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15 Classic Books Featured in Waiting for the Night Song by Julie Carrick Dalton

By Lizzy Hosty

Waiting for the Night Song by Julie Carrick Dalton is not only the perfect climate thriller revolving around friendships to read with your book club – it’s also a treasure trove of classic literature you can read once you’re done! Dalton’s debut, about both the past and present of Cadie Kessler and how those two are intimately connected when secrets unearth, is ripe with book references from To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee to Pippi Longstocking by Astrid Lindgren to The Swiss Family Robinson by Johann David Wyss. Suffice to say, there’s something here for everyone.

Read about the books below, and grab your copy of Waiting for the Night Song—available now wherever books are sold!


Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret by Judy Blume

Cadie originally rebelled against the idea of her best friend, Daniella, of giving their potential new friend, Garrett, a copy of Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret by Judy Blume, because she thought he wouldn’t like it. However, the inclusion of this book by the girls led to an important scene.

Blueberries for Sal by Robert McCloskey

Another important book is Blueberries for Sal by Robert McCloskey, as Daniella named her daughter Sal after this book from her childhood. Cadie made the connection almost instantly when the two connected after all those years.

The Call of the Wild by Jack London

Besides being used as a sort of foreshadowing for a pivotal moment in the book, it’s also worth mentioning that The Call of the Wild by Jack London was made into a movie last year, starring Harrison Ford!

A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court by Mark Twain

Mentioned more than halfway through the book, A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court by Mark Twain was in a stack of books that Cadie wanted Garrett to read but he never got around to them.

The Dark is Rising by Susan Cooper

Daniella suggested The Dark is Rising by Susan Cooper for Garrett to read, but the book gained importance as a vessel for Garrett and Cadie to pass secret messages to each other, amongst other books.

Great Expectations by Charles Dickens

While Garrett never finished Great Expectations by Charles Dickens, he nevertheless cleverly used the book, and another, to ask Cadie out on a date – though she didn’t understand it at the time.

The Hobbit by J. R. R. Tolkien

While Cadie was on the verge of a panic attack, thinking about the possibility of reading The Hobbit by J. R. R. Tolkien and disappearing into another world calmed her down momentarily… before an important scene occurred to disrupt those plans.

Kidnapped by Robert Louis Stevenson

A metaphor for how Cadie and Daniela viewed Garrett’s current living situation, Kidnapped by Robert Louis Stevenson was also another book they gave him to read. This was also another book that Cadie and Garrett used to communicate secretly.

The Outsiders by S. E. Hinton

Yet another book that was used to speak in code, Garrett used The Outsiders by S. E. Hinton to express his attraction for Cadie, telling her that she was prettier than the female love interest of the classic, Cherry Valance.

Pippi Longstocking by Astrid Lindgren

Along with Great Expectations, Garrett used Pippi Longstocking by Astrid Lindgren to ask Cadie out on a date, proposing the question of what if Pip, the main character in Great Expectations, and Pippi went on a date.

Robinson Crusoe by Daniel Defoe

After Daniella and Cadie first gave a book to Garrett to read, the next book that Cadie thought he would like was Robinson Crusoe by Daniel Defoe.

The Swiss Family Robinson by Johann David Wyss

The first book Cadie and Daniella gave Garrett to read, The Swiss Family Robinson by Johann David Wyss kicked off a long lasting relationship between the three of them (that was, of course, bolstered by the thrilling events that make up this debut).

Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson

Towards the beginning of the three main characters’ friendship, another book to give to Garrett to follow up The Swiss Family Robinson that was suggested almost simultaneously by Cadie and Daniella was Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson.

Tuck Everlasting by Natalie Babbitt

Besides having been used to propose that Pip and Pippi should go out on a date in a secret message from Garrett to Cadie, the book was also used in a pivotal moment later in the book.

A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle

The last book to round out our list, A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle was both a book Garrett didn’t get around to reading, suggested by Cadie, but because of certain, important events later, he never actually would.

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