Novels Analyzing Musical Talent and Life: Background information when reading Bellweather Rhapsody

Summary |  Excerpt |  Reviews |  Beyond the Book |  Readalikes |  Genres & Themes |  Author Bio

Bellweather Rhapsody

by Kate Racculia

Bellweather Rhapsody by Kate Racculia X
Bellweather Rhapsody by Kate Racculia
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' Opinion:

     Not Yet Rated
  • First Published:
    May 2014, 352 pages
    Jun 2015, 352 pages

  • Rate this book

Book Reviewed by:
Sarah Sacha Dollacker

Buy This Book

About this Book

Beyond the Book:
Novels Analyzing Musical Talent and Life

Print Review

The characters in Racculia's novel attempt to understand the nature of musical talent and the ways in which it emerges or disappears to impact happiness. The following novels investigate the interaction of musical gifts and the pursuit of a fulfilled life:

Sight Reading Sight Reading by Daphne Kalotay
Kalotay's first novel was about ballet and Russian history. Her second novel, Sight Reading, explores the relationships between a few classical musicians in New England. As each of the characters delves deeper into work as professionals, the perfection they attain with their instruments or conducting baton eludes them in real life. Despite their prowess in music, they realize that they are living their lives merely sight reading, a term that describes the process of playing a composition for the first time without preparation.

Hiding Out At the Pancake Palace Hiding Out at the Pancake Palace by Nan Marino; a young-adult novel
Just as voice prodigy Elvis Ruby believes the stars are aligned to launch him into super fame, he chokes. He wins a coveted spot to perform on a national singing show, but rather than proving his extreme talent, he forgets the words and runs from the stage in embarrassment. Now he must recede into the woods of New England to escape the paparazzi's penetrating questions and figure out a new course in life. He thinks working at his aunt's pancake house is the perfect place, until he meets Cecilia, the girl who always speaks her mind.

The Lucy Variations The Lucy Variations by Sara Zarr
Lucy's incredible piano talent makes her a sold-out solo artist around the world — and she's only 14. At 16, a tragedy causes her to leave her performances, talent, but most of all her love of music behind. When her 10-year-old brother Gus, the new focus for the family's dream of star piano playing, gets a new piano teacher, Lucy finds herself wanting to return to her keyboard. After her incredible performances and privilege as a solo artist, will she be able to learn how to rekindle her love for the piano for only herself?

The Loser The Loser by Thomas Bernhard
Bernhard's work has been to compared to Beckett and Dostoevsky, but this novel — told in a continuous paragraph — plumbs the depths of musical talent, ambition, and the pain of lacking both. The novel is narrated by the second of two fictional friends of piano virtuoso Glenn Gould. Both friends renounce their dreams of musical stardom in the face of Gould's pre-eminent talent. The first friend commits suicide, the second retreats to obscurity to write this narrative, attempting to understand the decisions each made as a result of Gould's musical genius.

This article was originally published in June 2014, and has been updated for the June 2015 paperback release. Click here to go to this issue.

This article is available to non-members for a limited time. You can also read these articles for free. For full access, become a member today.
Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket: Auntie Poldi and the Sicilian Lions
    Auntie Poldi and the Sicilian Lions
    by Mario Giordano
    Munich matron and self-described worldly sophisticate, Isolde Oberreiter, has decided to retire to a...
  • Book Jacket: Eat the Apple
    Eat the Apple
    by Matt Young
    Truth is stranger than fiction. Matt Young's memoir tackles the space in between truth and ...
  • Book Jacket: Educated
    by Tara Westover
    Tara Westover had the kind of upbringing most of us can only imagine. She was the youngest of seven ...
  • Book Jacket: The Girls in the Picture
    The Girls in the Picture
    by Melanie Benjamin
    Melanie Benjamin's fine historical novel about the relationship between two women in the early ...

First Impressions

  • Book Jacket

    Sometimes I Lie
    by Alice Feeney

    This brilliant psychological thriller asks: Is something a lie if you believe it's the truth?
    Reader Reviews

  • Book Jacket

    The House of Broken Angels
    by Luis Alberto Urrea

    The definitive Mexican-American immigrant story from an acclaimed storyteller.
    Reader Reviews

Win this book!
Win The Balcony

The Balcony
by Jane Delury

A century-spanning novel-in-stories of a French village brimming with compassion, natural beauty, and unmistakable humanity.


Word Play

Solve this clue:

I Y L D W D, Y'll G U W Fleas

and be entered to win..

Books that     

 & enlighten

Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.

Join Today!

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends books that we believe to be best in class. Books that will whisk you to faraway places and times, that will expand your mind and challenge you -- the kinds of books you just can't wait to tell your friends about.