The Woman in the Moonlight

A stirring historical novel about 19th century Vienna and the tragedy and dynamic passion that inspired Ludwig van Beethoven’s Moonlight Sonata.

Vienna, 1800. Countess Julie Guicciardi is about to take piano lessons with Ludwig van Beethoven, the most talented piano virtuoso in the musical capital of Europe. The spirited 18-year old is captivated by his volatile genius, while he is drawn to her curiosity and disarming candor. Between them, a unique romance blossoms. But Beethoven has a secret he’s yet to share, and Julie is harboring a secret of her own, one that could destroy their perfect love story. Set against the rich backdrop of 19th century Vienna, The Woman in the Moonlight is a sweeping portrait of a titan who wrestled with the gods and a woman who defied convention to inspire him.

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.

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