The Songs by Charles Elton

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The novel’s formula is a blend of light, rather English humor, tragedy, and individual experiences of struggle, which, even when exposed and combined, don’t amount to quite enough substance. A thoughtful but cool second novel. The melody doesn’t linger on.
-Kirkus

Synopsis

THE SONGS follows Iz Herzl, famed political activist and protest singer, who has always told his children that it is the future not the past they should concentrate on. Now, at 80, an almost forgotten figure, estranged from everyone who has ever loved him, his refusal to look back on his extraordinary life leaves his teenage children, the brilliant Rose and her ailing younger brother, Huddie, adrift in myths and uncertainty that cause them to retreat into a secret world of their own.
 
Iz's other child, Joseph, a faltering Broadway songwriter 40 years older than Rose and Huddie, whose one disastrous meeting as a child with his father has left him lost and alone, is on a shocking and violent path to self-destruction. When the disparate members of the Herzl family begin to converge, the ambiguities at the heart of Iz Herzl's life begin to surface in a way that will change all of them.
 

About Charles Elton

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Charles Elton worked as a designer and editor in publishing before becoming a director of the Curtis Brown literary agency.  Since 1991 he has worked in television and for the past ten years has been the executive producer in drama at ITV. Among his productions are the Oscar-nominated short Syrup, The Railway Children, Andrew Davies’s adaptation of Northanger Abbey, and the recent series Time of Your Life.
 
Published June 6, 2017 by Other Press. 337 pages
Genres: Humor & Entertainment, Literature & Fiction. Fiction
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Kirkus

Above average
on Mar 21 2017

The novel’s formula is a blend of light, rather English humor, tragedy, and individual experiences of struggle, which, even when exposed and combined, don’t amount to quite enough substance. A thoughtful but cool second novel. The melody doesn’t linger on.

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