Rachel McMillan. Rose in Three Quarter Time. Amazon Digital Services, 2018.
For anyone who may have missed it, Ms. McMillan has been regularly releasing a series of delightful novellas set in Europe. So far in the series, she has captured the historical and musical nature of several European cities, as well as developed a fascinating cast of characters. This week’s review covers the second of these novellas.
On the heels of Love in Three Quarter Time, Rose in Three Quarter Time tells the story of Rose McNeil and her improbable career as a violinist in Salzburg and Vienna. When one of her performances captures the eye of renown conductor, Oliver Thorne, Rose finds a kindred spirit and dear friend who helps her transition to the European music scene. Soon after Rose joins Oliver’s Rainer Quartet as first chair violinist, she loses her visa and must leave Vienna for her home in Nova Scotia. Fortunately, Oliver has a plan to save his friendship with Rose and his first violinist: marry her. With a happy ending far from their minds, these musicians soon discover that being married to your best friend may have the unexpected outcome of resulting in a music-filled love story.
Rose in Three Quarter Time is a delightful read, with captivating characters and setting. As an added bonus, Ms. McMillan makes the “marriage of convenience” plot appear fresh and modern.
Overall, I loved reading Rose in Three Quarter Time! Personally, I have really enjoyed Ms. McMillan’s stories, including both her contemporary and historical fiction works. This particular novella shows her continued growth as a writer, as she significantly out-writes the first novella in this series. I found Rose and Oliver’s characters to be fun and quirky, while also illustrating a profound depth not often captured in a novella’s relatively short form. Somehow, Ms. McMillan’s novellas consistently capture the depth and complexity that other authors miss in even the longest full-length novels. With this story, she shows herself to be an emerging force in the genre and I very much look forward to reading whatever she decides to release next!
Fans of Ms. McMillan’s stories, especially Love in Three Quarter Time, will find Rose in Three Quarter Time to be an absolutely delightful read. Those with musical training will be particularly pleased by Ms. McMillan’s detailed examination of the many quirks of her musician characters.
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