Wednesday, April 22, 2020

Simon the Fiddler: A Novel by Paulette Jiles

(Thank you to the publisher and TLC Book Tours for providing me with a copy of this book!)
about book:

The critically acclaimed, bestselling author of News of the World and Enemy Women returns to Texas in this atmospheric story, set at the end of the Civil War, about an itinerant fiddle player, a ragtag band of musicians with whom he travels trying to make a living, and the charming young Irish lass who steals his heart.

In March 1865, the long and bitter War between the States is winding down. Till now, twenty-three-year-old Simon Boudlin has evaded military duty thanks to his slight stature, youthful appearance, and utter lack of compunction about bending the truth. But following a barroom brawl in Victoria, Texas, Simon finds himself conscripted, however belatedly, into the Confederate Army. Luckily his talent with a fiddle gets him a comparatively easy position in a regimental band.

Weeks later, on the eve of the Confederate surrender, Simon and his bandmates are called to play for officers and their families from both sides of the conflict. There the quick-thinking, audacious fiddler can’t help but notice the lovely Doris Mary Dillon, an indentured girl from Ireland, who is governess to a Union colonel’s daughter.

After the surrender, Simon and Doris go their separate ways. He will travel around Texas seeking fame and fortune as a musician. She must accompany the colonel’s family to finish her three years of service. But Simon cannot forget the fair Irish maiden, and vows that someday he will find her again.

Incandescent in its beauty, told in Paulette Jiles’s trademark spare yet lilting style, Simon the Fiddler is a captivating, bittersweet tale of the chances a devoted man will take, and the lengths he will go to fulfill his heart’s yearning.

my thoughts:

What a book! I absolutely LOVED Simon the Fiddler by Paulette Jiles. A historical fiction novel set during the Civil War, but felt more like a western story with its romance and adventure - talk about a gem of a story. It was just so good to dive into book chock full of excellent writing, vivid characters, historical details, and an engaging story. I truly enjoyed the time I spent reading Simon the Fiddler.

Simon is all about music. He's a musician who has evaded being drafted for war, until he finds himself a part of a brawl in Texas. The next thing you know he is signed up for the Confederate Army.  The war is near its end, so Simon isn't stationed to be serving for that much longer.  And his fiddle skills position him to land a cushy slot in the army - regimental band. Its during a performance for officers that Simon notices a young lady named Doris. The two wind up going off to different places once the war ends - Doris moves along with the family she works for, whilst Simon heads off to travel around Texas as a musician.  Smitten with Doris, Simon is bent on coming across the young lady once more. And this is the story of their lives and love. Its gripping, emotional, and unputdownable. Such a terrific book!!

I would happily recommend Simon the Fiddler to fans of Paulette Jiles and anyone looking for their next great read - you will fall in LOVE with this book!!

Here's the link to the TLC Book Tour schedule for: Simon the Fiddler
Thank you to the publisher and TLC Book Tours for providing me with a copy of this book!


bermudaonion said...

Every single review I've read of this has been a rave. It's going on my wish list.

Lark said...

I loved Jiles' previous novel and am really looking forward to reading this one, too. (If and when my library ever opens back up.)

Sara Strand said...

I adored News of the World so I can't wait to get into this one. Thank you for being on this tour! Sara @ TLC Book Tours