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Posted January 29, 2009
Sentimental and sweet...
The Recital is a lower key story than I usually read, but very touching and sweet. The more I got to know the characters the more I liked them. The hero in the story was a tender hearted farmer and the heroine was a big city musician who was in her element teaching students at Gaylord in Chicago. The story started out pretty hilarious with the heroine, Joan, burning a meal for her sweetheart. Then came marriage and a move. I enjoyed experiencing the adjustments the older couple had to make as newleyweds. Some parts were sweet, yet flirtatious and fun. Other sections of the story were sentimental and spirited, especially their sparring on occasion. Overall, I grew to care about the characters so much that I got all choked up at the end. What a gripping story. It made me think about life, love, and enjoying the moment. I'm glad I stuck with this novel and highly recommend it.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted August 4, 2006
Music For The Mind
The Recital By: Robert Elmer Some books are read to absorb, others to study and still others for times of quiet. The book The Recital by Robert Elmer is like treating yourself to a recital for your mind. When you open the front cover and begin to read, time will pass quickly and you will not want to put it down. Joan Horton and Gerrit Appledoorn are two very different people with very different backgrounds and a very strong love for each other. Somewhere in the pages of the book they become real, believable people in your mind. Like bass notes blend with treble notes and form a beautiful composition, their lives blend. Joan is a concert pianist in a small Dutch town in Washington state. Gerrit is a retired farmer. The two travel a journey into marriage that leads them from the comfortable community Gerrit knows to the city life in Chicago that Joan loves. Joan learns the depth of a man¿s heart when he is devoted to his wife. Gerrit learns when you spend too much time looking to the past you may miss the beauty of the present. Through the laughter, tears, heartaches and joys they learn the true meaning of cleaving to one another. This is a love story, a life story. It will make you laugh and cry. The characters captivate and drive you forward. When the last page is turned and the book is closed, your heart hears the recital and you will need to hug someone you love.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted May 3, 2006
The Baby Boomer generation is changing the definition of retirement. Younger at heart than their parents at the same age, fifty is the new thirty, and love can be just as exciting the second time around. And it comes with its own set of difficulties, including new careers. Robert Elmer serves up a love story with a side helping of humor in this delightful tale of a second marriage as Gerrit and Joan explore their differences and similarities. I laughed at their 'mixed marriage' discussions, comparing his Dutch Reformed to her fundamentalist Nazarene as they lobbed scripture-grenades at each other. But I was most impressed by Elmer's deep understanding of Joan and her psyche. There wasn't a moment in this novel where I didn't believe her thoughts and feelings. His distinct voice for each character remained true throughout the book. His characters are flawed, real people who will steal your heart as they put off their pasts and go forward, often with disastrous results. I didn't read The Duet, and I'll go back and do so, but it's not necessary to fully enjoy this book. Funny and tender, this is a definite recommended read.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted December 9, 2008
An intriguing realistic relationship drama
Widower farmer Gerrit Appledorn and New York Gaylord School of Music teacher and concert pianist Joan Marie Horton have fallen in love (see THE DUET) in his hometown of Van Dalen, Washington. They met when, to earn money while spending time with her pregnant daughter, Joan Marie fills in for piano teacher Linda Klopstra, who is in Romania for a year his granddaughter is one of her students. They marry, but she has opportunities to teach piano in Chicago.----------- Gerrit is a farm boy all his life the big city is not for him, but he also believes he must not stifle Joan¿s prospects in Chicago in fact he feels he must encourage her. Will geographic differences end the loving relationship between the big city musician and the rural farmer or can they find a compromise?------------- The sequel to the virtuoso THE DUET, THE RECITAL is an intriguing realistic relationship drama that focuses on whether love is enough when the participants come from lifestyles that are 180 degrees apart. The issue centers on whether compromise means one or both give up their essence as consensus is out of reach. Fans of character studies with no love s will conquer all answer will appreciate Robert Elmer¿s deep look at opposites attract once the couple moves past the glamour.--------- Harriet KlausnerWas this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.