Thursday, July 19, 2018

Every Note Played by Lisa Genova

Title: Every Note Played
Author: Lisa Genova
Read by:  Dennis Boutsikaris and Dogmara Dominczk with an afterward read by the author
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Length: Approximately 8 hours and 3 minutes
Source: Review Copy from Simon & Schuster.  Thank-you!

I am a fan of Lisa Genova’s works.  She writes intricate tales of people suffering from neurological diseases.  She writes on how they affect the sufferer as well as the family.  After reading and enjoying Still Alice for a spring selection of the Kewaunee Library Book Club, Every Note Played was picked for the August selection of the book club.

Richard Evans is a world class pianist.  What starts out as a tingling in his fingers is soon discovered to be ALS.  As Richard quickly succumbs to ALS and starts to lose his ability to move various parts of his body, he realizes that in becoming a world class pianist, he has also become alone with no one to help him.  His divorce from his Polish pianist wife Karina was acrimonious and his daughter Grace sided with his wife.  Grace doesn’t know the full story of their divorce and Richard doesn’t want to be the one to tell her.  Will Richard be able to come to terms with Karina?

Karina loved Richard and was on the path to be a star in the jazz pianist field until becoming a mother detoured her from this track.  As time passes by and Richard’s star rises and his affairs come to light, Karina finds herself very bitter.  Now that Richard is ill, can Karina forgive him and herself?

I really enjoyed how this audiobook had two different narrators, one for Karina’s voice and one for Richard’s.  The story was told between their alternating viewpoints with it switching each chapter.  They both were superb narrators.

I didn’t know much about ALS before reading this book besides the fact that Lou Gehrig and Stephen Hawking had it.  Every Note Played gave a lot of detail on what exactly having this disease was like from a personal point of view of someone suffering it as well as the caregiver.  It was a learning experience for me, and I’ll admit I had tears in my eyes at the end of the book.  This should be an interesting book to discuss at book club next month!


  1. This would be a good book club book!

  2. Laura, I enjoyed your well-written review. This sounds like a touching book/audiobook. It does seem like a good choice for book clubs!

  3. I have Still Alice on my list and keep hearing about how all her books are great. Sounds like I'd also be in tears by the end. Great review!

  4. It will definitely make for good discussion at book club. I've enjoyed every book that I've read by Lisa Genova. They are very thought provoking and emotional.