Review: A Thousand Perfect Notes by C.G. Drews

A Thousand Perfect Notes tells the story of a young man who is tortured and abused by his obsessive stage mother. Beck--short for Beethoven--is expected to become a famous concert pianist so that he can carry on a family legacy that was cut short after his once-famous mother suffered a stroke. Unable to play, Beck's mother relocated him from Germany to Australia where he has has spent his childhood forced to practice at the piano for hours at a time. The premise, which is slightly reminiscent in places to the Scott Hicks/Geoffrey Rush film Shine soon veers into YA romance territory when Beck meets August, a free spirited teen who may just help him play his own tune. 

This one was an entertaining read with some well, interesting characters. Beck is the epitome of a downtrodden teen who only wants to be himself, his mother is almost cartoonishly evil in places and his baby sister is surprisingly articulate for a preschooler. As for August, she was certainly quirky and pivotal to the story, she lacked depth and the character came across as underdeveloped. That said, the descriptions of the abuse Beck suffered at the hands of his mother are quite raw, particularly that ending. (Readers would have to have a heart of stone if they didn't feel anything for Beck.) There are some descriptions of cake that were quite pleasurable to read. This one was a bit average for me, but plenty of other readers have reviewed this one favourably. 

Recommended to readers looking for a short, heart wrenching YA read.

This book was read as part of the Aussie Author Challenge 2018


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