Hot Best Seller

Night Music

Availability: Ready to download

At an auction in Milan, down-on-his-luck music scholar Matthew Pierce acquires a mysterious document that may or may not be the diary of a young Mozart. His search for the truth will thrust him into the decadent world of Europe's most gifted musicians and wealthiest aristocrats-where passion and intrigue build to a crescendo of murder...


Compare

At an auction in Milan, down-on-his-luck music scholar Matthew Pierce acquires a mysterious document that may or may not be the diary of a young Mozart. His search for the truth will thrust him into the decadent world of Europe's most gifted musicians and wealthiest aristocrats-where passion and intrigue build to a crescendo of murder...

30 review for Night Music

  1. 5 out of 5

    DROPPING OUT

    A down-at-the heel musicologist comes across documents that appear to be fragments of a "lost diary" that Mozart had kept, and this launches him on a year-long adventure that nearly kills him. While parts of the plot stretched the limits of credibility, and dialogue seemed at times to be strained, I found myself drawn into this sometimes macabre and suspenseful mystery. I include it in "thinking person's mysteries" rather then "mysteries" because this is not a book to take to the beach or pass t A down-at-the heel musicologist comes across documents that appear to be fragments of a "lost diary" that Mozart had kept, and this launches him on a year-long adventure that nearly kills him. While parts of the plot stretched the limits of credibility, and dialogue seemed at times to be strained, I found myself drawn into this sometimes macabre and suspenseful mystery. I include it in "thinking person's mysteries" rather then "mysteries" because this is not a book to take to the beach or pass time at an airport. Slater is an acknowledged Mozart scholar and accomplished concert pianist, and these are reflected on every page. As Umberto Eco introduced the world to High Middle Ages in his now-classic Name of the Rose, so Slater recreated a significant aspect of the cultural world of 18th century Europe. Throughout the book, the author does sustain a dark and ominous air of tension that was strongly reminiscent of the dark landscapes of the artist Arbit Blatas. The final scene, in which a wild assembly of "characters" are gathered and the denouement is played out is worthy of the finest Agatha Christie! Slater is working on another novel, one about Chopin. I, for one, look forward to reading it.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Louann Reid

    I agree with one reviewer that this is a thinking person's mystery. I liked it very much for the new knowledge I gained about Mozart, the fast-paced plot, and the multiple European settings. The narrator was a bit too often sexually aroused (seemed gratuitous), but the intrigue was wonderful. Interested in translation, archives, and mysteries related to documents, I would recommend it to anyone who wants a mystery that makes them consider issues beyond the resolution of a crime.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Ronn

    If you are looking for a DaVinci Code-style mystery involving Mozart manuscripts, this is your book. Unfortunately you also get a protagonist who is dumb as a bag of hair [seriously, if this guy was in a horror movie, you'd be screaming, "You moron! Dont go in the basement!"], a large group of other characters that barely have a sympathetic soul among them, an incredibly convoluted plot, and a contrived and completely unsatisfying ending. The one star is for the writing itself. It was engaging e If you are looking for a DaVinci Code-style mystery involving Mozart manuscripts, this is your book. Unfortunately you also get a protagonist who is dumb as a bag of hair [seriously, if this guy was in a horror movie, you'd be screaming, "You moron! Dont go in the basement!"], a large group of other characters that barely have a sympathetic soul among them, an incredibly convoluted plot, and a contrived and completely unsatisfying ending. The one star is for the writing itself. It was engaging enough to keep me reading and hopeful for 650-odd pages. I just wish some of that hope had been justified. Alas.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Duncan

    Hilariously atrocious writing. Stopped pretty quickly.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Amanda

