[PDF] The Gustav Sonata by Rose Tremain – Book, Kindle ePUB or DOC


  • Hardcover
  • 241
  • The Gustav Sonata
  • Rose Tremain
  • English
  • 27 March 2019
  • 9780393246698

10 thoughts on “The Gustav Sonata

  1. says:

    Click here to watch a video review of this book on my channel From Beginning to BookendGustav Perle lives with his mother in a small town in Switzerland While the horrors of the Second World War are still a dist

  2. says:

    A beautifully written albeit melancholy story about the friendship of two men who first met when they were young boys Gustav and Anton first meet in kindergarten when Anton arrives crying pitifully The teacher asks Gustav to take Anton under his care which he does offering the same advice his mother gives him and that is to master himselfThis is the first book I have read set in Switzerland and when the backstory of Gu

  3. says:

    He thought that if he had been some other boy he would have begun crying or at least whimpering by now but he wasn't he was Gustav Perle He was going to 'master himself' for the sake of his Mutti for the sake of his dead father for the sake of Anton who cried too often for the sake of a few beautiful things in the world like the sun on a balcony in Davos Gustav was 5 years old at the start of this novel He was pooroften cold hungr

  4. says:

    The Gustav SonataWhat I most appreciate about The Gustav Sonata is how Rose Tremain tells a story that is at times cruel and morally complex and accomplishes this with surprising clarity and elegant simplicity This is a nov

  5. says:

    This is only the third novel by Rose Tremain that I’ve read but I’m already tempted to add her name to my short list of favorite writers One of the things that I most admire about her as an author is her chameleon like ability to change her colors with every novel she writes She never repeats herself but s

  6. says:

    The predominant theme of this novel is the containment of strong emotion Whenever someone attempts to make his or her feelings known disappointment seems the inevitable conseuence Fitting then that it is set in a small town in Switzerland the home of neutrality However the country’s position of neutrality is s

  7. says:

    A tale of Friendship and Love that fell short for me as I felt it lacked a sense of time and place and the story was unconvincing for me What is the difference between friendship and Love? A stroy of two boys growing up in a a small town in Switzerland just after the World War II Gustav' s life is a lonely one until he meets Anton and a life long friendship develops I loved their first part of this novel as the characters and p

  8. says:

    This one was uite different from what I expected but in a good way The Gustav Sonata is told from three different perspectives Part one where Gustav is a small child and he meets his life long friend Anton But he learns some life less

  9. says:

    This is a really beautiful and fragile story about Gustav and Anton who become best friends as five year olds It's a story about their friendship but it's also a story about the twists and turns life can take and how your destiny can change when you choose the wrong path I loved how this book takes place in Switzerland and for the most part during the cold autumnal and wintry months It added to the cold and reflective atmosphere that is pr

  10. says:

    This is not a World War II novel Some of it is set during World War II but that isn't what the book is about I'm saying this because I came across several negative reviews that harped on this fact alone In Part I we are introduced to Gustav as a boy His mother tells him on page two to master himself and throughout the n

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Rose Tremain ✓ 3 download

The Gustav Sonata

Rd through the lives and careers of Gustav and Anton The Gustav Sonata explores the passionate love of childhood friendship as it's lost transformed and regained over a lifetime It's a powerful and deeply moving addition to the beloved oeuvre of one of our greatest contemporary novelist. This one was uite different from what I expected but in a good way The Gustav Sonata is told from three different perspectives Part one where Gustav is a small child and he meets his life long friend Anton But he learns some life lessons during this time that stick with him Being alone surviving at 10 years old Part two goes back in time where you learn how Gustav came to be and how his mother became the uncaring unloving mother that she is I must say that I found Gustav s father both horrible and beautiful On one hand he does the most rewarding selfless act that a human can do Then he shows how he puts himself first and how greedy and disgusting he is It s uite fascinating Finally the third part shows Gustav as an older man in his 50 s and bringing things back to his friend AntonEach part in the story was so different by tied in so nicely I liked them best in the order they appeared I could have heard so much of the antics of young Gustav and Anton This one is not really a story about WW2 There is a small part of it here but most of it takes place after the war A lovely book about the man Gustav and how life events shaped him I listened to this one via audio and the narration was greatI must add I do not recall reading any books set in Switzerland and it was simply wonderful Switzerland holds a special place in my heart as that is where I spent my honeymoon It was nice to have this one bring back the places Bern and the bear pits Glad that I finally read this one The title and cover really captivated me

