J SS Bach is the story of three generations of women from either side of Germany’s 20th Century horror story – one side, a Jewish family from Vienna, the other linked to a ranking Nazi official at Dachau concentration camp – who suffer the consequences of what men do. Fast forward to 1990s California, and two survivors from the families meet. Rosa is a young Australian musicologist; Otto is a world-famous composer and cellist. Music and history link them. A novel of music, the Holocaust, love, and a dog. The author’s writing is a wonderland, captivating and drawing the reader in to the presented world. Time becomes no object as a literary universe unfolds and carries the reader through eighty years, where emotions are real and raw and beautifully given.
JSS Bach is available in ebook and hardback now. You can purchase your copy of both using the link below.
I’m always slightly nervous when I start reading a story involving the Holocaust as I know straight away that it will be very emotional and I’ll be very affected by it. This book was no exception with a lot of the narrative being gut wrenchingly sad. There is a lot of cruelty in this book which makes it hard to read at times, especially the scenes between Otto and his master.
Even though this is a sad book it is a beautifully written one with the author managing to describe every scene in vivid detail. I felt at times that I was there experiencing everything alongside the characters which made it seem very real. I found myself tearing up often during this book and had to put it down at times as I found it too hard to continue.
The thing that I liked the most about this book is it’s ultimately hopeful nature that leaves the reader plenty to think about. As fascism seems to be coming back into Europe and the UK it’s also a timely book that everyone needs to read.
Huge thanks to Anne Cater for inviting me onto the blog tour and to the publishers for my copy of this book.
About The Author:
Martin Goodman was born in Leicester, and has lived and worked in China, Qatar, the USA, Saudi Arabia, Thailand, Germany, The Netherlands, Italy and France. Travel forms a large part of his writing: both for strictly travel-related books and also for novels and biographies. His first novel ON BENDED KNEES was shortlisted for the Whitbread prize, and his most recent biography SUFFER AND SURVIVE won 1st Prize, Basis of Medicine in the BMA Book Awards 2008. He is the Professor of Creative Writing at the University of Hull. He lives in Hull, London and the French Pyrenees. ‘Such narrow, narrow confines we live in. Every so often, one of us primates escapes these dimensions, as Martin Goodman did. All we can do is rattle the bars and look after him as he runs into the hills. We wait for his letters home.’ ~ The Los Angeles Times