    It was pretty good! I have to say the main drawback is it's length, almost five hundred pages. Egad! Here's the story: Matthew Pierce is a Mozart scholar. I won't say a "prominent" scholar because he's a little down on his luck and hasn't made his big break. While on a trip in Europe, he gets stuck in Milan and happens to see an estate sale. He notices, stuck between some other miscellanous papers, what appears to be parts of Mozart's diary. No one else had noticed so he get's the papers for next It was pretty good! I have to say the main drawback is it's length, almost five hundred pages. Egad! Here's the story: Matthew Pierce is a Mozart scholar. I won't say a "prominent" scholar because he's a little down on his luck and hasn't made his big break. While on a trip in Europe, he gets stuck in Milan and happens to see an estate sale. He notices, stuck between some other miscellanous papers, what appears to be parts of Mozart's diary. No one else had noticed so he get's the papers for next to nothing. And then the whirlwind starts. He gets invited to a swanky event hosted by a Viscount in France on his estate. And this is a fancy fancy get together lasting weeks with some of the world's wealthiest and talented people: opera singers (of course), royalty, etc. And everyone has something to do Mozart. So of course there's gossip, masked balls, and of course....DEATH. A few people wind up dead, there's scary threatening notes, and attempted murder. Of course there is. So Matthew Pierce needs to know a few things: 1) is his Mozart diary for real? 2) is his life in danger? 3) who is threatening the guests? It was actually a pretty fun whirlwind mystery. I have to say Harrison Gradwell Slater knows his Mozart. I loved reading the diary pieces and it even inspired me to pop in and listen to some Mozart while reading parts of the book. I absolutely adored the European descriptions. He makes the cities and settings come alive. I loved that. The only thing is that it drug a bit sometimes. And sometimes Matthew Pierce was so kowtowed (I had to look up how to spell that word...ha!) that I wanted to slap him upside the head. And like I said before, it's a bit too long. But now it's got me all interested in the life of Mozart.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Sara Jo Schmidt

    A begrudging 2 stars. This was not the story I thought it was going to be. I thought it would be more of a historical fiction. There are 4 main sections of this book. Part One: College professor/musicologist who is trying and failing to climb the rungs of academia visits Europe during summer break to find inspiration. Attends estate auction in Italy and buys box of random financial documents belonging to estate dating to the 1700's. Finds secret Mozart diary at bottom of box. Comes back home and A begrudging 2 stars. This was not the story I thought it was going to be. I thought it would be more of a historical fiction. There are 4 main sections of this book. Part One: College professor/musicologist who is trying and failing to climb the rungs of academia visits Europe during summer break to find inspiration. Attends estate auction in Italy and buys box of random financial documents belonging to estate dating to the 1700's. Finds secret Mozart diary at bottom of box. Comes back home and is randomly contacted by some secret music Illuminati to attend a 3 week party/convention in France. Part Two: Attends strange musical Illuminati party. Strange and mysterious things start happening. People are murdered. Lots of talk about Mozart documents. Conspiracies develop revolving around an international money laundering scheme. Shady characters. Part Three: Professor skips around Europe and lands in a secret Russian monastery where he pretends to be a monk for a month while transcribing more secret Mozart documents at monastery. Barely survives an attempt on his life when evil hitman hired from evil money laundering corporation tries to kill him. Spends 9 months in hospital and rehab. Part Four: All guests reconvene at the secret musical Illuminati party for a "Who dunnit" convention. Confessions are made, some secrets are kept. Most of the plot remains unresolved while professor man walks away into the sunset. I put down the book with disgust and went to sleep.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Deborah

    If you are a fan of the Da Vinci Code, you may like this book more than I did. The Mozart aspects of the book were very interesting. However, I found the dialogue to be stilted, the main character to be annoying and the plotting ridiculously over the top. Two things I would also like to point out to the author: 1. At the time of writing, Switzerland used Swiss Francs as currency, not dollars. 2. If you are going to introduce the character of a frumpy librarian just so you can be surprised later whe If you are a fan of the Da Vinci Code, you may like this book more than I did. The Mozart aspects of the book were very interesting. However, I found the dialogue to be stilted, the main character to be annoying and the plotting ridiculously over the top. Two things I would also like to point out to the author: 1. At the time of writing, Switzerland used Swiss Francs as currency, not dollars. 2. If you are going to introduce the character of a frumpy librarian just so you can be surprised later when she is sexy in a costume, make sure you actually get where she's from correct. Iowa City is the home of the University of Iowa, NOT Iowa State, which is in Ames, IA. Don't be so condescending about the Midwest that you let your ignorance in geography shine through. This librarian is glaring over her glasses at you for your lack of fact checking.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Martin Mulcahey

