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Ratings and Book Reviews ()

Overall rating

4.4 out of 5
5 Stars
7 reviews have 5 stars
4 Stars
6 reviews have 4 stars
3 Stars
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All Book Reviews

  • Who was Mozart's sister?

    I really enjoyed this story. Believe it or not, this was the first time that I have read any of Marie Lu's work. I love music so I was really drawn to the premise of this story. I read the bulk of this book in a single day and couldn't get enough of Wolferl and Nannerl's story. I am so glad that I decided to give this book a try. There was a point at the start of this story that I thought that this book was going to be mostly set in the fantasy world of the Kingdom of Back. I was wrong. This book really reads like an historical fiction with short trips into fantasy. The fantasy elements were a nice addition to the story but I felt like the relationship between Nannerl and her brother, Wolferl, and their music was the main focus of the story. Nannerl is Wolferl's older sister. The world knows Wolferl as Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and he is remembered by everyone. But who remembers his sister who shared his talent? As children, they were both very gifted musicians and played for important audiences everywhere. They were not treated the same though. Nannerl is expected to help supervise her younger brother and knows that being a wife and mother is in her future. She is allowed to play her music but composition is strictly considered a man's domain. I really enjoyed the magical elements of this story. Hyacinth was a great character and I loved that I was never quite sure of his motivations. I thought that the descriptions of the scenes within the Kingdom of Back made this world come alive. All of the things that they were faced with in this land were exciting and helped to move the story along. I would recommend this book to others. I thought that this was a very well done story involving a historical figure from a unique point of view. I wouldn't hesitate to read more of Marie Lu's work in the future. I received a review copy of this book from G.P. Putnam's Sons Books for Young Readers via Bookish First.

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    6 person found this review helpful

    6 people found this review helpful

    6 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • beautiful story

    I am already a huge fan of Marie Lu. I love her writing style--always so beautiful, yet crisp and clean in its execution--and her story ideas. However, this is the first I've read of hers that is not straight sci-fi/fantasy! The Kingdom of Back follows Nannerl Mozart and her brother, Wolfgang as they develop their musical talents. Although most know at least a part of Wolfgang's story, few have heard of Nannerl despite her impressiv talent, mostly due to the fact that she is female. This weighs on young Nannerl and she finds escape and hope in a different world in this portal fantasy lush with music and imagination, both described in incredibly beautiful detail. Nannerl is a sympathetic protagonist who stole my heart and had my compassion early on. She is very easy to root for with her many admirable AND flawed characteristics. My only complaint was that much of the story follows Nannerl as an 8-year old, which made it difficult for me to identify with her.

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    2 person found this review helpful

    2 people found this review helpful

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Mozart's sister reimagined

    Marie Lu, known for her fantasy and science fiction has created a well-written and imaginative story about the childhood of the Mozart siblings. Wolfgang Mozart had an older sister nicknamed Nannerl, and together they imagined a fantasy land called the Kingdom of Back. Nannerl, like her brother, is a enormous talent in terms of playing and composing music, but it is 18th century Europe and women are not allowed to openly compose or have musical careers. Her greatest wish is to be remembered forever. Enter Hyacinthe, a faerie prince from the Kingdom of Back, who offers to make Nannerl's wish a reality, if she will complete a series of tasks for him. At first Nannerl is enthusiastic as she follows his wishes, but soon realizes that there is a sinister price that comes with Hyacinthe's demands. She realizes she must rethink her priorities. A big theme is this novel is the constraints that were placed on women in this time and it made me wonder how many talented women throughout history were unable to pursue their dreams. Four and a half stars.

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  • A Beautiful Mirror/Fairy Tale

    I'm not typically a fan of historical fiction but I love all of Marie Lu's work, so I had to give this a shot. And it was worth it. This is a beautiful story about a bond between sister and brother and their imaginative escape to from the pressures of their family life. The primary focus remained on Nannerl and her little brother Wolferl, and I loved their sweet, innocent bond. It created a compelling reading experience and was the highlight of the book. Both are such wonderful parallels together and the closeness they had. That isn't to say I only liked about the book, far from it. The fantasy realm of Back and the lore behind it read like a fairy tale. And all of this before the reflections for Nannerl's life were clear as day. As always, Lu's writing flows gorgeously onto the page and leaves the reader speechless. I was excited for this book and it lived up to its expectations, despite being a story I don't typically seek out. A must have for any reader who loves historical fantasy, fairy tales, brother-sister bonds, stunning writing, and music. I adored it!

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    0 person found this review helpful

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  • Great Read

    This book has been sitting on my shelf since I received it in my Owlcrate and I am very upset that it did. This book was truly enchanting. This story is about the Mozart siblings. Nannerl Mozart was born with the gift of music and wants more than anything to be remembered. Unfortunately she is a young woman in eighteenth century Europe which means her dream of being remembered and composing is just that, a dream. While she tours with her brother Wolfgang who is also a music prodigy (I bet you've heard of him) her hopes grow dimmer as her brother is thrust into the limelight and gets all the attention and recognition. One day Hyacinth, a fae from another land promises to grant her wish if she completes tasks for him in the Kingdom of Back. Nannerl and Wolfgang both dive into this fantastic world together but they soon realize that the Kingdom of Back is dangerous and their actions have consequences. I really enjoyed this book because it is based on a true story. Nannerl and Mozart actually did create their own universe called the Kingdom of Back when they were touring as children a d I loved that Marie Lu was able to make it real.

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