Customer Reviews for

Mozart's Sister

Average Rating 4
( 30 )
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  • Posted December 9, 2008

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    a reviewer

    Prodded by their father Leopold and trained since birth to perform, by 1762, twelve years old Nannerl Mozart and her seven years old brother Wolfgang play in public for the first time. Thirty years later Wolfgang is dead not too long after Leopold passed away while Nannerl reflects back on their lives wondering if they started even earlier whether his precocious talent would have still overwhelmed her superb skills. Their late father believed this is so as Wolfgang got all the praise from royal patrons and especially from their dad. Though she dreams of performing to regal accolades and settles pragmatically in marriage to Johann, she looks back at what might have been.------------- This is a terrific biographical fiction of Nannerl Mozart, who apparently was a very talented musician, but never received any acclaim from patrons or her parents because she performed for the most part along side her superstar brother. The story line brings to life late eighteenth century musical Vienna from a different perspective as readers observe how Nannerl deals with a talented precocious highly acclaimed younger brother though some say she rivaled him in performing skills. This is a winner as readers learn the pressures on females to conform while their artistic male siblings can do almost anything and like Nannerl (at least in this novel) wonder what if. Nancy Moser provides a powerful insightful tale that has a modern day message of encouraging the young to be all that they can be.--------------- Harriet Klausner

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 31, 2012

    WOULD RECOMMEND THIS BOOK!! Great story and written from Mozart

    WOULD RECOMMEND THIS BOOK!!
    Great story and written from Mozart sister's viewpoint. Makes me appreciate the opportunities women have today that definitely were not available in the past.

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  • Posted February 11, 2012

    loved it

    loved it

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  • Posted August 25, 2011

    Really enjoyed this!!

    This book was very enjoyable to read. The story moved along at a pace that kept me wanting to continue reading it without my typical going back and forth between two books. While the book is mainly fiction, as you read, you can actually picture the characters going thru these events and dealing with the feelings portrayed. You feel for Nannerl as the story progresses. She has so much talent, maybe even more than her brother, but is cast aside for one reason: she is female! What a waste. When I was finished, I felt like the story ended well, no wondering "what if?" or "what happened to?". Just a very satisfying read!

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  • Posted May 14, 2011

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    Well written and nicely done

    I thought this was an interesting point of view to see Mozart from a different angle. (In fact, I didn't even know he had a sister). This book was really good when it came to historical accuracy and it was well written. I really did like Nannerl, and really did sympathize with her once her father started pushing her aside and focus more on Wolfgang.

    You could really see the extreme differences on how each gender was treated in this book. It's so blatantly different and the gap is so wide especially when Wolfgang and his father go on tour while Nannerl and her mother stay at home. It just did not seem fair as Nannerl is just as talented and gifted with music as Wolfgang but because she's female she's expected to give those talents up to get married, and have children. It's these kinds of injustices that made me angry in the book. It felt that such wonderful talent was wasted and I could not help but get even more angry at her father for pushing her aside, and at her mother for not doing anything at all. However, it was like that back then, so it's hard to get used to such gender disparity.

    I have to admit I hated her father at first. He was the type of parent that lived through their kids and profited from it. However I reserved most of my anger towards Wolfgang. Oh my. What a spoiled piece of...well you get the idea. His ego was as big as the moon (his father helped a lot with that) and he treated the rest of his family like dirt. Once he got even more famous, he suddenly became 'too good' to be with his family to visit. What a horrid little creature he was in this book! Towards the ending of the novel he just got worse. Their father on the other hand, I started taking a liking to him. It seemed he finally realized Wolfgang was a jerk after all and treated Nannerl much better.

    The writing was excellent throughout the novel, although the plot was a bit slow paced. Nannerl's faith is admirable yet you wonder if it's possible for her to just keep relying on her faith for the answer, what if she had decided to take matters into her own hands? perhaps the plot would have a huge change but it might have made it a little more interesting. I really did like the characters in this book despite Wolfgang being a twit. Everyone was exceptionally well written and were well developed throughout the story.

    This was a well written historically accurate novel seeing a famous composer through a different set of eyes; namely his sister. It's a different point of view and despite the slow moving plot, the characters are well written and you'll find yourself engrossed in this book. It's well worth the read.

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  • Posted October 26, 2010

    Great Story!

    I loved the insight into the life of not just Mozart, but his family as well. If you love historical fiction, this is a book for you!

