Author: Emily Gould
Genre: Women’s Fiction
Publisher: Avid Reader Press
Publication Date: April 14, 2020
Book Description: Have you ever wondered what your mother was like before she became your mother, and what she gave up in order to have you?
It’s the early days of the new millennium, and Laura has arrived in New York City’s East Village in the hopes of recording her first album. A songwriter with a one-of-a-kind talent, she’s just beginning to book gigs with her beautiful best friend when she falls hard for a troubled but magnetic musician whose star is on the rise. Their time together is stormy and short-lived—but will reverberate for the rest of Laura’s life.
Fifteen years later, Laura’s teenage daughter, Marie, is asking questions about her father, questions that Laura does not want to answer. Laura has built a stable life in Brooklyn that bears little resemblance to the one she envisioned when she left Ohio all those years ago, and she’s taken pains to close the door on what was and what might have been. But neither her best friend, now a famous musician who relies on Laura’s songwriting skills, nor her depressed and searching daughter will let her give up on her dreams.
Funny, wise, and tenderhearted, Perfect Tunes explores the fault lines in our most important relationships, and asks whether dreams deferred can ever be reclaimed. It is a delightful and poignant tale of music and motherhood, ambition and compromise—of life, in all its dissonance and harmony.
Rating: 4 1/2 Stars
Review: Perfect Tunes is almost a perfect story about a very imperfect woman. Over 15 years you will meet and get to know Laura. When she was younger she writes what she thinks is the perfect song and she spends the next years never quite living up to that and that really has an effect on her life.
Laura moves to New York City when she is 22. She quickly meets Dylan a budding musician himself, and of course she is totally in love with him from the start. Dylan’s career is starting to take off, along with his use of alcohol and drugs. Month’s after Dylan dies in a tragic accident and Laura is left to pick up the pieces and to raise a daughter that she does not even realize she is pregnant with until after Dylan’s death.
Over the next 14 years, you will see Laura was meant to be a mother, hardships and all. She virtually gives up any hope of being a musician to raise Marie, who she loves more than anything. Laura struggles to pay rent, and just keep up, but I don’t think she would trade any of it. Laura eventually meets Matt and they marry, and while it is not perfect, it is what she needs.
Fourteen years later, Marie is fighting her own demons. We start to understand that she might take a little more after her father than her mother thinks. She wants to learn more about her Dad, which leads to the apex of this story,
This is an extremely respective novel about motherhood and how we still struggle with the idea of living our dreams, while doing the best they can for their families. Simple and beautiful.
Thank you NetGalley and Avid Reader Press for an Advanced Reader’s Copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.