THE VIOLIN MAN by Maureen Brett Hooper

THE VIOLIN MAN

Age Range: 8 - 12
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KIRKUS REVIEW

 A first novel (for publisher as well as author) begins with a promising scenario: In the 1880's, a fictional Italian boy helps the real Luigi Tarisio find a lost Stradivarius. When the itinerant Luigi (whose vocation is discovering these missing treasures) arrives in the village, he's quickly befriended by young Antonio--who introduces Luigi to various neighbors and helps him figure out who might have the instrument, the marvelous tone of which still lingers in a local tale. Unfortunately, the textbook style here combines with stock characters who are prone to remarks like, ``I'm a poor widow...I have nothing but a sad heart.'' There are few details to lend a sense of place or of village life: Antonio's father complains about his daydreaming on page one, but we never discover what he might have been doing instead. ``Midday isn't the time to visit someone''--but why not? The language is clichÇd and sometimes careless: what color is ``tarnished gold''? This harmless mystery does introduce some historical facts; but it's oversimplistic, and Hooper fails to realize its unusual setting. (Fiction. 8-12)

Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 1991
ISBN: 1-878093-79-7
Page count: 70pp
Publisher: Boyds Mills
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 1st, 1991




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