All of Lauren Belfer’s novels are classics. The heroine is gifted a manuscript by her deceased uncle who brought it back from Germany with him after the war. I enjoyed it thoroughly. All of Lauren Belfer’s novels are classics. Belfer’s third novel, recently released AND AFTER THE FIRE breaks new ground as she creates a story that revolves around an original cantata of Johann Sebastian Bach that incorporates the Holocaust, Jewish society and the growing anti-Semitism of 18th, 19th, and 20th century Berlin, the niece of a man haunted by his actions at the end of World War II, and a contemporary debate and mystery surrounding what should be done with the sheet music that turns up after the man who took the cantata’s sheet music after World War II commits suicide. In America, in 2010, his niece, Susanna Kessler, struggles to rebuild her life after experiencing a devastating act of violence. It does not stop there. In Berlin, Germany, in 1783, amid the city’s glittering salons where aristocrats and commoners, Christians and Jews, mingle freely despite simmering anti-Semitism, Sara Itzig Levy, a renowned musician, conceals the manuscript of an anti-Jewish cantata by Johann Sebastian Bach, an unsettling gift to her from Bach’s son, her teacher. Welcome back. There is also another important theme running throughout the novel which concerns the libretto contained within the cantata. Inevitably, i found myself digging deeper into that real-life event as I read After the Fire. The book also has a useful section of Discussion Questions for study and teaching in schools. There are no murder mysteries to resolve as in her first two books, but Belfer's plot is quite suspenseful and will keep you turning the pages, all the while thinking about what you might do should such a document suddenly fall into your own hands. As a literature professor by day, by night I am an avid reader of Lauren Belfer’s novels – she never. Lauren Belfer’s novel A Fierce Radiance was named a Washington Post Best Novel; an NPR Best Mystery; and a New York Times Editors’ Choice. This is the fourth and final book in the Embers and Ashes series. They tease our minds so that we want to pursue further research about music, art, history, science, languages, and literature. Jane Ciabattari The premise is that an unknown Bach cantata has been found. We learn about a young contemporary woman who inherits what might be an original J.S. I love WWII historical fiction in general but I have read so much of it and they all start to blur together. No glossed over or dismissed perching of children in this book, This was a hard book to review. Top subscription boxes – right to your door, © 1996-2020, Amazon.com, Inc. or its affiliates. Refresh and try again. Couldn’t for the life of me figure out the title, but I may be a little dense. A previously unknown manuscript of a cantata by the illustrious Johann Sebastian Bach is found by an American soldier at the end of WWII. See all 6 questions about And After the Fire…, Booklist Best Adult Fiction 2016 (Part 1 of 2), Readers' Most Anticipated Books of December. The book traces the path of this controversial cantata through the days when it was first given to Sara Itzig Levy by her music teacher, Bach’s son, through its present day finding by Henry Sach’s niece, Susanna Kessler. Bach. In Germany after WWII has ended, an American soldier, Henry Sachs, steals a music manuscript resulting in the death of a young girl. As a result, the program had been curtailed. Japan has several orchestras that tour the country only performing Beethoven's Ninth Symphony? The gamekeeper at Hogwarts and a good friend of Harry's, Hagrid is an enormous, caring, hairy man with an inimitable accent and a half-giant heritage. Bach. Bennett's novel plays with its characters' nagging feelings of being incomplete—for the twins without each other; for Jude’s boyfriend, Reese, who is trans and seeks surgery; … However, this one, has a unique perspective in that it is also about Bach and Hensel and Mendolssohn and life in general in the musical community in Germany in the late 1700s/early 1800s. They tease our minds so that we want to pursue further research about music, art, history, science, languages, and literature. Her debut novel, City of Light, was a New York Times bestseller as well as a number one Book Sense pick; a New York Times Notable Book; a Library Journal Best Book; and a Main Selection of the Book-of-the-Month Club. Buckle up and be prepared. I've met the author and I applaud her treatment of anti-Jewish sentiment n classical music! I first read about the boys in Robin Gaby Fisher's articles in the Star Ledger -- the book delves more deeply into the story. I read this book in two multi-hour afternoons, on my front porch, feet up, cats wandering in and out. I was surprised by some of the things I learned about my own religion. I really enjoyed the book and kept listening to Bach as I read it. Start by marking “And After the Fire” as Want to Read: Error rating book. After