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Monday, July 7, 2014

Hungarian Dances by Jessica Duchen: First Page Mondays


I came across this book on an online sale. I had never heard of it, and had no idea what it was about. The thing that got me to it was the cover. If you see this image and think the cover is beautiful, you hardly can understand how gorgeous it actually is....

It is one of the most beautiful book covers I have ever seen...And the cover, in texture, and style of paper, is absolutely amazing...it is like handling an old book that is adorned with music and art and all things far away...It's simply worth buying it just for the cover...

Anyways, I can see that I am drifting way off topic, as I do a lot of times. So let me just get to sharing the first page with you (as it is I got quite late sharing this - its almost midnight!)

I

Air. Movement. Freedom.

 Wood, four strings, the scroll. Beyond them, the fireplace and its rose-patterned tiles. When she closes her eyes she glimpses clouds on the horizon, the earth flat and cracked; peaked thatch passing, dust, grass and faraway mirages, the beckoning shadows of the forest, the minstrel. Her bow is his in an unbroken loop through centuries. Horsehair, gut and metal, vibration. Her fingertips find the pitches of his storytelling; a slide, a flicker of pizzicato, the quietest harmonic she can manage. The minstrel whispers, through Marc Duplessis's music: who are you?


 Wheels. Not his, wooden and creaking under a painted wagon. Smoothness. Familiarity. Routine. A twizzle of keys, footsteps in the hall, and Karina is back in her front room, holding her violin; her husband is striding towards her with his arms open, her son is bounding down the stairs and she knows where she is again, even if she isn't quite sure what she's doing there, in her own home.
 'Karrie, darling.' Julian's wingspan curls round her. 'How's my little Gypsy? Playing with your toys?'
 Karina kisses him and says nothing.

 'Karina, are you free this morning? Your grandmother is having a bad day. We need you.'
 Karina, clutching the phone, glances at Julian's mahogany clock in the entrance hall. Jamie's at school, and she doesn't begin teaching until four. 'I'll get the next train,' she promises her mother. She brushes her hair and sets off for Lewes station, quick and light on her feet, enjoying the scents of spring leaves and salt blown inland from the sea.
 
- Debolina Raja Gupta