A message from the author:
London, 1794. Revolution creeps across the channel, coffee houses seethe with gossip and the City is full of upstarts, émigrés and speculators. But even in unruly times, daughters need husbands. For four City men, the question is how to get them.
The daughters. Motherless Alathea, whose charms are grown disturbing, uses the whole of London exactly as she pleases. Harriet, Georgiana, Marianne and Everina are cosseted at home, but home is not always a safe place. As Claude Belladroit, piano-master, remarks, what’s the point of locking the shutters when danger comes through the front door?
In the shadow of Tyburn gibbet, Vittorio Cantabile, exile and instrument-maker, also has a daughter. Born with a deformity her father cannot forgive, Annie is far from cosseted. In her father’s workshop, resentments are fashioned as well as pianofortes, and dreams are smashed without mercy.
Fathers and daughters; mothers and daughters; husbands and wives; girls and boys; the pursued and the pursuing. Whether in gilded drawing room or dusty workshop, when a city is infected with sedition, everything is reflected through a distorting prism of jealousy, revenge and sexual devilry.
‘Alathea returned and sat on Annie’s right. There was music on the stand. Alathea set it aside and chose music from a pile on the floor. Mozart duets? An imperceptible nod from Annie … It was the joy that swept Annie in. …http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iy3y_zf9Ft8
I love this performance – so lively and stylish. I think Alathea and Annie would have loved it too.
I was going to post up more Sedition music today, but this is so lively that I can’t resist. Haydn is perfect for a spring Saturday. I’m gavotting with the hoover. How I love living at a time when my housework partner is Alexander Kobrin, one of the world’s top pianists.
This simple, gentle tune inspired Sedition. How? I don’t know. All I know is that it’s a perfect piece of music, and Alathea knows it, and so does Annie. It links us together: the author and two of her creations. So – here at last, lovely aria.
A little snippet from a splendid long review in Booklist:
“A thumping debut filled with sex, manipulation and a dash of romance. Wickedly dark and provocative, Sedition is a bold reminder that the thirst for power and status remains unquenched over the ages.”
Sedition’s also a Top-10 pick for April, and will be included in the Top-10 e-newsletter.
Thank you, Booklist.
My girls and I are dancing this morning, perhaps to the speedy ones of these, with which Everina tries to impress Monsieur.
This piece of music, Les Barricades Mysterieuse composed by Francois Couperin (1668-1773)will be familiar to many – or perhaps more accurately to few, since few people now go to church, and fewer still to a church with music. Anyhow, Les Barricades will be familiar to many of the few who DO go to church since it’s a favourite to fill the moments when people are shuffling up to communion. My favourite recording is by Angela Hewitt, but that recording is under copyright. So here’s a free offering, played on the harpsichord, and why not!