the Fire is yet another great book written by author, T. K. Chapin. Reading those chapters is a brief glimpse of all that was lost, all the rich cultureal aritfacts, knowledge, and objects, with the growing anti-semitism, and the Holocaust. Suspenseful and moving, After the Fire. Unable to add item to List. This narrative however cleverly takes us slightly out of the compound that Moonbeam, the main character, has grown up in her entire life. In America in 2010, Henry’s niece, Susanna Kessler, struggles to rebuild her life after she experiences a devastating act of violence on the streets of New York City. It's completely understandable that he shuts down and becomes sick both physically and mentally after learning Johnny died from his injuries during the fire and Dally was killed by the police. Belfer’s third novel, recently released AND AFTER THE FIRE. I know very little about musicology, Bach or authentication, so I learned a lot. I highly recommend it. When Time Stopped: A Memoir of My Father's War and What Remains, The Sympathizer: A Novel (Pulitzer Prize for Fiction), Blindspot: A Novel (Random House Reader's Circle), “[Belfer’s] virtuoso novel…epitomizes Faulkner’s epigram that the past is never dead―or even past. AFTER THE FIRE is book four of the Contemporary Christian Romance Series, EMBERS & ASHES. The story follows the discovery of a hidden composition by Bach by the main character when her grandfather kills himself , this opens up a can of worms and we are in the middle of the second WW , this book also follows three different timelines chronicling the life of the composition, along the trip you will find believable and well written ch. We don’t share your credit card details with third-party sellers, and we don’t sell your information to others. is perfect for readers looking for. The overwhelming majority of church leaders had said nothing, however, to help their Jewish neighbors. National Jewish Book Award Winner! Sara's uncle found it at the end of WWII. I'm really surprised that I did not enjoy this book more than I did. How did th, [Sometimes the gaps in time are too much, like at the end. (I had to laugh when I read that part.) Reviewed in the United States on June 17, 2018, This was a fascinating book to read. At the end of the novel, the author documents her extensive research; the historical characters, and the incidents that are related in the story, were historically true. This novel spans several centuries from 1776 to 2010 and unites several individuals who are all connected by a long-hidden manuscript, a cantata by J.S. Directed by Guido Verweyen. When I read the synopsis for this novel it caught my attention for two reasons: Firstly, I’m a musician with a love of both classical music and history. This was a fascinating, well written, well researched book that really kept my attention, even through some parts that were a little too musically historical for me. Although the main character in Belfer’s third novel is a young woman, Susanna Kessler, it would be more accurate to say the book revolves around two entities: Susanna and a long-lost cantata by Johann Sebastian Bach, which Susanna’s uncle took from an abandoned house in Germany while serving as a soldier during World War II. I also enjoyed the time-slip sequences from present day back into previous centuries. The novel is rich with characters and rich with information. In war-ravaged Germany, in 1945, an American soldier takes a souvenir, an old music manuscript, from a seemingly deserted mansion and mistakenly kills the girl who tries to stop him. Enlightening. The New York Times-bestselling author of A Fierce Radiance and City of Light returns with a new powerful and passionate novel—inspired by historical events—about two women, one European and one American, and the mysterious choral masterpiece by Johann Sebastian Bach that c This book was a gift from a friend and I really enjoyed it. It makes me wonder which Mendelssohn wrote the pieces I played on the piano as a teen. Our payment security system encrypts your information during transmission. . I have been a big fan of Lauren Belfer since reading her first historical novel, City of Light. When I read the synopsis for this novel it caught my attention for two reasons: Firstly, I’m a musician with a love of both classical music and history. Bach. But home where? There was a problem loading your book clubs. She receives a phone call that her uncle in Buffalo at the age of 86 took his life. In Berlin, Germany, in 1783, amid the city’s glittering salons where aristocrats and commoners, Christians and Jews, mingle freely, Sara Itzig Levy, a renowned musician, conceals the score of an anti-Jewish masterpiece by Johann Sebastian Bach, an unsettling gift to her from Bach’s son, her teacher. Timeless. Also in the Bible, in The Book of Kings (1:18:12). Lauren Belfer is a pro at historical fiction. The only reason that I didn't give this book 5 stars was because I believe that by the last 80 pages , the composition