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Frozen Music Paperback – 15 Jun 2000

17 customer reviews

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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: 12.8 x 2.5 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,364,991 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

Review

'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

4.5 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By H. Lacroix on 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 By A Customer on 15 April 2001
Format: Paperback
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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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Susie B TOP 50 REVIEWER on 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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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 5 July 2000
Format: Paperback
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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By Jo D'Arcy TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 28 Sept. 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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By Kate Hopkins TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 23 July 2013
Format: Paperback
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!). Her mixture of Scandinavian melancholy and whimsical, slightly wacky humour leave me feeling far more depressed than the straightforwardly bleak plays and films of her countrymen Strindberg and Bergman. Cobbold is fascinated with people who don't quite fit in to society (from the old lady dying of Alzheimer's and her granddaughter who can't settle to anything in 'Guppies for Tea' to Eliza, who believes she's killed her best friend and sets out to make everyone's lives (particularly her own) as miserable as possible in reparation in the recent 'Drowning Rose'). In this novel we have two outsiders, brought together initially by a violent disagreement, who slowly realize that they are falling in love.

Esther Fisher, the first person narrator for much of the novel, is a sufferer from obsessive compulsive syndrome. This, coupled with a tricky relationship with her smothering, overprotective mother (who wants a quiet, musical prodigy for a daughter and gets the cross Esther instead) means that she has a thoroughly miserable childhood. She tries to control her messy life by setting herself a series of strict rules for living. These get her through Oxford and into a career as a tabloid journalist (for one of the better tabloids). But when her rules prove useless to prevent two disasters, she suffers a nervous breakdown and begins to find decision making impossible. She is roused from her depression by hearing the news that a Kent businessman is planning to build a 'people's opera house' in the Kent countryside - unfortunately demolishing an old cottage inhabited by an eighty-something brother and sister in the process.
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