Today I have a review of Rhapsody by Mitchell James Kaplan. A big thank you to the author for the gifted copy. Rhapsody publishes today via Gallery Books.
Wow, what a love story. Though I’m familiar with George Gershwin’s music, I knew little of his personal life.
It’s the roaring 20s when Kay Swift attends a concert. Well, it’s not just any concert. It is composed by none other than George Gershwin, already donned a protege still in his twenties. Kay is mesmerized by George, especially as an expert pianist herself, and a long love affair begins.
To complicate matters, Kay is already married, and she loves her husband, too. It’s not a spoiler because it’s in the synopsis: Kay and George’s affair fills their lives until his death.
Rhapsody also explores the deep and abiding love Kay has for her husband, James Warburg. As one can imagine, it’s a complex, multi-layered dynamic well-written and completely absorbing.
George Gershwin himself is written as a kind and steadfast character, one who will take a stand for what is right and use his power for the greater good.
Overall, I cherished the characters and the story. Historical fiction fans will be drawn in by the engaging writing and dialogue. There’s so much to love here.
I received a gifted copy. All opinions are my own.
About the Book:
“Mitchell James Kaplan [brings] his impressive knowledge of history, composition, and the heart’s whims to bear on this shining rendition of Swift and Gershwin’s star-crossed love.” —Therese Anne Fowler, New York Times bestselling author of Z and A Good Neighborhood
“A lilting, jazzy ballad as catchy as a Gershwin tune…Rhapsody will have you humming, toe-tapping, and singing along with every turn of the page.” —Kate Quinn, New York Timesbestselling author of The Alice Network and The Huntress
One evening in 1924, Katharine “Kay” Swift—the restless but loyal society wife of wealthy banker James Warburg and a serious pianist who longs for recognition—attends a concert. The piece: Rhapsody in Blue. The composer: a brilliant, elusive young musical genius named George Gershwin.
Kay is transfixed, helpless to resist the magnetic pull of George’s talent, charm, and swagger. Their ten-year love affair, complicated by her conflicted loyalty to her husband and the twists and turns of her own musical career, ends only with George’s death from a brain tumor at the age of thirty-eight.
Set in Jazz Age New York City, this stunning work of fiction, for fans of The Paris Wife and Loving Frank, explores the timeless bond between two brilliant, strong-willed artists. George Gershwin left behind not just a body of work unmatched in popular musical history, but a woman who loved him with all her heart, knowing all the while that he belonged not to her, but to the world.