When pianist Bernard Winter first meets his student, Lydia, he doesn't see anything particularly extraordinary about this recently divorced woman who hopes playing piano will soften the pain of her failed marriage. Then Lydia plays for him, and beneath her amateurish technique, he detects a conviction, a joy in the music that sets her apart. Winter takes her on and soon falls in love with her. So much faith does he have in her musical ability that he decides to return to the cutthroat world of professional music in order to play with her in a joint recital at Carnegie Hall, where a terrible secret is revealed.
From Library Journal
Concepts of success and failure float through this first novel from Starer, whose autobiography (Continuo, LJ 3/1/87) detailed his life in the music world as a composer and friend of Martha Graham, among others. Here, Bernard Winter, a failed concert pianist and music teacher, is impressed by new student Lydia Harding's powerful playing and her ability to remember pieces she learned over eight years earlier. As their lessons progress, Bernard not only connects with her musically but also emotionally. Starer reveals the behind-the-scenes nature of the concert circuit?getting a manager, planning a repertoire, and booking dates?while contrasting Bernard's earlier marriage to a rising opera star with his relationship with Lydia, filled with shared enthusiasm. Despite this unexpected glimpse into the classical music world and the reader's satisfaction when Bernard finally understands the true nature of success, the book suffers from a thin plot and flat dialog. An optional purchase.?Joshua Cohen, Mid-Hudson Lib. System, Poughkeepsie, N.Y.
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc.