Spanning 50 years and various dazzling European cities, Morrisroe’s fiction debut combines historical fact and speculation into this story of the woman who inspired Beethoven’s Moonlight Sonata. Julie is a complex, thoughtfully written protagonist, surrounded by a large but never overwhelming cast of supporting characters, and the historical backdrop, full of court intrigue, is rich and detailed. Historical-fiction fans will find much to enjoy here.
To the well-honed investigative skills on display in her acclaimed biography of the Dionysian Robert Mapplethorpe, Patricia Morrisroe now adds the art of intuitive invention. Her first novel gives us the intractable genius of Ludwig (or as his Francophile contemporaries preferred, Louis) van Beethoven through the eyes of Countess Julie (or, as he preferred, Giulietta) Guicciardi, the dedicatee of his Piano Sonata No. 14, popularly as the “Moonlight” Sonata. The supporting cast listed at the outs… Read more
Matthew GurewitschBeyond Criticism