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Bluebeard; a musical fantasy   By: (1856-1923)

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Bluebeard; a Musical Fantasy is a charming and whimsical tale that truly captivates the reader from beginning to end. Written by Kate Douglas Smith Wiggin, this enchanting book takes readers on a journey through the fantastical world of Bluebeard, a mythical character known for his dark secrets.

One of the most remarkable aspects of this book is the way it seamlessly combines elements of music, fantasy, and adventure. The author's writing style is melodious and rhythmic, evoking a sense of harmony that perfectly mirrors the protagonist's musical endeavors. Wiggin's imaginative storytelling transports readers to a magical realm where music becomes a language of its own.

The characters in Bluebeard are skillfully developed and highly relatable. Beatrice, the main character, is a talented young pianist whose world is forever changed when she discovers a mysterious key that unlocks an enchanted room. With each chapter, the reader is taken on a journey of self-discovery alongside Beatrice, witnessing her growth, courage, and unwavering determination.

The plot itself is a delightful blend of mystery, adventure, and self-realization. As Beatrice unravels the secrets of Bluebeard's past, readers are drawn into a world of hidden passages, magical instruments, and forbidden knowledge. The novel cleverly integrates themes of darkness and light, exploring the duality of human nature and the transformative power of music.

Wiggin's vivid descriptions breathe life into Bluebeard's enchanting world, painting a vivid picture for the reader's imagination. From the lush landscapes to the intricate details of the musical instruments, every scene is meticulously crafted, immersing readers in a rich and visually stunning environment.

Furthermore, the author's profound knowledge and love for music are evident throughout the book. Each musical piece mentioned in the story is carefully selected and described, allowing readers to appreciate the significance of music in the characters' lives. This deep connection between music and storytelling adds an extra layer of depth and engagement to the narrative.

While Bluebeard; a Musical Fantasy may not be a widely known book, it is a hidden gem that deserves recognition. Its seamless blending of music, fantasy, and adventure creates a reading experience unlike any other. Kate Douglas Smith Wiggin's masterful storytelling and enchanting prose make this book a must-read for anyone who loves music, fantasy, or simply appreciates a well-crafted tale.

First Page:


A Musical Fantasy

by Kate Douglas Wiggin

Dedication: To my friend Walter Damrosch Master of the art form so irreverently treated in these pages. Kate Douglas Wiggin


More than a dozen years ago musical scholars and critics began to illuminate the musical darkness of New York with lecture recitals explanatory of the more abstruse German operas. Previous to this era no one had ever thought, for instance, of unfolding the story, or the " Leit motive " (if there happened to be any!), in "The Bohemian Girl," "Maritana," or "Martha." These and many other delightful but thoroughly third class works unfolded themselves as they went along, to the entire satisfaction of a public so unbelievably care free, happy, thoughtless, childlike, uninstructed, that it hardly seems as if they could have been our ancestors.

Wagner changed all this at a single blow. One could no longer leave one's brains with one's hat in the coat room when the "Nibelungen Ring"appeared! Learned critics, pitifully comprehending the fathomless ignorance of the people, began to give lectures on the "Ring" to large audiences, mostly of ladies, through whom in course of time a certain amount of information percolated and reached the husbands the somewhat circuitous, but only possible method by which aesthetic knowledge can be conveyed to the American male... Continue reading book >>

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