A standalone novel.
Genre: Young Adult – Contemporary
Target Audience: 12+
Rating: B- (72%)
Goodreads Rating: 4/5
An emotionally charged story of music, abuse and, ultimately, hope.
Beck hates his life. He hates his violent mother. He hates his home. Most of all, he hates the piano that his mother forces him to play hour after hour, day after day. He will never play as she did before illness ended her career and left her bitter and broken. But Beck is too scared to stand up to his mother, and tell her his true passion, which is composing his own music – because the least suggestion of rebellion on his part ends in violence.
When Beck meets August, a girl full of life, energy and laughter, love begins to awaken within him and he glimpses a way to escape his painful existence. But dare he reach for it?
“What he wants most in the world is to cut off his own hands.” – A Thousand Perfect Notes, C.G. Drews.
This is one of the best first lines I have read in a really long time. It’s been a while since a book had me hook, line and sinker on the first line alone. I wanted to know so much more on why he wanted his hands gone, what had caused this fascination? Such an intriguing concept for someone like me, who has a small addiction to mental health novels.
This concept is a reused idea, but so are most. This isn’t a bad thing. It’s an abuse story, about a mother and a son. Beck, has a love for his sister and a hatred for the music his mother insists he plays. It’s very good. There’s only three or four locations in this novel, and I’m still unsure whether I’m a fan of that fact or not. It felt repetitive in a way, but then again, maybe that was the point?
I felt as if the characterisation could have gone more in depth. I didn’t learn a whole lot about who August is, or about her family. I feel as if I don’t really know her. Beck is not as much of a mystery, his life lay open in our palms but, I know nothing of his little sister, except that she loves to swear and can cause a scene if need be. I loved her spark of a personality. It was also interesting to have German in this novel, a language I used to love in my teen years.
Beck evolved in this book, he did. I can’t say anything for the other characters. It felt like C.G concentrated all her efforts of making Beck the best he could be but forgot about improving on the rest. That’s just a speculation and it could be incredibly wrong, it’s just an observation I’ve made.
It honestly was a good novel. Despite my complaints, I read it in one sitting. It just had some flaws, but all books do. It’s incredible for a debut and I can’t wait for her next one! So you should read it, and love it! 😜
The break down of my rating:
Style & Tone: 7/10
Enjoyment Factor: 8/10