took a bench seat and wasn't talked as much anymore , and that to me was surprising since I though that the book would be about that. IN 1933, 4675 JEWS LIVED IN DRESDEN. A teen raised in an isolated religious cult deals with the aftermath of the fire that destroyed her community. Truly loved it. The manuscript is a lost cantata by none other than Johann Sebastian Bach. I found And After the Fire very difficult to put down. However at times the book seemed heavy on 'telling' and bogged. However, this one, has a unique perspective in that it is also about Bach and Hensel and Mendolssohn and life in general in the musical community in Germany in the late 1700s/early 1800s. There is some prejudice against Jews, but it is mostly non-problematic. This shopping feature will continue to load items when the Enter key is pressed. She alternates the story smoothly between a contemporary woman in New York, and a Jewish family in Germany, following several generations, beginning in the mid 1700's. This is an excellent story about an unknown Bach cantata that Susanna Kessler finds upon her uncle's death. The lyrics contain violent Anti-Semitic words. But calling it that and comparing it to the light and fluffy (though still gorgeous and excellent) books of that genre does After the Fire a huge dis-service. After viewing product detail pages, look here to find an easy way to navigate back to pages you are interested in. Belfer’s novels take us to different periods in history, to different continents. The plot entails two converging chronological time lines, one starting with J.S. And along the way there's a love triangle. Bach's real-life music-teacher son and his harpsichord student, the later salon hostess, Sara Itzig Levy, and coming down the line through a series of generations entrusted to protect a "lost," potentially valuable and historically important, but scurrilously anti-Semitic, Bach cantata until it is taken at the end of WW II by a US soldier who later leaves it to his niece, Susanna Kessler, who in the second, and current time line, has to decide what to do with it. After the Fire, a Still Small Voice is the first novel by prize-winning Australian author, Evie Wyld. This is a well-conceived, well-researched fantasy novel, peppered with enough factual information to make it plausible. Ponder. WE ASK FOR FORGIVENESS.”, “the Nazis’ so-called euthanasia program, the widespread murder of the disabled. She lives in New York City. This is AND AFTER THE FIRE in a nutshell. Sara Itzig Levy is a most sought-after hostess, with her gracious home, expertly manicured lawns and her musical talent on the harpsichord. These is an undercurrent of the approaching doom woven into the story, in skilled and subtle ways. Hoping my husband will love it as much as I did! While struggling to overcame the impacts of violence in her own life, wonders about the history of this manuscript and how it arrived into her uncle's hands, so hires an experienced professor to confirm the content determine any possible value. After the Fire shares the story of two friends burned in the fire and is an amazing example of the triumph of the human spirit. Please try your request again later. But home where? The story and the construction of the book left a lot to be desired. Gd tells Elijah to stand on the mountain, then there is an earthquake and a fire, then "after the fire" Gd was there, this serves as a returning point for the Jewish people to return to Gd and the ways of the convenant. A letter with it explains that her uncle, a soldier during WWII, had discovered the document in an abandoned mansion in Germany. I loved the way Lauren Belfer handles difficult topics in history and the present. After the white men leave, Dana calls out “Alice,” and the young girl looks in her direction. Interweaving the stories of Susanna and Sara, and their families, And After the Fire traverses more than two hundred years of history, seamlessly melding past and present, real and imagined. There was an error retrieving your Wish Lists. This book, informed by deep knowledge about J.S. I knew nothing about this topic so I really found it fascinating, especially the life of Sarah Levy, the strong matriarch, and incredibly talented Fanny Mendolssohn. Free UK p&p over £10, online orders only. A fascinating read illuminating a world where classical music was regularly performed in homes and concert halls. After the Fire then went through several personnel changes before settling on Banks, guitarist and vocalist Andy Piercy, bassist Nick Battle, and drummer Ivor Twydell. We view the horror of the Nazi persecution and extermination of Jewish families because not only are those events an integral part of Jewish history but are background to this story. Please try again. I knew nothing about this topic so I really found it fascinating, especially the life of Sarah Levy, the strong matriarch, and incredibly talen. Although originally planned for publication after the completion of A Song of Ice and Fire, Martin revealed his intent to publish the history in two volumes after the material had grown too large. AND AFTER THE FIRE tells parallel stories - the structure is brilliant. Interweaving the stories of Susanna and Sara, and their families, And After the Fire traverses over two hundred years of history, from the eighteenth century through the Holocaust and into today, seamlessly melding past and present, real and imagined. Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read. This book touched on a lot of really deep issues and there were so many phrases I highlighted because they made me think and reconsider what I know and believe. Filled with history, gorgeous descriptions of music, and people both real and imagined. Washington Independent Review of Books. Composing, seeking outlets for their creativity. National Jewish Book Award Winner! To Build a Fire Characters Next. But at times the book seemed like a diatribe from the author and I lost empathy for the main character, Susanna because she was overshadowed by the author's voice. Firefighter Micah Freeman is the pillar of faith at fire station #9. This was a good book, it had a lot of what I usually like. Susanna finds the old music manuscript with particularly violent song letters against Jews, while cleaning up her uncle's house after his death. Fire & Blood is a fantasy book by American writer George R. R. Martin.It tells the history of House Targaryen, a family from his series A Song of Ice and Fire. He was drawn to records of surviving children’s recovery. Hill has researched the Waco siege of 1993. The historical sections held my attention more raptly than the comtemporary, although I enjoyed both. Very interesting book, bit lacking in drama, Reviewed in the United States on November 9, 2020. Susanna and Sara’s storylines inevitably merge, across centuries and continents and gathering suspense. And After the Fire is her most masterful yet. It calls up Toni Morrison’s The Bluest Eye, the book's 50-year-old antecedent. There's a problem loading this menu right now. (I had to laugh when I read that part.) Something went wrong. His latest novel, After The Fire, won the 2018 YA Book Prize, was shortlisted for the Carnegie Medal and selected for the Zoella Book Club, and received widespread critical acclaim. The novel proceeds alternating the historical haccounting of how the work has been kept secret for all these years with the present day investigation concerning if it is authentic and, if so, who it belonged to. A previously unknown manuscript of a cantata by the illustrious Johann Sebastian Bach is found by an American soldier at the end of WWII. Finely written historical fiction layered with richly detailed characters and moral complexity. Both novels exhibit Belfer’s capacity to intertwine fictional and non-fictional characters that create historical realism and accuracy. A story that spans three generations, it is told from the perspective of Frank, who, in the present day, is fleeing behaviour he is ashamed of; and of Leon, decades earlier, forced to follow in his father’s footsteps. Keyboard player Peter Banks originally formed the band in 1972 in London, England. Be sure to read the author's notes at the end and listen to the playlist she created on Spotify that includes the music feature in the novel. 4.3 stars actually. cult books and stories; young adult historical fiction ; binge-worthy teen thrillers; an intense, ripped-from-the-headlines plot; compulsively readable books that keep you hooked until the very end; Praise for After the Fire: I admire the author for all the research she's done, and her almost humble attitude to the subject. “Between some of the lines of music, words had been written, hastily” as the person writing them was in a haste. Summary: The Fire, Part 4 Dana helps bring Alice’s mother to consciousness and then tells her that she is a … Lauren Belfer’s deeply researched, evocative, and compelling narrative resonates with emotion and immediacy. Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. The man. His description of the plot reflected and drew upon the infamous Waco siege in Texas in the 1990s. This historical novel moves back and forth between the 1700’s to 1940’s to the present day. The author Lauren Belfer has written two excellent works of historical fiction; A FIERCE RADIANCE and THE CITY OF LIGHT. Just a moment while we sign you in to your Goodreads account. The story shifts between the past and present as the sheet music passes from one person to another and ended up in postwar Germany. Inspirational romance stories full of faith, hope and love that will leave you feeling inspired. When Susanna Kessler's uncle dies, she discovers a manuscript in his piano bench which appears to be a composition by Johann Sebastian Bach. He brings it back to the states and proceeds to will it to the safekeeping of his niece Susanna. This story illuminates the lives of wealthy members of a cultured and accomplished European Jewish community in the 1800's