Monday, October 26, 2015

Review: A Woman of Note by Carol M. Cram

Virtuoso pianist Isabette Grüber captivates audiences in the salons and concert halls of early nineteenth-century Vienna. Yet in a profession dominated by men, Isabette longs to compose and play her own music—a secret she keeps from both her lascivious manager and her resentful mother. She meets and loves Amelia Mason, a dazzling American singer with her own secrets, and Josef Hauser, an ambitious young composer. But even they cannot fully comprehend the depths of Isabette’s talent.

Her ambitions come with a price when Isabette embarks on a journey that delicately balances the line between duty and passion. Amid heartbreak and sacrifice, music remains her one constant. With cameos from classical music figures such as Chopin, Schubert, and Berlioz, A Woman of Note is an intricately crafted and fascinating tale about one woman’s struggle to find her soul’s song in a dissonant world.
 
Paperback, 358 pages
Published September 8th 2015 by Lake Union Publishing 
arc: from publisher (via netgalley)
****
 
This is my first time reading Carol M. Cram, though I do have her first book,  The Towers of Tuscany waiting patiently on my tbr pile.

Beginning in 1827 and continuing in the 1830's here is the story of Isabette Gruber a pianist living in Vienna.  Though this book is not based on a real historical figure the book felt like it did.  As a multi talented Isabette struggled through life she encounters many obstacles in her way, a dominating mother, insane family members, a society that doesn't take women composers/musicians seriously.

A Woman of Note was written in such a way that it wasn't hard to feel the times and be transported to the 1830's, to feel societies prejudices towards women and their roles.  I could feel the coldness in relationships and the way of life there. Not being too impressed with either Amelia or Josef, didn't trusting either of them, the author did a great job of portraying them in that light.

The ending was nice, but maybe an epoligue closing things off would have given the story a little bit more of closure.

Again the Author Notes are a favorite and this book did not disappoint there, a lovely couple of pages finishing this book off with the right tone.

Thank you to the publisher via netgalley for a chance to review this book.

Be sure to come back tomorrow when the author visits Just One More Chaper

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