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Piano Society Book Club

Discussion in 'General' started by pianolady, Apr 2, 2009.

  1. musicusblau

    musicusblau Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist Trusted Member

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    Thanks, Monica.
    Yes, I hope, we´ll not be a two-man-book-club here. :lol:
     
  2. techneut

    techneut Active Member Piano Society Artist Trusted Member

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    I remember reading my first English book was rather difficult (it was "My Family and other Animals" by Gerald Durrell). I had an uncontrollable urge to consult the dictionary for each word I did not know (and there were a lot, the topic being wildlife). But this is what you must not do - unless not knowing a word makes you lose the line of the story. You'd never get through a book that way. Rather, try to learn by association, as kids do. In many cases, you can guess (part of a) word's meaning from the context. Usually, when a word has appeared a couple of times (and most words do), you get its meaning allright.

    This must have worked, as I have been reading English books ever since, and never had any problems since the first. Not to say I never had to look up an unfamiliar word, it happens occasionally.
     
  3. pianolady

    pianolady Monica Hart, Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist Trusted Member

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    I just heard back from Nathan. He is still in but has not the time this week, but will get to it next week. It really doesn't matter how long we take to read the book.

    I'm asking people directly to join with us too - maybe we can get a few more readers.
     
  4. musicusblau

    musicusblau Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist Trusted Member

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    Juufa72 wrote:
    Thank you for these advices, Julius :D , but somehow Monicas explanation was more concrete.
     
  5. musicusblau

    musicusblau Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist Trusted Member

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    Techneut wrote:
    Thanks for these tips, Chris. :D I think, you are absolutely right with that. I´m always too detailed (it´s my character somehow :roll: ). It makes much more fun, if I get through the story by understanding the main-action. And I think, may be in the way the chance is bigger, that I come through the whole book.
    I´ll continue to read this evening. I´m looking forward to it.
     
  6. musicusblau

    musicusblau Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist Trusted Member

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    Pianolady wrote:
    Fine, the more people read and talk with us the more interesting it will be, I think.
     
  7. juufa72

    juufa72 New Member Piano Society Artist

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    :x
     
  8. musicusblau

    musicusblau Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist Trusted Member

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    Juufa72 wrote:
    Not mad, just funny. :wink:
     
  9. musicusblau

    musicusblau Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist Trusted Member

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    News: I have read the first chapter "Luc". It was very nice and to read works very well, I think. I don´t understand all words and details, but I think, I understand the main-plot.
    This book would be interesting for Chris especially, because there is mentioned a Gaveau-baby-grand. :wink:
    It´s a very interesting and perspective introduction in the theme of piano-brands and piano-building-traditions and -reputations and what marks a "good" piano, I think.
    It´s also a bit mysterious, that the first-person-narrator has to be recommended by another client of this shop. I don´t understand yet why it is like this. But it gives this novel and the whole piano-theme an exclusive atmosphere.
    In every case I´m up to read further...
     
  10. pianolady

    pianolady Monica Hart, Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist Trusted Member

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    I like the way that the store is set up to be a mysterious place, and our main character (have we learned his name yet?) grows more and more curious every day. And when he is finally allowed to enter the ‘back room’, we are as awe-struck as he is when looks upon all the beautiful pianos.

    And it is interesting how Luc behaves as he describes certain pianos. Like some of them are personal friends, and others are simply pieces of wood. You can tell that Luc and the other sort of grouchy older man in the shop will allow one of their pianos to be sold only to the right kind of person. I can’t wait to see which one our character actually gets. He originally thought he would purchase an upright piano, but now he has a sudden yearning to go with a grand. Maybe we will find out in chapter 2 which I will start later today.
     
  11. techneut

    techneut Active Member Piano Society Artist Trusted Member

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    I would not go and buy a book just because it mentions a Gaveau. But the mentioning of the 'back room' brings back some memories. The former pianoshop in Dordrecht, where I often went to play (oh how they must have hated me) had such a back room, several in fact, at the end of a long and darkish corridor, stuffed with all manner of weird and wonderful instruments. That is where I met and courted my Gaveau, before deciding I wanted her for myself.

    So, it seems I can relate to this book even without reading it :wink:
     
  12. musicusblau

    musicusblau Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist Trusted Member

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    Pianolady wrote:
    I like also the way of how the atmosphere of mystery and curiosity narratively is built. I think, we haven´t learned the name of the main-character until now, can´t remember anyway.

