Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Virtuosity by Jessica Martinez

Title: Virtuosity
Author: Jessica Martinez
Published: October 18, 2011 by Simon Pulse
Pages: 304
Goodreads Summary:
"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...."
When I first found out about this book, I was instantly intrigued by the cover. It just reminded me of an iTunes card, does it not? After I read the synopsis, I wasn't intrigued any longer, because it was about music.. and I'm most definitely not interested in reading about musicians after reading If I Stay.. but Racquel told me read it, and after I heard her opinions about Virtuosity, I decided to give it a shot. And I was far from disappointed. In fact, I am SO incredibly thankful Racquel recommended it me!

The reader is first introduced to Carmen Bianchi, who is a competitive violinist, and her mother Diana, who is also her manager. Carmen is home schooled by Heidi, who also is Carmen's friend. Then, Jeremy King is brought into the story, whom is also a competitive violinist that Carmen was very eager to meet. After an embarrassing introduction, Carmen grows a strong hate for Jeremy King, and they email back and forth. Carmen and Jeremy are both dynamic characters; their feelings for each other change immensely throughout the book. As characters, Carmen was very strong and powerful, despite her having to take the Inderal medicine. She proves herself an independent young lady, and I loved that about her. Jeremy King was just adorable. Martinez does a great job showing his gallant presence.

I think the plot was very well written; the way Martinez writes flows just like the way she describes Carmen when she hears music: beautiful and pleasant. The first 2/3 were good, and acceptable, but the last third of the book was just fast-paced and indescribable. I found it hard to pry my eyes away from each page, it was that good. There were several surprises plotted here and there, and Martinez reveals each surprise perfectly.

Alas, this book was an amazing debut. Martinez surely knows a lot about music, and she surely changed my opinion on music-involved contemporaries. I seriously recommend this book to all contemporary lovers; music and non-music lovers! I am desperately looking forward to Jessica Martinez's next book!

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