book review

Nocturne by Andrea Randall and Charles Sheehan-Miles

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It seems like I’ve been lucky so far with the reading choices I’ve had… up until this book. I’m not saying it wasn’t good. I think this was just a very tough read for me.

This is a story about the tumultuous relationship (or lack thereof, at times) between up-and-coming flutist, Savannah Marshall, and her broody once-professor and world-renowned cellist, Gregory Fitzgerald. While Savannah has a natural passion and unbridled talent for music, Gregory is focused more on perfecting the technicalities of his own. But when they come together at a summer music programme, they find that they make beautiful music together. This leads to much complications in their personal lives, as they find that same connection irresistible. Friendships are tested. Careers are risked. Ethics are compromised. But decisions need to be made, and they’re never easy in situations like this.

I feel torn about this review. And if you’re not interested in spoilers, you can stop reading here.

This is one of the rare times that I actually despised the hero. I found him a selfish, self-centered and spineless boy who needed to grow up stat. He was supposed to be the adult here, but for most of the story, he acted like a petulant child. And in doing so, he broke Savannah’s heart way too many times, and even put her into one of the most difficult positions when he asked her if she would have an affair with him.

Up until the very end of the book, I wanted to keep slapping Gregory upside the back of his head for being the idiot that he was. However, as much as I thought he was undeserving of Savannah, I also can’t deny the chemistry between the two of them.

For the record, I do not condone cheating. I’ve always believed that if it’s so easy to disregard a commitment to one person, then it shouldn’t be difficult to end things before embarking on a new relationship. At the same time, when I find chemistry between two people like Savannah and Gregory, it makes it very tough to not root for their love, no matter how many people they hurt. And this is what makes this book a tough read. This book made me feel guilty for wavering on my beliefs.

It’s not packaged into a neat little love story. It’s messy and confusing. And though there are countless other stories of the similar kind, this one felt more real and raw than most of them. So even if I hated Gregory for 90% of the time, I can also admit that the realness of it all is its redeeming factor.

Rating: 3.5 stars

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