Every Note Played – by Lisa Genova


Every Note Played by Lisa Genova

Hardcover: 320 pages

Publisher: Gallery/Scout Press (March 20 2018)

ISBN-13: 978-1476717807

Synopsis: From neuroscientist and New York Times bestselling author of Still Alice comes a powerful exploration of regret, forgiveness, freedom, and what it means to be alive.

An accomplished concert pianist, Richard received standing ovations from audiences all over the world in awe of his rare combination of emotional resonance and flawless technique. Every finger of his hands was a finely calibrated instrument, dancing across the keys and striking each note with exacting precision. That was eight months ago.

Richard now has ALS, and his entire right arm is paralyzed. His fingers are impotent, still, devoid of possibility. The loss of his hand feels like a death, a loss of true love, a divorce—his divorce.

He knows his left arm will go next.

Three years ago, Karina removed their framed wedding picture from the living room wall and hung a mirror there instead. But she still hasn’t moved on. Karina is paralyzed by excuses and fear, stuck in an unfulfilling life as a piano teacher, afraid to pursue the path she abandoned as a young woman, blaming Richard and their failed marriage for all of it.

When Richard becomes increasingly paralyzed and is no longer able to live on his own, Karina becomes his reluctant caretaker. As Richard’s muscles, voice, and breath fade, both he and Karina try to reconcile their past before it’s too late.

Poignant and powerful, Every Note Played is a masterful exploration of redemption and what it means to find peace inside of forgiveness.

* * *

Every Note Played is a breathtaking novel about having ALS and the affect it has on the person and their family and friends. In typical Lisa Genova style, she creates characters that are so real that you forget they are fictional people.

This book offers a really in-depth look into what it is like to suffer from ALS. I found myself drawing similarities to Mitch Albom’s TUESDAY’S WITH MORRIE. Richard, the stories main protagonist, was a famous pianist before ALS took the movement in his right hand and he suffers everyday knowing that it’s just the beginning. Richard’s wife, Karina, has her own struggles as their marriage is barley what someone would consider a marriage. She is now forced into the roll of caretaker as Richards conditions declines.

Their story is one of forgiveness and of loss, told in a way that only Genova can do, with exceptional realities and exquisite writing. Due to the nature of the book, I did find there were times where I had to put the book down and take a break, but that just further exemplifies how outstanding Genova’s writing is; I felt every word she wrote. This is a must read for any and all literary fans.

Rating: 9.5/10

* I received this book in exchange for an honest review from Simon & Schuster Canada*

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