I’m lucky enough to have many a talented writing friend. Two have had books published this year and I was very happy to be given a copy of each of their books to review.
The Organist by Barbara Stevenson is a story set in the early 20th century and centers around Gavin who is a successful Edinburgh vet with a love for two things. Playing beautiful organs and Fiona Lang. The book opens with him playing the organ at the wedding of Fiona who to Gavin’s heartbreak is marrying another man. It then takes us on a journey through Europe and back to Edinburgh with references to Orkney threading through the novel. This was heartwarming for me in particular as I live her and could recognize places referenced.
The book is definitely one of two halves. A gentle first part which really picks up pace as you continue, with some surprising twists and turns towards the end. Gavin is a very likable and kind hearted character. Honest and trustworthy who wants to help whoever he can, wherever he is, but this leaves him to being taken advantage of sometimes in a dramatic way.
As a vet herself, the author shows us her extensive knowledge of veterinary care especially using more herbal remedies fitting for the era the book was set. Her debut novel showcases her talent and as I reached the final twist at the end I found it to be very fitting of Barbara’s style having heard her pieces read in our local writing group. Well done Barbara, a most enjoyable read and I look forward to the next one.
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