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Frozen Music [Paperback]

Marika Cobbold
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)

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Paperback, 15 Jun 2000 --  

Book Description

15 Jun 2000
This tale interweaves the lives of two unusual children: Esther, whose father walked out of her London home without a word; and Linus, bullied by his father, spoiled by his adoring but eccentric uncles and aunts, and growing up in Stockholm, longing to be an architect.

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Product details

  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Phoenix; New edition edition (15 Jun 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0753809516
  • ISBN-13: 978-0753809518
  • Product Dimensions: 2.5 x 12.9 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,187,065 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description


'Dreamy yet dextrous' (Observer)

'Deliciously descriptive ... beneath its charm lie serious truths' (She)

'A warm, funny novel' (Daily Mail) --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

From the Publisher

Recent reviews for Frozen Music
'Cobbold's first-person novel takes her heroine, Esther, from lonely childhood to life in her mid-thirties as a magazine journalist. Her story is paralleled by that of Linus, a Swedish boy, as both are idealists and outsiders, you suspect from the start that they will end up together. Esther is a woman who thinks she knows the rules, until a series of events forces her to see cause and effect in every gesture, and paralyses her with indecision;Linus is a man with a clear, bright dream, which Esther nearly destroys. Cobbold is an interesting writer; perceptive and funny, she deals with ideas and issues far deeper than her light tone... would have you believe.' (PB) Sunday Times Culture Magazine

'Funny and enjoyable with some weightier themes beneath the fluffiness' The Independent on Sunday

'Pride and Prejudice, Scandinavian style' Express on Sunday

'Dreamy yet dextrous' The Observer

'A warm, funny novel' Daily Mail

'Deliciously descriptive...beneath its charm lie serious truths' She

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Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
4.4 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars excellent. 15 Feb 2005
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I love reading. And sometimes it gets annoying reading novel after novel without finding THE ONE, a novel that will leave you sorry you have finished it.This is just such a novel! I started reading it and couldn't stop. I was gripped and was only released after I read the last page. I was tempted to start all over again immediately! It is romantic, but not annoyingly so and the characters are really well drawn. Most people will recognize themselves in one of them, most people will think 'I have felt this as well'. it is cleverly done as well and some episodes that seem anecdotic prove important in
the long run. A really good read!!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars parents, love, media (in that order) 15 April 2001
By A Customer
Frozen Music starts out rather undetached, describing the childhood, with a lot of funny and pointing observations. Then the lead character falls in love and we dig in. However, the end made me think again about all the threads about the media and private lives which are scattered throughout the book. There is a moral here.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Eccentric Love Story 5 July 2000
By A Customer
Marika Cobbold's charming book takes the conventions of the love-story and turns them on their head - this is a real sweetheart of a book, funny, good-natured, well-written. But no Pollyanna stuff here, because Cobbold's characters can have a waspish tart side to them. Human, very human, and perceptive too.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Creating Love 28 Sep 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
There is something rather emotional about Marika Cobbold novels. I say this having only read two and they have both effected me in very different ways.

Frozen Music could be described as a novel with a very bleak landscape, a grey world which is never coloured and never will be by the characters and the path they choose. It is also an emotionally wrought book, which deals with the effect of motherly love and love as an adult.

There are two main characters in this novel. Esther and Linus not known to each other as children, but their respective mother and step mothers are friends, and they know of each others existence, as the process of motherly pride is always something which is caught up on when friends get together.

They have very different childhoods and, Esther has a mother and a father who show not much love towards her, and as an adult she struggles to deal with the lack of affection and love in relationships. She believes for every one of her actions there is a ripple effect and that anything she chooses to do will have ramifications; smelling gas at her neighbour’s house, and not reporting it, ends in a rather tragic event which Cobbold adds humour to for the sake of Esther’s character but for me was a great example of Esther struggle to deal with any of her actions. “It’s like any action has to be put before a judge and jury residing permanently inside my head, examined and argued over until no reasonable doubt remains”. Esther needs to learn that life is a bit of a muddle. It made me think about the actions I take and how much thought I give to them and trying to empathise with Esther as she tries to come to terms with all her actions.

Linus on the other hand, loses his mother at a young age, and not much is really said about her.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An Intriguing and Entertaining Story 30 July 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
"My name is Esther Fisher and I'm just about to walk out on the only man I've ever loved. I'm thirty four and a latecomer to love, which makes this all the harder".

Esther Fisher, a journalist living in London, tells us the story of her lonely childhood and of her love/hate relationship with her very feminine, rather vague mother, Audrey, who makes no secret of the fact that she finds Esther too independently minded. As times goes on, we see Esther develop into a rather confused and obsessive adult, who worries continually that something she unwittingly does will have a tragic effect on someone else. This eventually becomes so paralysing that Esther cannot do her job effectively and she finds herself heading for a complete breakdown. Esther realizes she must do something to take hold of her life, but she isn't quite sure what.

Running parallel to Esther's story we read about Linus Stendal, a talented architect living in Sweden who grows up alone with his father, after his mother commits suicide. (No spoilers here, we learn this early in the novel). When his father marries Olivia, an English woman, who is a friend of Esther's mother, Linus and Esther learn quite a lot about each other, but when they finally meet in England, they find themselves in direct opposition to one another, and when Linus returns to Sweden, neither of them expects to meet again. However, family circumstances force them together again when Esther comes to Linus's beautiful holiday home, and as Esther gets to know Linus better, she is surprised to find herself falling for him. But Linus has met the lovely Pernilla with her golden hair, golden skin and beautiful green eyes, so why should he pay any attention to Esther?
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars NOT like pride and prejudice 18 May 2012
By lesley
On the front of the copy that I read, it said that it was like a swedish pride and prejudice, but that is completely wrong. It is different type of romance which is always a good thing. It seemed to me to be about Aspergers Syndrome. The way both the main characters are described indicates this. For example, They like lists and keeping everything in it's place. They are perceived as odd by others and see things differently. Their parents also display the symptom of not being able to show affection. I'm glad I read it.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Love Where You Least Expect It
This is the fourth Marika Cobbold I've read and I have to admit that I don't 'get' her books (probably my fault, not hers!). Read more
Published 15 months ago by Kate Hopkins
5.0 out of 5 stars A quietly compelling read
I don't know how I missed this one when it came out, but having read most of Marika's other novels I was expecting something good, and that is exactly what I got. Read more
Published on 8 Jan 2010 by P. Ashley
5.0 out of 5 stars Delightful
Book was bought by my Mother who generally has fairly obscure taste in literature. She has redeemed herself. Frozen music is witty and charming, recommended to all!
Published on 1 Dec 2000 by
5.0 out of 5 stars Clever, fresh and original
Marika Cobbold's black comedy masks a tough observation of character and condition. She has the gift of making you laugh and think in the same breath and she also articulates... Read more
Published on 29 Sep 2000
5.0 out of 5 stars Wow! 5 stars? Is that all?
This book really is something worth reading. I can relate to so many of the feelings that both of the characters have gone through, and I must say that the ending nearly had me in... Read more
Published on 4 Sep 2000
5.0 out of 5 stars Another fantastic novel by this under recognised author
A really wonderful book, beautifully written and full of great characters, humour and sadness. I wanted to gobble through it as it was such a brilliant book, but at the same time... Read more
Published on 21 Aug 2000
4.0 out of 5 stars Makes refreshing reading
Waffles a bit at the beginning but does get going once she's in Sweden! Very good story - worth persevering with.
Published on 3 Aug 2000
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