    Yes, that´s what makes this book interesting. This kind of a certain, very personal relationship between the man and his piano, there must be a kind of mysterious correspondance between the man and the instrument and that seems to be what the two sellers know. So, it seems also to be a story of (musical) self-finding. I´m also curious, which piano the main-person will get at the end. I think, I´ll continue to read chapter 2 this evening, too.
     
  13. musicusblau

    musicusblau Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist Trusted Member

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    Techneut wrote:
    That´s really interesting. So, you seem to know of this long and darkish corridor and the instruments, which are described in the book. How can you know this, if you haven´t read it?
     
  14. juufa72

    juufa72 New Member Piano Society Artist

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    ...and the plot thickens :twisted:
     
  15. musicusblau

    musicusblau Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist Trusted Member

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    Juufa72 wrote:
    :lol:
     
  16. musicusblau

    musicusblau Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist Trusted Member

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    I´m so happy, because I´m able to read this book in English. :D :D :D For me the re-discovering of the English language is a bit like the re-discovering of the piano-playing for the main-person (what´s his name? I think, his name wasn´t mentioned until now.) I´ve read chapter two now within one hour and I have understood the plot, that´s good, isn´t it? (Woa, I´m proud on myself. 8) )

    So, the first-person narrator has found his Stingl, an old brand from Vienne. Bösendorfer is the only brand, which stayed from this time of great austrian piano brands. So far I´ve learned from this book of piano-building history. One more interesting matter is, that the old Gaveaus (at least those from the nineteenth century) have a weak tuning stability, because their tuning-pins are in a wooden fixation. Does your Gaveau hold firmly it´s tuning, Chris, or has it often to be retuned?

    Luc recommended this baby-grand-Stingl and at first the main-person wasn´t enthused, because he wanted originally have an upright, but more and more he fall in love with this instrument and the mysterious hunch of Luc becomes truth, that this instrument will be the right one for the first-person narrator. For me all that sounds so destiny-like, isn´t it? This book has really much narrative subtlety, because it creates such a mysterious atmosphere of destination and spiry development. An interesting point is, that the first-person-narrator also has changed an important matter of his life in the time he finds his instrument, he has changed his job from a corporate job to an independend writer, which has also a symbolic meaning in his personal development, which his wife expresses well with the words: "Think of it as an investment in personal expression."
    So, I suppose, the process of true self-finding could be the main-theme of this novel.
     
  17. Lukecash

    Lukecash New Member

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    Yes, but do you ever find yourself? I'd say there is a new me and you every day.
     
  18. musicusblau

    musicusblau Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist Trusted Member

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    Lukecash wrote:
    I agree to that, but somehow there are also certain structures in our personality, which we develop with the years and which stay constant, for example like the passion to play piano, the interest for literature and many other things. So, I suppose, the first-person-narrator discovers more and more (again) a certain aspect of his personality (the piano-music), which is important for his self-finding, because it seems to be an important aspect of his personality.
    Thanks for this tought.
     
  19. Lukecash

    Lukecash New Member

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    Wouldn't you say in the end that self fulfillment is appreciating people intently, and finding enough purpose so we that don't go insane? People all have their quirks, but evidently the actualization of a person is when they acknowledge that they take a part in something wonderful. However terrible people are, you find a reason to actually want to wake up in the morning, smile at people who aren't going to smile back. You really never can find who you are, but you poignantly realize what exactly you are. Or i may very well have gone mad already... :shock: Are you a member of the club?
     
  20. pianolady

    pianolady Monica Hart, Administrator Staff Member Piano Society Artist Trusted Member

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    Ok, I have read chapter 2. Yes, I see we are talking about Chris’ Gaveau again. I was hoping our character was going to buy it. I was a little sad when he changed his mind and thought he would go with an upright after all. I was thinking, ‘no, no, don’t do it. Find the room and the money for a grand.’ I was not totally surprised when Luc, with his magical ways, found that Stingle grand for our character (no - we still don't know his name).

    I have not heard of Stingle before, so that’s interesting. And isn’t it funny that in this book, the author says that our character wished he could play Chopin’s Polonaise in A-flat? I used to wish that too. Still do, in fact.

    I also like the way Luc feels about rich people who own great big fancy grands, yet don’t play piano and only have them as a means of displaying their wealth. I have always hated that too. I have some cousins like that. Luc’s thinking is that he feels sorry for the poor piano because it sits there practically lifeless. :(

    On to the next chapter. They are short, so that's good.
     

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