It took a couple of chapters to grok with Jace. The book is written in first person and Jace is justifiably furious with his mother. He is Afro American in a true sense, his Irish dad split before he was born, his mom, a beautiful black woman get twitchy and moves every few months.
Jace is always the new kid with the cello (kind of hilarious). He possesses immense talent that his mother and brother have nurtured despite their personal demons. Now Jace has been uprooted to Seattle. He and his mom are staying with gruff Aunt Bernice. The story gets good when we realize that there is more than meets the eye with the story and the characters. Two music (specifically string) geeks, Bernice, Sir Lionel, Jace himself and his brother. As a black boy he is pigeonholed numerous times; on the other hand, he puts others in boxes and distances himself with his own prejudices.
Jace does not have an easy road, but this move to Seattle may be one that helps him bust out of his box and let others emerge from theirs as well.