The Mozart Season

Our rating: ***½

Allegra Shapiro, a twelve-year-old violinist, is confronted with the opportunity to perform in the Bloch Competition finals—and she accepts, even though she’s certain she’ll be the youngest player. Mozart’s fourth violin concerto is what she must learn. And so begins “the Mozart season” of her life, in which Allegra focuses on practicing. As the summer progresses, she learns not just the Mozart piece, but about people, music, and herself.

While it’s not bursting with plot, The Mozart Season is still an interesting read, especially for musicians, and at times it’s quite touching. My main objection to the book is the overuse of a kind of “scattered train of thought,” first-person writing style. It is effective in conveying Allegra’s young point of view, but it comes across too strongly, in my opinion. For the most part, however, I enjoyed the book. It’s not going on my list of favorites, but I consider it a very worthwhile read.