Novel Approach reviews ‘The Orphan’s Song’ by Lauren Kate

“Man is least himself when he talks in his own person. Give him a mask, and he will tell you the truth.” — Oscar Wilde

The desire to understand who we are and what we will become sends two protagonists down two very different courses in “The Orphan’s Song.” Grab a mask and explore the canals of Venice in our latest read.

The Orphan’s Song by Lauren Kate

Lauren Kate paints a vibrantly musical tale in her latest novel, “The Orphan’s Song.” The story is told from the perspectives of Violetta and Mino, two orphans living at the Hospital of the Incurables during the 1700s. Both orphans are deeply passionate about music and seek an escape from the hospital where they were raised. Mino wants to live happily ever after with Violetta, but she wants to join the Incurables’ exclusive chorus and spend her life singing. After life separates the two musicians, the winding canals of Venice pull the two back into each other’s orbit.

Violetta’s desire to sing and to live a life outside the constrictions of the Incurables leads her to perform at a club in disguise. Mino’s grief at losing Violetta leads him down a meandering path and to a new love.

Kate’s writing echoes with the musicality of Mino’s violin as she weaves her story around Venice’s masked grandeur. Readers will find themselves enchanted not only by Mino and Violetta’s tangled story, but by the beauty of another time.

From the book jacket…

“Venice, 1736. When fate brings Violetta and Mino together on the roof of the Hospital of the Incurables, they form a connection that will change their lives forever. Both are orphans at the Incurables, dreaming of escape. But when the resident Maestro notices Violetta’s voice, she is selected for the Incurables’ world famous coro, and must sign an oath never to sing beyond its church doors.”

If you enjoy…

Readers who enjoy the sweeping descriptions of Venice in “The Orphan’s Song” might also enjoy exploring Elizabeth Gilbert’s “City of Girls.” Gilbert’s latest novel will transport readers to the glitter and glitz of 1940s Manhattan.