The Brahms Deception

Louise Marley, Author
Louise Marley. Kensington, $15 trade paper (400p) ISBN 978-0-7582-6567-8
Reviewed on: 06/06/2011
Release date: 08/01/2011
Open Ebook - 400 pages - 978-0-7582-7254-6
Open Ebook - 1 pages - 978-1-306-68221-3
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Marley's second excursion into musical history (after 2010's Mozart's Blood) plays what-if with the relationship between Clara Schumann and Johannes Brahms, 14 years Schumann's junior. Musicologists from our own near future compete for the opportunity to "transfer" back in time and observe their study subjects firsthand for eight hours. Unattractive, frustrated Frederica Bannister gets her wealthy father to pull a few strings, undergoes the transfer—and does not return. Kristian North, enraged at losing the chance to observe Brahms, feels vindicated when the transfer scientists call him in to go after Frederica. The writing is competent and well paced, and Kristian is a sympathetic, heroic figure, though Frederica has no apparent motivation other than self-described ugliness and obsession. Marley is no Connie Willis, but the time-travel conceit is enough to support the romantic suspense. (Aug.)
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