Friday, May 15, 2009


Another Cello-Novel

"The Rose Variations," by Marisha Chamberlain, is the story of a young cellist/composer who arrives in St. Paul, Minnesota in the mid-70s to take up a position in a college music department. We follow 'Rose' from lover to lover as she "comes of age" while dealing with the all-too-predictable challenges of being a novice female composer in a rarefied world dominated by males. Don't expect to find any stirring descriptions of her passion or devotion to those deep rich tones she supposedly draws from her cello. For all that it mattered to the plot, Rose could just as easily have played the clarinet or trombone.

I can only imagine how difficult it would be to realistically portray the inner struggles faced by any musician looking for a break. Still, I wish we could have seen a little more of that side of Rose.

As a cellist wannabe, I have sought out and read just about anything that involves cellists (including more than 185 [active] blogs, a bunch of Google news alerts, and the like). So, even if I'd known beforehand how small a role the cello actually plays in this book, I guess I probably would have still gone ahead and read it anyway.

On another front, we're all hopeful that these last three glorious weeks of warm sunny weather are a sign that we can expect a great summer, for a change...

Thanks for your review. I have had this book sitting on my desk for at least a month, as I, too, collect cello books, or books is which cello somehow plays a role. I am sorry to learn the cello does not play a great role, but I'm going to read it anyway too. :-)
Post a Comment

Links to this post:

<< Home