Motherless Child

Motherless Child

by Marianne Langner Zeitlin


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In her third novel Motherless Child , Marianne Langner Zeitlin explores the world of classical music, where powerful managers can make—and break—the careers of aspiring artists. The book opens with Elizabeth Guaragna, under an assumed name, taking a job in the new agency of famed music impresario Alfred Rossiter, a man she was raised to despise. She wants to glimpse the man who had destroyed her father's piano career and family life years earlier, when he took Elizabeth's mother as his lover.

As Elizabeth is given opportunities to exercise her artistic judgment in her new job, she becomes involved in the business itself, despite her continuing misgivings. Soon she meets George Wentworth, who is writing a biography of Rossiter. Through him and the relationship they develop, she learns that the truth she is seeking is quite different from what she was raised to believe. When her fear of identifying her real background to Rossiter threatens her own love of George, she must finally confront Rossiter and her own past, learning that there are no villains in the tale.

2012 ForeWord Book of the Year Award: Shortlist Finalist

2013 Sharp Writ Book Award: Third Prize

2013 Next Generation Indie Book Award: Short-list Finalist

2012 USA Book Award: First Prize

2013 Chautauqua Book Prize: Longlist Finalist

"One gets wrapped up in the ruse Elizabeth has woven, and becomes as determined as she is to learn the truth." — Joy Parks, Quill & Quire (Canada)

"An engrossing tale of family secrets with elements of psychological mystery and a touch of romance." — Florinda Pendley Vasquez, Shelf-Awareness

"You don’t have to know Bach from Bartok to appreciate this story... Motherless Child is a great read." —Susan G. Cole, Toronto Now

"For anyone interested in classical music, Motherless Child is a novel to be savored." — Roberta Silman,

A superbly wrought romantic page-turner that has elements in it of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice and Daphne du Maurier’s Rebecca ... A masterful writer." —Bill Gladstone, Canadian Jewish News

"Zeitlin brings Rossiter and Elizabeth to life with the nuance, heart, and depth of a Chopin etude." — Brenda Tremblay, WXXI-FM (Rochester, NY)

Marianne Langner Zeitlin has spent her adult life in the world of music—as the wife of acclaimed violinist Zvi Zeitlin, as one of the first women to manage an orchestra herself, and, in her young adulthood, as an employee at one of the largest music management firms in the United States. She brings her wealth of knowledge about the field to this engaging and suspenseful story. In addition to Motherless Child , she is the author of Next of Kin and Mira's Passage , and numerous short stories, articles, essays, and dramatic works.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780983297055
Publisher: Zephyr Press
Publication date: 07/03/2012
Pages: 300
Product dimensions: 5.40(w) x 8.20(h) x 1.10(d)

About the Author

Marianne Langner Zeitlin: the author of two novels, MIRA'S PASSAGE (Dell), and NEXT OF KIN (Zephyr Press), which won a City of Toronto Book Award, as well as numerous short stories, essays, articles and dramatic works. Recent stories have appeared in Passager, Aethlon, Scribblers on the Roof, and Throug

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Motherless Child 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
meldridge on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
The book description is dead-on in stating that the story gives a pretty good overview of the "business of classical music". While the plot line was not a shocker, it was the detail of the world of classical musicians that was interesting. this is a pretty quick read, but not without leaving you wanting to make note of specific pieces of classical music to listen to.
PhDinHorribleness on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
I really enjoyed this book. It's a very well-written story with excellent characters. It's a beautiful tale of self-discovery and love and how everything can turn on its head when the truth turns out to be far from what you had always believed it to be.
bleached on LibraryThing More than 1 year ago
Not quite sure what I expected opening the pages of Motherless Child, but it certainly wasn't to be engrossed in a page-turner wondering, "Will she be found out? Will she tell? Will they or won't they?" until the last page was devoured. Even with a beginner's knowledge of classical music, the story line, characters, and mysterious plot are more than enough to pull you through the world of orchestras and concertos.It was a refreshing and wonderful flashback into another time and another world.
vinceNR More than 1 year ago
Motherless Child is a captivating "who-done-it", set in the world of classical musicians and a controlling impresario. In this scenario, Ms. Zeitlin extensively develops the characters of the involved protagonists in an increasing, ever surprising web. Their interconnections are mind boggling. However, by the end of the book, all falls into place. Once started, this is a hard book to put down. Ms. Zeitlin has a wonderful command of the English language. She writes beautiful flowing sentences, sometimes almost poetic in their nature. Her vocabulary matches these. By the way, you don't have to be a musician to thoroughly enjoy this book.