Seth, Vikram "An Equal Music" - 1999
As I had really liked "A Suitable Boy", I wanted to read this book by the same author. The subject is completely different to his other novel. This one tells us the story of a violonist and his problems with love, his job, his parents, but mainly love.
You cannot compare this book at all to his former novel, but it was very good, as well. I don't know much about the life of a musician, you certainly don't hear much about those performing in chamber music quartets but it was very interesting to follow even that part.
From the back cover:
"The author of the international bestseller A Suitable Boy returns with a powerful and deeply romantic tale of two gifted musicians. Michael Holme is a violinist, a member of the successful Maggiore Quartet. He has long been haunted, though, by memories of the pianist he loved and left ten years earlier, Julia McNicholl. Now Julia, married and the mother of a small child, unexpectedly reenters his life and the romance flares up once more.
Against the magical backdrop of Venice and Vienna, the two lovers confront the truth about themselves and their love, about the music that both unites and divides them, and about a devastating secret that Julia must finally reveal. With poetic, evocative writing and a brilliant portrait of the international music scene, An Equal Music confirms Vikram Seth as one of the world's finest and most enticing writers."
If you have read "A Suitable Boy", put your expectations aside and don't compare it. Then it is a very good novel.
I also read "Two Lives", a biography about the author's great-uncle and aunt. A wonderful book.