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Synopsis

Andrew Eiger, an ambitious American musicologist, is stuck in a small college in the Midwest when fate delivers him an original fifteenth-century manuscript. It’s his calling card to the finest academic institutions, but first he has to crack the notational code. At a conference that commemorates the great French medieval composer, Johannes Ockeghem, Andrew must convince Emma Mitchell – the dynamic conductor of the renowned early-music group, Beyond Compère – to share his vision of the composition’s glittering premiere. But who wrote it? The true story is yet to be discovered, hidden in a memoir that describes the treachery of the famous Josquin Desprez. Deftly blending farce with acute knowledge of life as a performer, Donald Greig’s impressive first novel is a thrilling behind-the-scenes tale set in the world of classical music. Witty and informative, it skilfully refracts the present day through the prism of the past, weaving themes of memory, ambition, friendship and love.

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