Author: Jessica Martinez
Date(s) read: July 8, 2013
Genre: YA contemporary
Source: Purchased (paperback)
Now is not the time for Carmen to fall in love. And Jeremy is hands-down the wrong guy for her to fall for. He is infuriating, arrogant, and the only person who can stand in the way of Carmen getting the one thing she wants most: to win the prestigious Guarneri competition. Carmen’s whole life is violin, and until she met Jeremy, her whole focus was winning. But what if Jeremy isn’t just hot…what if Jeremy is better?
Carmen knows that kissing Jeremy can’t end well, but she just can’t stay away. Nobody else understands her–and riles her up–like he does. Still, she can’t trust him with her biggest secret: She is so desperate to win she takes anti-anxiety drugs to perform, and what started as an easy fix has become a hungry addiction. Carmen is sick of not feeling anything on stage and even more sick of always doing what she’s told, doing what’s expected.
Sometimes, being on top just means you have a long way to fall…
I love music books. Anything to do with professional musicians, amateur musicians, bands … you name it, I’ll love it. So, when I saw that this book mixed music with romance, I was hooked! I mean, those are two of my favourite things!
I was definitely pleasantly surprised by Virtuosity. I loved all of the music talk, especially the descriptions of the music itself. It was great to actually know (being a musician myself) some of the pieces that were mentioned in the piece, being able to hear it as I read. I didn’t know much about being a professional musician, but I’ve heard stories. Just like getting into dance, it’s something that is HARD and something that you need to work at all the time.
I did really like this book, but a few things stood out for me. One is that I felt like there wasn’t a lot of practicing going on. Carmen seems very concerned with going against her mother/manager that I felt like I wouldn’t feel sorry for her if she didn’t win the competition. Of cousre, this is probably because the book had that romance slant AND was under 300 pages long. Naturally, it’s not going to be pages and pages of practice — if you want that, go learn an instrument!
Anyway, I did like Carmen’s character and understood the stress she went through before performances. DEFINITELY something I could relate to. I also really liked Jeremy’s character, mainly because I love boys in music. Things do get a little weird partway through between Jeremy and Carmen — I won’t say what happened, but it was something I didn’t totally agree with. I felt like the story should’ve been different. And Carmen’s mom? Pure evil. I could get where she was coming from, but she drove me nuts throughout the story.
The book flowed quite nicely and I found myself hooked for an entire day! Maybe it was the music, but something in the book spoke to me. Definitely great if you’re looking for a lighter read, or if you’re a music lover!