summary ↠ eBook or Kindle ePUB ✓ Rose Tremain

Gustav Perle grows up in a small town in Switzerland where the horrors of the Second World War seem only a distant echo An only child he lives alone with Emilie the mother he adores but who treats him with bitter severity He begins an intense friendship with a Jewish boy his age talente. He thought that if he had been some other boy he would have begun crying or at least whimpering by now but he wasn t he was Gustav Perle He was going to master himself for the sake of his Mutti for the sake of his dead father for the sake of Anton who cried too often for the sake of a few beautiful things in the world like the sun on a balcony in Davos Gustav was 5 years old at the start of this novel He was pooroften cold hungry He lived with his mother Emilie in Mitteland Switzerland On hands and knees he helped his mother clean the grating of the Church of Sankt Johann when he wasn t in school He was a sweet gentle compassionate child He showed empathy toward his unhappy mother who was harsh and had a cold edge to her It was almost as if Gustav was loving his Mutti for two people holding the responsibility himself that somewhere deep inside her she loved him too Gustav s best friend was Anton Zwiebel They met in Kindergarten Anton s family was Jewish and he was the only child Anton s father was a banker so their family came from a much higher economic bracket His parents Adrianna and Armin had a wonderful marriage always a harmony between them and were aware of Gustav s loyalty of friendship to their son Antoneven when Anton didn t demonstrate the same type of friendship back In a way again Gustav held himself responsible for trusting deep down his friend Anton loved him alsoin the same way he held his mother Gustav was such a peacemaker and at peace with himselfit s as if EVERY expression his mother best friend were expressions of love regardless of theirself centeredness He didn t need to measure their behavior by his own experience He chose love and goodness It s how he saw the world Anton studied pianoa talented child prodigy who struggled with live performances These struggles carry over to every area of his life We can feel Anton s anger disappointment we can almost hear it through his music Anton counted on Gustav to be there for him when he wanted him or needed a friend Most of the time Gustav allowed it This novel is divided into three sections1 early childhood years of Gustav and Anton2 Emilie and Erich their relationship marriage and the loss of their first sonand its this section where we see the position Switzerland took during the war They were not letting Jewish refugees into the countrymany were being turned away Too much fear of German invasion if they did 3 Gustav and Anton into their 50 s and 60 s we learn about how their lives turned out limitations failed expectations and Gustav s closeness with Adrianna and Lottie A UOTE FROM THE MIDDLE SECTION referring to Erich Perle Gustav s father whom Gustav never metWouldn t other men even other policeman have been moved to falsify documents to break the law to save a man who had done nothing wrong Surely Erich s crime is rendered neutral by saving of souls Isn t it Erich was moved He was weakened by his compassion for a man his own age with a son named Daniel And surely one date falsification would never have been detected But the stack of false dates is going to come to light one way or another Erich now understands that he s put his career even his life in jeopardy Erich does loose his job as police officer He wishes to teach history to children give them an understanding of why their country Switzerland teach them why it must cling to neutrality Schools don t want to hire him Four schools turned Erich away because they didn t want a disgraced police officer with a trial pending working with children Fear of German invasion was always a daily fear so Erich knew minds were made up he d never get to teach He ends up with a night shift job to supervise cleaning and maintenance at the tram depot with scant wages He has also taken a loverLottie Erdman his friend s wife Which later gets complicated when Emilie comes back A LITTLE MORE ABOUT EMILIEGustav s motherMore and Emilie dreams of Charlie Chaplin and the palm lined boulevards of Hollywood far away where the war could never ever reach Emilie wonders how much she can endure living with her mother Irma She feels so much sorrow and bitterness She has lost a sonand blames Erich and the Jews In Emilie s eyes she lost everything because of the Jews Yet Emilie learned unhappiness from her mother at a young girl herself I think in many ways I felt most sorry for Emilie in this novel Sure she was a mean old crank but she lived with chronic daily suffering She smelled like stinky cheese from when she worked in the cheese factory her breath often smelled of aniseed and she was constantly drinking something She worried about money forced to take a second job at the Church on Saturdays scrubbing Her only happiness seems to be in a few good memories of the past and a few dreams into the future Reality not so pleasant ABOUT EVERYTHING ELSEWhew OKnow to REALLY LET GO and express myself I LOVED THIS NOVEL It s close to PERFECT Rose Tremain WOW I m a new fan I love the depth the layers there is soooo much to discuss in this novel I love the way you wrote itThe characters the contrast of the characters the value of what we learn from each one each of their strengths and their weaknesses This novel is hits on three levels our heartour headand our gut All three of these levels together make this book very special Absolutely wonderfulA MUST READThank You Netgalley WW Norton Company and Rose Tremain

