Welcome to Violin & Books!

I’m a multi-genre author and book reviewer who started to play the violin in my mid thirties. This magnificent instrument has brought a new wonderful dimension to my life–not to mention that it has been a GREAT challenge for a late starter like myself! What’s been really neat about learning to play the violin, among other things, is that it has inspired me enormously in my writing. All of a sudden, I have dozens of stories in my head, all violin-related in one way or another!

Basically, I started this blog for two reasons. First, I wanted to find an audience for my violin-related books. If you’re like me and you play the violin, you love reading about the violin. Second, I wanted to keep track of violin-related fiction available on the net. There are hundreds of nonfiction books related to the violin, but hardly any fiction (maybe because there are few violinists who also happen to be fiction writers?)

I’ll be adding reviews and interviews as often as possible. If you know of any great (or not so great) violin novels, please let me know so I may add it to my list.

Thanks for stopping by and I hope you’ll visit again!

Mayra Calvani

My websites:

My Official Website
Mayra’s Secret Bookcase
The Slippery Book Review Blog

My blogs:

Mayra’s Secret Bookcase
The Dark Phantom Review


5 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Mischa on November 16, 2007 at 9:07 am

    Hi Mayra,

    great idea your violin/literature-blog! Additionally to the violinist.com list here some others mostly from german-speaking literature. Some are translated, some are just published in Germany, starting with two novelettes:

    Franz Grillparzer: Der arme Spielmann
    engl. translation: http://web.onetel.net.uk/~wstanners/grillpar.htm
    original: http://gutenberg.spiegel.de/?id=5&xid=960&kapitel=1#gb_found

    The translation is quite bad, much is lost in translation, some descriptions are very vivid, e. g. the old man playing self-forgotten in the crowd.

    Same applies to:
    Joseph von Eichendorff: Aus dem Leben eines Taugenichts
    engl translation: http://www.fln.vcu.edu//eichendorff/taugenichts1_e_pics.html
    original: http://gutenberg.spiegel.de/?id=5&xid=532&kapitel=1#gb_found

    Quite entertaining books are Paolo Maurensig’s “Canone inverso” (http://www.amazon.com/Canone-Inverso-Paolo-Maurensig/dp/0753809494/ref=pd_bbs_2?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1195203069&sr=8-2) and “The Black Violin” (http://www.amazon.com/Black-Violin-Novel-Maxence-Fermine/dp/0743456858/ref=pd_sim_b) of Maxence Fermine. Good for plane trips and shorter strikes.

    Then two novels, both are (in my opinion) incredibly bad written.
    First Pascal Mercier’s “Lea” (http://specials.hanser.de/mercier/index.asp), published this year. He wrote “Night Train to Lisbon”, which was quite a success, unfortunately Lea is pure, undiluted sob-stuff, but since you asked for violin related books… 🙂

    Finally Dieter Kühn’s “Beethoven und der schwarze Geiger”, covering a fictional journey Beethoven’s to Africa with his mate George Bridgetower, a famous black violinist in his time (Beethoven dedicated his Kreutzer-sonata to Bridgetower at the first). It’s a fairly witty portrait of both, puzzled together from anecdotes (http://www.amazon.de/Beethoven-schwarze-Geiger-Dieter-K%C3%BChn/dp/3596131707).

    Now after such lousy books like the last two, a good movie: ever heard of El Violín (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l23wYKg7wjY)? Mexican movie from 2005, since your Spanish is perfect you’ll love it…!

    Have a great weekend,



  2. Posted by Mischa on November 16, 2007 at 9:09 am

    oh – I thought it would become a mail. 🙂

    Anyway – I chose the wrong word with the Kühn book. It’s not witty at all, I meant cantankerous.


  3. Posted by thedarkphantom on November 16, 2007 at 11:48 am

    Thanks so much for taking the time to share all this info. I appreciate it and will add the links ASAP.


  4. Dear Mayra: Very nice work. [this is not a comment, but a link submission]

    Please consider adding the following:

    C.M. Sunday



    Thanks for your consideration,


  5. Dear Mayra,

    Greetings from a fellow writer-violinist! 🙂

    I was pleasantly surprised to see that you had posted a link to my blog over at violinist.com

    I’m flattered, thanks!

    I haven’t posted anything lately as I’ve been busy with the “writing” part of my career, but I’ll be sure to update the site whenever possible.

    Again, thanks! X-D

    Cheers and best regards,


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