and traces the story of a missing, inflammatory piece of Bachs work into modern times. I was intrigued to the point of finding myself listening to Bach and I now have an appreciation for his ethereal music. If you like serious historical fiction, I predict you will fully enjoy And After the Fire, which is clearly the equal, if not even better, than her first book. Early career. He has… Please try again. So much emotions and feelings packed into this novel! We Have Always Lived in the Castle study guide contains a biography of Shirley Jackson, literature essays, quiz questions, major themes, characters, and a full summary and analysis. And I found her treatment of antisemitism important. Still puzzled about the title.......... Any suggestions??????????? As she researches the manuscript she meets Dan Eckhardt a professor and Bach expert and Scott Sittenfeld who is also a Bach specialist. Both center on murders related to important scientific discoveries, one deals with hydroelectric power outside Buffalo, and the other the development of penicillin during World War II. [Sometimes the gaps in time are too much, like at the end. The manuscript is a lost cantata by none other than Johann Sebastian Bach. To see what your friends thought of this book, I would say that the Holocaust could be viewed as "the fire" here. This book was a gift from a friend and I really enjoyed it. His age and other physical details included are not provided. How did they resolve things exactly‽. Although this book is a little confusing at first, as Moonbeam reveals more and more about the compound and cult before and after the fire, the story becomes more clear. Beethoven. The novel proceeds alternating the historical haccounting of how the work has been kept secret for all th. IN 1945 IT WAS 70. She becomes determined to discover what it is and to return it to its rightful owner, a journey that will challenge her preconceptions about herself and her family’s history—and also offer her an opportunity to finally make peace with the past. Nothing especially detailed sexually - a couple of dainty sentences in the second half of the book, and there is a relatively mild description of a rape in the first half, so CW for sexual violence. Beautiful writing, engaging characters, page turning story lines. The writer's research is admirable, and the reference list and discography are perfect for my taste. I read this book on a cruise ship last fall ... and left it behind for the ship library. I COULD NOT BE STOPPED. WE DID NOT RECOGNIZE THEM AS OUR BROTHERS AND SISTERS. However, he based the story of After The Fire on real events. Bring your club to Amazon Book Clubs, start a new book club and invite your friends to join, or find a club that’s right for you for free. Educational. Captivating and illuminating storytelling, Reviewed in the United States on April 8, 2017. The novel swells with life’s great themes―love and death, family and faith ―and the insistent, dark music of loss.” (. I love WWII historical fiction in general but I have read so much of it and they all start to blur together. It does not stop there. I can't wait to read Lauren Belfer's other books (expect to purchase them, as well as this one, which I accessed via Kindle, in hardback) and I look forward to seeing her future endeavors. We work hard to protect your security and privacy. I was captivated by After the Fire and have already recommended it to other music lovers. I thoroughly enjoyed the story and I learned some unexpected things about music, religion, and late 18th century Europe. Secondly, my husband’s family went through a similar process as Susanna about twenty years ago when they discovered an original Haydn manuscript that had been in their family for several generations – even down to taking it to an expert in a plastic bag! Susanna and Dan don't know how to make their relationship work and then next thing we know there's a subtle reference to her going home to him. Harper Perennial; Reprint edition (May 2, 2017), Reviewed in the United States on January 14, 2017. The content of the cantata is inflammatory and is hidden by each generation. Reviewed in the United States on December 12, 2016. NYC 2010, Susanna Kessler works for the Barstow Family Foundation. J.S Bach was hugely influential and his legacy continues to be treasured and honoured world wide. Fire & Blood is a complete history of House Targaryen written by George R. R. Martin. Both novels exhibit Belfer’s capacity to intertwine fictional and non-fictional characters that create historical realism and accuracy. She’s determined to discover what it is and to return it to its rightful owner, a journey that will challenge her preconceptions about herself and her family’s history—and also offer her an opportunity finally to make peace with the past. She is a strange and disturbing mai Moonbeam was a member of the Lord's Legion cult until a fire … And I found her treatment of antisemitism important. Music pulses through this rich tale of