American Music

Jane Mendelsohn, Author . Knopf $23.95 (237p) ISBN 978-0-307-27266-9

This digressive novel by the author of I Was Amelia Earhart probes intersecting tales that emerge from the work done by a masseuse-cum-shaman. Honor is a 21-year-old physical therapist at the Bronx VA hospital; Milo Hatch is a particularly traumatized patient who was severely wounded in Iraq. During Milo's treatment, both he and Honor begin having visions of people they don't know. The narrative breaks up in pursuit of the stories behind the visions of the late 1930s love triangle between Joe, a saxophone player and law student; his wife, Pearl, unable to have children after many miscarriages; and Pearl's cousin, Vivian, who shares with Joe a passion for jazz. (Mendelsohn provides, for instance, a tidy excursus on the significance of cymbals in jazz, tracing their provenance to 17th-century Istanbul.) The fallout from Joe and Vivian's messy affair connects back to present day, yet the music evoked by this ponderously embellished work remains a vague, distant noise. (June)

Reviewed on: 02/22/2010
Release date: 06/01/2010
Genre: Fiction
Book - 1 pages - 978-1-4417-5525-4
Ebook - 132 pages - 978-0-307-59368-9
Compact Disc - 978-1-4417-5522-3
MP3 CD - 978-1-4417-5523-0
Compact Disc - 978-1-4417-5520-9
Pre-Recorded Audio Player - 978-1-4417-5526-1
Paperback - 237 pages - 978-0-307-47397-4
Open Ebook - 272 pages - 978-2-7021-4315-5
Hardcover - 272 pages - 978-2-7021-4277-6
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