summary The Gustav Sonata

D and mercurial Anton Zweibel a budding concert pianist The novel follows Gustav’s family tracing the roots of his mother’s anti Semitism and its impact on her son and his beloved friend Moving backward to the war years and the painful repercussions of an act of conscience and forwa. The Gustav SonataWhat I most appreciate about The Gustav Sonata is how Rose Tremain tells a story that is at times cruel and morally complex and accomplishes this with surprising clarity and elegant simplicity This is a novel about relationships in all its different forms about the heartbreak of unreuited love about a country caught in a moral dilemma but fundamentally this is a story about two lifelong friends and how against all odds their love endured the passage of time The year is 1947 in the small town of Matzlingen the atrocities of World War II feel remote to most of its citizens Switzerland one of the few countries that escaped a Nazi invasion is well known for its long standing policy of neutrality when it comes to foreign affairsThere are many reasons why Hitler never invaded this small European country chiefly among them its geographical location as well as its commitment to a non interventionist doctrine What Tremain skillfully inserts into this plot is Switzerland s decision during the late 1930 s to enforce stricter border security preventing refugees fleeing the Nazis from entering the country The Gustav Sonata is divided into three parts covering a span of 65 years Part one opens in the late 1940 s right as Gustav Perle and Anton Zweibel meet during their first day in kindergarten Although the boys couldn t be different or come from diverse backgrounds they instantly become friendsGustav is the oldest 5 year old you d ever meet He is terribly lonely a boy who lacks both emotional and physical nourishment His mother Emilie is bitter and incapable of showing the most basic signs of affection to his son Indeed some of the most heartbreaking moments in this novel happen as we see Gustav forced into a premature adulthood desperately trying to please his uncaring motherAnton on the other hand comes from an affluent family Armin and Adriana Zweibel a Jewish couple that escaped Germany before the war are loving and involved parents Anton is a piano prodigy and even at this young age his life revolves around music Unfortunately his mercurial personality would be a significant hindrance as he pursuits his dream of becoming a concert pianist For Gustav the reality of being fatherless and having such a neglectful mother has made him someone with a profound need to take care of others When a teacher sees Anton crying during that first day of school she asks Gustav to look after his new friend Unbeknown to them this is a role that Gustav will play throughout most of his lifeGustav and Anton become inseparable but Emilie doesn t entirely approves of their friendship He is a nice boy she tells him but of course he is a Jew What s a Jew asks Gustav Ah responds Emilie the Jews are the people your father died trying to save In part two which takes us back to the 1930 s we learn how Erick and Emilie met the mystery behind Erick s death and where Emilie s anti semitic sentiments come fromPart three moves forward to the 1990 s By now Gustav and Anton are middle aged still living in their hometown Gustav owns and manages a small hotel a career that perfectly suits his personality Anton is a music teacher and has reluctantly given up on his aspiration of becoming a professional musician Surprisingly life would give him one last chance at achieving his long term goalSo you might be asking why my 4 star rating instead of 5 Well I m glad you asked because although I thought this was a beautifully written story I do have a couple of issues My first point is that I felt that the emphasis on neutrality as a character trait that defines both some of the characters and Switzerland felt at times a little forced I do believe that the identity of one s own country greatly influences our moral compass but at times this part of the narrative felt somehow contrived and overdoneMy second issue is that for a novel that has its share of intimate moments and sexual banter I found that Gustav and Anton remained conspicuously asexual and perhaps most importantly aloof and disconnected from each other This might be a cultural issue or maybe it was a conscious decision by the author to convey the implausibility of such a relationship especially at that time In any case I truly missed a deeper emotional connection between these two charactersAnd yet is difficult not to like this novel as there are plenty of redeeming ualities to find here including Tremain s ability to convey the complexity of the moral dilemma faced by the Swiss people during the war without judging or oversimplifying the issueI recently listened to an interview where the author describes her novel as a story in a minor chord which I thought wonderfully summarizes its essence uiet and melancholic tender and painfully beautiful The audiobook is very well narrated by Dereck Perkins


About the Author: Rose Tremain

Rose Tremain's best selling novels have won many awards including the Baileys Women's Prize the Whitbread Novel of the Year the James Tait Black Memorial Prize and the Prix Femina Etranger Restoration the first of her novels to feature Robert Merivel was shortlisted for the Booker Prize She lives in Norfolk and London with the biographer Richard Holmes