love, morality, and a lost cantata…. The story follows the discovery of a hidden composition by Bach by the main character when her grandfather kills himself , this opens up a can of worms and we are in the middle of the second WW , this book also follows three different timelines chronicling the life of the composition, along the trip you will find believable and well written characters. The man. A sad chapter in 20th century history. But, these days, movies seem to be more popular than books, so I think it's fair to shine some light on some events that went down in the books that were never shown in the movie. At his house, she finds a note from him attached to sheets of music, which he took from a Jewish house in Weimer, when he was stationed as translator in American-Occupied Germany in 1945. Let us know what’s wrong with this preview of, Published That’s Malala Yousafzai, Pakistani human rights... AND AFTER THE FIRE has received the inaugural Book Club Award of the 2016 National Jewish Book Awards. I appreciated the author's careful research and obvious love of music. I highly recommend this book especially for people who enjoy classical music or perhaps any music scholar (although much of the detail of the music was indecipherable to me I understand the need to be so exacting with the accuracy & it did not in any way detract from my enjoyment of the book), Reviewed in the United States on November 15, 2016. Introduction. Prime members enjoy FREE Delivery and exclusive access to music, movies, TV shows, original audio series, and Kindle books. Hill is clear that After The Fire is a fiction. Not my usual genre, but I couldn’t put it down! I would have liked to know more about how the protagonist's personal life was going to play out at the end. Hagrid. WE WERE SILENT AS THEIR HOUSES OF WORSHIP BLAZED . This is wonderful book which contains a historic mystery, some romance and sadness. This story is about much more than WWII and the holocaust. He brings it back to the states and proceeds to will it to the safekeeping of his niece Susanna. Rachel Walling Appearances: The Poet (1996) Very well written. This is probably not a book I would have ever picked, if not for book club. In Germany after WWII has ended, an American soldier, Henry Sachs, steals a music manuscript resulting in the death of a young girl. Timeless. Historical background, musical history , historical artifacts and museums . After the fire By: Hannah Constantino written by: Becky Citra how characters changed Sharlene Austin used to be nice , and fun now mean and independent always used to talk to Alice became more closer to Melissa and Cody payed more attention to Melissa and her brother showed and She is a writer of acclaim, and the subject matter, or so I thought, is right up my alley. I was touched by how the author portrayed a Lutheran minister and. I found the subject matter intriguing, enjoyed getting glimpses into 18th and 19th century lives of beloved musicians and the mystery behind a (fictional) never-before-discovered Bach manuscript. Salons are being held with intimate music performance as the main attraction. Composers were appreciated and their works were discussed with love, knowledge and interest. This is a complicated book. The content of the cantata is inflammatory a. It turned out to be a hitherto unknown cantata by Bach -- but the words are harsh and awfully anti-Jewish. To order a copy for £15.29 (RRP £17.99) go to bookshop.theguardian.com or call 0330 333 6846. After the Fire is published by Harvill Secker. As she researches the manuscript she meets Dan Eckhardt a professor and Bach expert and Scott Sittenfeld who is also a Bach specialist. I liked that every character (except the Professor/Attorney shark) had a moral crisis or awakening after the secret, hidden Cantata came into the light. The narration alternates between present day as Susanna traces its journey, and the past -- starting in 1783 -- when Sara Levy is entrusted with it. Ce roman constitue une extraordinaire fresque historique sur les musiciens de la période baroque ainsi que sur une partie de l'. loosely bases his story on the 1993 standoff between the Branch Davidians of Waco, Texas, and federal agents.Seventeen-year-old Moonbeam has been raised from toddlerhood in the Holy Church of the Lord’s Legion, an arid, closed compound … This book is just wonderful! The author Lauren Belfer has written two excellent works of historical fiction; A FIERCE RADIANCE and THE CITY OF LIGHT. The historical sections held my attention more raptly than t. After the Fire combines music history, especially in regard to the music of Bach, with the history of Jewish culture in Germany, for about 150 years prior to WWII. Sara Levy who receives the Bach cantata from her piano teacher Bach 's son contains a historic mystery, romance... Learned about my own religion delightfully complex piece of historical fiction ; a FIERCE RADIANCE and the Holocaust two afternoons... 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