    Part travelogue, part history book, part musicology, all mystery. I found the book compelling and the research which gives it the fountation just a fascinating as the plot structure. I believe the book does reveal the cult of personality that still surrounds Mozart over 200 years after his death, but obviously not as dramatic as the book suggests. The only thing holding me back from giving the book five stars was the ending, not the actual ending but the way it was wrapped up in the somewhat cli Part travelogue, part history book, part musicology, all mystery. I found the book compelling and the research which gives it the fountation just a fascinating as the plot structure. I believe the book does reveal the cult of personality that still surrounds Mozart over 200 years after his death, but obviously not as dramatic as the book suggests. The only thing holding me back from giving the book five stars was the ending, not the actual ending but the way it was wrapped up in the somewhat cliche way where everyone was brought back in the end. Also at some stages there were a lot of characters to keep track off. Still, I love the descriptions of the cities and places visited, it made the book and set the right old world intrigue atmosphere. Very good read.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Susan

    The raison d'etre for this mystery was the amazing life and works of Mozart. The title is taken from one of Mozart's most often played serenades - Eine kleine Nachtmusik. The novel also serves as a guided tour through all the great cities Europe and is nearly overwhelming with details of art, architecture, fashion, wine, food, etc. The plot is very Jamesian - European decadence and treachery versus American naivete. The hero/narrator, however, is self-absorbed and almost whiney and too taken with The raison d'etre for this mystery was the amazing life and works of Mozart. The title is taken from one of Mozart's most often played serenades - Eine kleine Nachtmusik. The novel also serves as a guided tour through all the great cities Europe and is nearly overwhelming with details of art, architecture, fashion, wine, food, etc. The plot is very Jamesian - European decadence and treachery versus American naivete. The hero/narrator, however, is self-absorbed and almost whiney and too taken with the opulence of his surroundinds and the wealth of those he meets. The lost Mozart letters were a very clever plot device, but overall there were too many unnecessary descriptive words and the various characters were one-dimensional.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Rachel Hackney

    I saw a lot of earlier comments on this book with which I completely agreed. The parts describing the protagonist's travels and the sections about Mozart are highly enjoyable. So much of this is padded, though. A skilled editor would have trimmed down this book to a much more manageable length and made it a far better read. As for the whodunit: the clues were so abundant, and the story repeated them so often, I found very little that was a surprise at the end. The worst parts, by far, were the s I saw a lot of earlier comments on this book with which I completely agreed. The parts describing the protagonist's travels and the sections about Mozart are highly enjoyable. So much of this is padded, though. A skilled editor would have trimmed down this book to a much more manageable length and made it a far better read. As for the whodunit: the clues were so abundant, and the story repeated them so often, I found very little that was a surprise at the end. The worst parts, by far, were the sections in which the protagonist was mired in lewd thoughts about some of the female characters. At times, I felt I was reading a teenage boy's poorly written fantasies.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Chrystal Hays

    This is an interesting read. In some ways, it reminds me of John Grisham or Dan Brown. However, it's scholarly, full of interesting trivia and real history. It's set in Europe, and in some ways is a little like a travel guide. This would translate very brilliantly to film, with a big enough budget. For some reason, at one point early in the book (p 103-111), the narrator suddenly seems to be a complete idiot or perhaps suffering from some mental disability...after having seemed clever enough at This is an interesting read. In some ways, it reminds me of John Grisham or Dan Brown. However, it's scholarly, full of interesting trivia and real history. It's set in Europe, and in some ways is a little like a travel guide. This would translate very brilliantly to film, with a big enough budget. For some reason, at one point early in the book (p 103-111), the narrator suddenly seems to be a complete idiot or perhaps suffering from some mental disability...after having seemed clever enough at the outset. However, that goes away if you press through. Not a bad summer read, especially if you enjoy music.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Marcy

