Playing From Memory is a deeply moving, compassionate
novel about the power of marriage to survive under stress, a love
story that tells of a musician's courageous battle against a
degenerative illness and his wife's struggle to face the end of
their life together.
Ben Seidler, an intense, passionately committed violist, is at
the height of his career as a member of the Casa Bella Quartet, one
of the foremost string quartets in the nation. His gifts as a
concert artist had always been intuitive, but love did not come so
easily. It took determination to win the hand of his wife, Dory,
who was reluctant to set aside her ambitions of becoming an
Their marriage is at once complex and ordinary, balancing the
rigors of long rehearsal sessions against the daily round of family
life with their two sons. Then suddenly the rhythm of their lives
is shattered when Ben falls victim to multiple sclerosis.
Stubbornly independent, Ben refuses to rely on others until
necessity forces him to see that there are things beyond his
control. Through a new closeness with his aging father, his older
son, and, most importantly, Dory, he learns to accept help and to
appreciate human frailty and affection.
As Ben's health declines, Dory is forced to resume her career
and compete in a world dominated by men, and to re-examine her
feelings and commitment to her husband. As their lives change, so
does their marriage, and Ben and Dory forge a new kind of love, a
fierce love that sustains them through everything.
Subjects: Language & Literature
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