Saturday, January 2, 2010

Share-A-Book Saturday (18)

This is something I found over on Just Another Book Addict =), and I thought I'd do my own. There are so many great books out there that get overlooked (especially if they've been out for a while)!

Every Saturday, you share (recommend) a book, preferably one that you haven't reviewed yet. It's just a way to get other books out into the blogging world. This is NOT a review.

Today I'm going to recommend The Glass Harmonica by Louise Marley.

Eilish Eam is an orphan and street musician, living in 1761, London. She survives on pennies and applause, and nothing more. Until the night Benjamin Franklin stops to listen, awe-struck by her gift - and with plans for her future...

Erin Rushton is a classical musician living in 2018, Seattle. She stands in the orchestra, consumed by the music - and haunted by visions of a young girl from a different time, who needs her help... (Product description from

This book is a bit difficult to categorize. It's both dystopian fiction and historical fiction. I found the glass harmonica itself fascinating. It was an actual instrument, though it has since fallen out of favour.

As for the story itself, it's one of those narratives that jumps back and forth between two time periods. In the 1700s we have Eilish, who plays Benjamin Franklin's armonica and becomes friends with Marianne Davies (the first person to publicly perform on the glass harmonica). In the 21st century we have Erin, a musical prodigy who plays the eponymous instrument, and her wheelchair-bound brother, Charlie, who will do just about anything to walk again. While the two parallel stories never come together that well, the book as a whole is interesting and worth reading, even if all you get out of it is some knowledge of this little-known musical invention.


  1. I LOVE this book!
    I am a street musician myself (I play the musical saw in the NYC subway), and I also play glasses (though not on the street), so I totally relate to this book and I find that the author did a fantastic job describing both the street playing scenes and the sound of the glasses. She obviously did her research!

    All the best,

    Saw Lady

  2. Wow. Sounds good. I've never heard of it before. Thanks for the recommendation.