    What an annoying and aggravating book. I wish I could have abandoned it, but it's just so hard for me to do that, and a small little part of me did want to see whodunit (although even the so-called resolution was unsatisfying). It's filled with a cast of unlikeable and unrealistic characters, the writing is slow and ponderous, and the book manages to render a topic I love (Mozart's life and music) almost uninteresting.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Clacie

    This was a looong book. It took me forever to finish. I read more about Mozart than I ever have or ever will again. It's not that it was boring, there were just so many words. As a person who usually loves description, I was becoming overwhelmed by all the wordiness. This would be a better movie than book, mostly because it would be condensed to a reasonable length. So glad to be finished with it.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Lisa Lap

    Best way to describe this book? Snore fest. I am so annoyed that I just don't have the ability to not finish a book once I start it because this book irritated me completely. The potential was there for a great mystery thriller but it got completely bogged down by long passages of alleged Mozart diaries, overflowing superfluous scenery description and sadly not one really likable character. Huge disappointment. Until next time, ~Lisa

  15. 5 out of 5

    Lisa Mills

    It was pretty good considering it was too long, too historical and too descriptive for me. Thank goodness for the complex murder mystery that was threaded throughout the novel. There were quite a few characters to keep track of but the main character, Matthew, kept me grounded. I found it kind of amusing how such a down on his luck musicologist could be so instrumental in solving such a complicated murder mystery.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Barbara

    One star is a vast overstatement. Probably the worst book I have read in decades. Was a book club selection and we all panned it..found no redeeming info in it that we could not have gotten out of travel brochures. Can sum it up by saying that when I give it to a used book store I want to make certain no one can trace it back to me!

  17. 4 out of 5

    Shelie

    I started this book with great gusto and was immediately drawn in. I lost interest about half way through and took forever to finish the rest. It became a little to complicated and unbelievable. I did enjoy the parts about the diary and Mozart.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Maria Hernandez

    Money, murder, sex, power... Great read!!! A vast number of characters each with their own piece of firewood to throw in the fire. I love a complex plot with turns and twists that seem to never end.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Kameel Nasr

    This book is certainly written by a musician who knows Mozart. It's a mystery that hangs out among high society in various European cities, but it's all related to a Mozart manuscript that the protagonist finds and needs to be authenticated. You don't have to be a musician to enjoy the book.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Andrea

    A murder mystery linked to undiscovered Mozart diaries and forgeries within the world of musicology, performance, and competitive foundation support. The book starts slow but picks up the pace after the first few chapters.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Steven

    I think it's the worst book I've finished in a long time. I'm not sure why I kept going other than momentum.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Anne

    An intelligent murder mystery in the style of The Da Vinci Code (though not THAT good.) The ending was a bit disappointing.

  23. 5 out of 5

    VerJean

    Music Mozart Mystery Author named "Slater" It 'sang' out to me. Good storyline and enjoyable. Read in 2007.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Stacey

    3.5 Good historical fiction and great detail. Too long, but had me googling more about Mozart.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Peg Snyder

    A musicologist discovers lost Mozart letters. He is invited to Venice where he realizes he is in danger. Great descriptions of art and architecture, music and art.

  26. 4 out of 5

    John Snyder

  27. 5 out of 5

    GoodDay

  28. 5 out of 5

    Marielle

  29. 5 out of 5

    AmberAlice

  30. 4 out of 5

    Gretchen E. Peterson

Add a review

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Loading...
We use cookies to give you the best online experience. By using our website you agree to our use of cookies in accordance with our cookie policy.