Book - 1998
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Jackie Kay's mesmerizing and powerfully moving first novel is about the extraordinary life and seeming dissolution of a family -- about the boundaries of identity and the essential nature of love.      At its center is Joss Moody, a celebrated jazz trumpeter who created music that convinced everyone who heard it that they knew the man who made it. But Joss's death has proved them all wrong: Joss Moody lived his life inside a stunning secret. His wife, Millie, had known about it. But their adopted son, Colman, now in his thirties, has just learned of it. With everything he understood about himself and his family thrown into question, Colman forms an uncomfortable alliance with a journalist intent on telling Joss's story her own way. Millie, grieving and besieged by the press, secludes herself in their home in a small Scottish village, sinking into the aching solace of memory.      Their two brilliantly realized voices -- one revisiting the past for comfort, the other for answers -- are interwoven with the equally evocative voices of Joss's drummer, of the doctor who discovered Joss's secret, of the funeral director who hid it for the last time, of the registrar of death certificates, and of the journalist. Together they reveal the startling and poignant story of Joss and Millie: how a complex, dazzling lie became the foundation for a family, a life, and a rare, unshakable love.      Starkly beautiful, emotionally charged, and wholly unexpected, Trumpet delves into the most intimate workings of the human heart and mind. It is a bravura performance and a triumphant debut.
Publisher: New York : Pantheon Books, c1998
Edition: 1st American ed
ISBN: 9780375405099
Branch Call Number: KAY
Characteristics: 278 p. ;,22 cm


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May 21, 2014

Guardian Fiction Prize 1998. This is a good, solid novel about a black, Scottish jazz musician and how his son deals with his death and revelations about his father's identify. It is inspired by a similar story of an American jazz musician. It is suggested that one reason women hid their gender was that they did not have the option to be musicians in mid-century America and Europe although the motivation was more complex than this. There is a very good portrait in the book of a so called journalist preying on friends and family to write a sensationalist book. Fundamentally, this is a story about love and identity.

Aug 01, 2012

After his death, it's revealed to the world that the famous male trumpet player Joss Moody turns out to have been female. Mostly a novel about the way his son grapples with this truth, the story is told through everyone's voice except for the deceased (save a few slightly-redeeming pages). The son's journey toward understanding his father is painful to read, but also somewhat powerful. Overall the book fell short of moving me, even felt frustrating at times, but was an interesting read.

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Mar 03, 2015

Clbluca thinks this title is suitable for All Ages


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