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  • Posted February 22, 2010

    Mozart's Sister is intriguing and interesting.

    This is a wonderful historical fiction book. The interest comes from two areas: the many letters that had been preserved between the family members so actual conversations were not hard to create and give it authenticity; the other interest comes from reading the customs and zeitgeist of that time in history.

    Many might find it difficult to read because they may feel no patience with the the protagonist as she continually defers to the various authorities in her life: her father, the local political leaders who did yield a great deal of influence, her "role" as a woman defined by the social structure of that century. It is a fact based story and interesting to read about another era, especially to read WHY Mozart's sister did the things she did.

    Motivation is a great subject for book club discussions, along with discussion of duty to family, to God, to different social structures in which we find ourselves. Discussions can lead to how are we the same, as well as different, than Nannerl. It seems that some things never change, even over hundreds of years. Which things? What motivates us today? How are we (as women) held back today, just as she was held back by strong societal and familial and religious structure? Nannerl had a great sense of duty and practicality about her, and a sense of understanding that things could have been worse. How can we use those very attitudes positively in our lives today? Can we find satisfaction in a life well lived, even if it isn't the life we would have purposefully chosen for ourselves? If we can't overcome circumstances, WHAT can we do?

    This isn't a book to imagine yourself in, but rather to observe and learn from. It is a book that may well grow on you as the main chacacter grows up and narrates in the first person. I am glad that I didn't live in that time period, but I did enjoy the story, beautifully written, about that time.

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  • Posted January 29, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Mozart: The Untold Story

    Have you seen the movie Amadeus? It is one of the best historical movies I have ever seen. But interestingly, there is no mention (at least that I can remember) of Mozart's sister. Therefore reading this book was like stumbling on a long lost diary. This book is wonderfully written, rich in detail and description. I could see myself visiting all the palaces and different cities with the Mozart family. This would have been sibling rivalry at its finest. I totally sided with Nannerl throughout the whole book. Her brother made it very difficult for her to be happy with her life. Everything that she wanted had to be put aside to help her brother become famous. I really thought it was sad that she could not do what her brother did simply because she was a girl. The unfairness of everything for Nannerl is just painful. I also really felt sorry for her mother who had to sacrifice everything for her son and husband. What I liked about the book was that even though Nannerl had to show her love and support for her brother, we also can see how she struggled with having total allegiance with him. Reading about how she was mad and angry with the men in her life made her seem like a real person. Nancy Moser has written an excellent work of historical fiction. Between this book and Just Jane, she has proven herself to be an outstanding name in this genre. I would love to see this book made into a movie. Highly recommended for music and history fans.

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  • Posted January 29, 2009

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    Wonderfully written and deeply satisfying fiction...

    The opening scene pulled me into the story, whetting my appetite for more. I thought the author's use of different words from music composition to describe each stage of Nannerl's life incredibly genius. The author's attention to culture and detail created a fascination in me for that era. I was there. I also found the Mozart family's eccentricities interesting. As the story continued I found myself empathizing with Nannerl. A few times I wish she'd made better choices for herself, but since this was based on her actual life, the author didn't have much liberty there. I thoroughly enjoyed being drawn into that portion of European history with all of its sad realities. More people died than lived, especially children and infants. And the horrid practices of medical science at the time made me cringe as I read about them. I appreciated the author's obvious research into the way things were for women in the late 18th century. My heart ached for Nannerl as she continued to be the obedient child despite the consequences. I loved her epiphany when she realized that Wolfie did what he wanted and still managed to do well with his life, and she denied herself her own desires and wishes only to be disappointed in the end. I ached for her loss of love, her desire to please her family at her own expense, yet I found it very realistic. The author made me care about this woman born so long ago. At first I wasn't sure I'd like the ending because of circumstances I shall not mention or it would be a spoiler, but let me just say that I ended up feeling good about the way the author concluded the story of Nannerl Mozart's life. That made me feel much better when I closed the book. I could not have made some of the sacrifices Nannerl made and applaud the author for bringing insight into the times Nannerl was forced to live in. Wonderful story, heartwrenching on several occasions, but thoroughly enjoyable. I adored every page and am thoroughly impressed with the author's use of the first person point of view. I often failed to notice and felt as if I were the heroine in the story. For that I give the author a hearty, bravo!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 23, 2006

    Beautiful and sensitive historical novel.

    A very enligthning book based on historical records and extremely well written.

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