Review: The Piano Maker ISBN 9780771071287

Review: The Piano Maker ISBN 9780771071287

Title: The Piano Maker
Author: Kurt Palka
ISBN: 9780771071287
Price: $22.95
Publisher: McLelland & Stuart

Review by Bobbi Zahra

Kurt Palka’s storytelling has been compared – with good reason – to both Irene Nemirovsky and Bernhard Schlink. The career journalist and occasional filmmaker has published six novels, most of which are out of print (thanks in part to a rather large gap between his earlier novels and his present work).

Here, he tells two stories, one with some fairly improbable elements (a French gentlewoman learns to lead a team of sled dogs to go on a treasure hunt with an opportunistic thief who would like to be – but is not – her lover).
His second tale, a story of the same woman, Hélène Giroux, involves her journey to small-town Nova Scotia from Montréal (where she fled with her daughter after World War II), where she hopes finally to find some measure of peace.

The story of the dog team is riveting, and Palka paints a vivid picture of challenge that too quickly turns to desperation.

Palka’s story of his protagonist’s eventual move to Nova Scotia is equally gripping, but in a more subtle way. He captures many of the nuances of life in a very small town and gives readers another reason to curl up with a good book.

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Livres Trois Canons

Livres neufs et usagés en anglais à Québec. Livres Trois Canons, Place Naviles, 3400-SS2, chemin des Quatre-Bourgeois, Québec (Québec) G1W 2L3 Tél: (418) 204-4325 www.livrestroiscanons.com info @ livrestroiscanons.com