here, All Too Well, Everything Has Changed
Mel's Favorites: All Too Well, State of Grace, Everything Has Changed
Mela's Favorites: State of Grace, All Too Well, Treacherous
Rachel's Favorites: State of Grace, Treacherous, I Knew You Were Trouble


1989 is definitely Taylor Swift's declaration that she's a full-on pop artist now. She experimented with her sound and style, and it really paid off (in my humble fan's opinion)! I definitely remember the day she released the first single and how I shimmied to it in my office desk chair. And when the album officially dropped, it was impossible for me not to bop around and fall in love with it. The first time I ever got to catch one of her shows was also for this album, and it will always be a lovely memory!

My Favorites & Book Recs
If you like Style... read Warcross.
If you like Clean... read Stronger Than You Know.
If you like I Know Places... read The Darkest Legacy. (Definitely recommend reading The Darkest Minds series first!)
If you like Wildest Dreams... read Tales from the Shadowhunter Academy. (Read the other Shadowhunters books first!)
If you like This Love... read Fable.

Macky's Favorites: Style, This Love, Out of the Woods
Mel's Favorites: Style, Out of the Woods, Wildest Dreams
Mela's Favorites: Style, Wildest Dreams, You are in Love
Rachel's Favorites: Out of the Woods, Style, Shake It Off


Reputation will always have a special place in my heart for a number of reasons. To be fair, I wasn't sure how I would feel about the album overall prior to its release, but immediately discovered that I should never doubt Taylor because I have loved every single musical adventure she's taken her fans on. It was the first time I got to do an in-person listening party with my sisters and cousin, the first merch pop-up I got to go to and the first Swift show Macky and I ever got to see together. It's also just such a vibe.

My Favorites & Book Recs
If you like Delicate... read Last Will and Testament.
If you like Getaway Car... read The Wicked King. (Definitely read The Cruel Prince first!)
If you like I Did Something Bad... read Forest of a Thousand Lanterns.
If you like Don't Blame Me... read Daughter of Smoke and Bone.
If you like King of My Heart... read Ghosts of the Shadow Market ("The Land I Lost") + Queen of Air and Darkness (mostly for the ending). (You should probably read the other Shadowhunters books first!)

Macky's Favorites: Getaway Car, Dress, King of My Heart
Mel's Favorites: Don't Blame Me, Delicate, Dancing with Our Hands
Mela's Favorites: Ready for It, Dancing with Our Hands Tied, Don't Blame Me
Rachel's Favorites: Delicate, I Did Something Bad, Don't Blame Me

Post a Comment

Thanks for leaving a comment! I love seeing what you have to say, and will try to reply (here or on Twitter) as soon as I can :)

Latest Instagrams

© Alexa Loves Books. Design by FCD.