Andrew Eiger, an ambitious American musicologist, is stuck in a small college in the Midwest when fate delivers him an original fifteenth-century manuscript. It’s his calling card to the finest academic institutions, but first he has to crack the notational code and convince Emma Mitchell – the dynamic conductor of the renowned early-music group, Beyond Compere – to share his vision of the composition’s glittering premiere. But who wrote it? The true story is yet to be discovered, hidden in a memoir that describes the treachery of the famous Josquin Desprez.
Received in paper form from the publishers via the June 2013 Librarything Early Reviewers batch.
This is told in three different voices, that of Andrew, Emma, and a 16th century narrator.
Andrew is a hard character to like, fixated on his manuscript and a long forgotten piece of work, which Andrew hopes to share with Emma to bring to the world. Emma is bringing her group on a punishing touring schedule, and has her own career aspirations.
The story culminates in a performance in Tours, France where Andrew proposes this newly found work to Emma. A drunken night in a brasserie is as far as I got with the book before I had to abandon it – I had no energy to go any further even though I had about 50 pages left (of a book 240 pages long).
I Think this book has suffered in being the latest in a long line of review books, in that I struggled to complete it. Another time, when I’m in another frame of mind I think I may well be able to complete it and give it a much more resoundingly positive review.