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(Blue Notes #5)

4.13  ·  Rating details ·  215 ratings  ·  66 reviews
Cool kid violinist Roger Nelson doesn’t give a damn about anything. Wannabe conductor John Fuchs is awkward, effeminate, and just figuring out he’s gay. Despite their differences, they become friends—then lovers—and after college, they try to make it work. But it’s the 1970s, and Roger can’t bring himself to admit he’s gay. Worse, after his brother is killed in Vietnam, Ro ...more
ebook, 1st Edition, 296 pages
Published November 11th 2013 by Dreamspinner Press (first published November 10th 2013)
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Average rating 4.13  · 
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 ·  215 ratings  ·  66 reviews

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2.5 stars. Review completed March 4, 2014

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"Shostakovich wrote the symphony when things were pretty rough for him… The dissonances are all about that. Suffering."

Shostakovich -- Symphony No. 5

Let's not beat around the bush. I suffered through Encore because frustration paved the way through the entire plot. I'm fine dealing with problems (emphasis on dealing), not running away and leaving people frustrated and angry. Urgh. I've enjoyed Shira Anthony's books
❧A Bookish Berkeley Girl❧
Apr 21, 2015 rated it really liked it
4 Wow Really Stars!

This is how I felt after closing this book!

Ok....please allow me to explained the "OMG-WTF-SPECTURM " well, it is filled with lots, and lots of drama. I will place in a spoiler.

(view spoiler)
Nov 05, 2013 rated it liked it

3.5 stars

I kinda have a like / dislike relationship with this book.

There is something special and impactful when you read about a relationship that spans decades. I’ve had a few experiences with this and found it almost impossible to not WISH for the couple to get together, stay together, last together. After all, doesn’t the HEA that we all love (most of us, at least) mean FOREVER?

So I was engaged in the love that existed between John and Roger. I was rooting for them in everything throughout
LiveYourLife BuyTheBook
°•○★5 Stars ~ KAPOW!★○•°
A "Live Your Life, Buy The Book" Review

After reading this story, I was on my feet shouting “Bravo!” Encore is a stunning portrayal of the human condition. It is the poignant and at times heartbreaking love story of Roger and John, told over an epic 35 year chronology. Two people who found each other early in life, but who needed to explore, discover, disclose and embrace themselves as individuals before they were truly able to be together.

Guy’s didn’t tell each other
Shira Anthony
Of all the Blue Notes Series books so far, this one "got" to me the most. It made me cry (I never cry!). Maybe it's that I lived through the 1970s and 1980s and I saw what men like Roger and John went through. Maybe it's that I SO wanted their lives to be easier and happier. Yes, they finally get that happiness, but not before they've had to deal with so much heartache.

It was difficult remembering what things used to be like and working through what the characters would have done back then. SO m
Nov 03, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: mm-romance, musicians
3.6 stars. A very well written book which was powerfully emotional at times. I must admit that Roger was difficult to like as a character; I could understand his conflicting feelings, yet I refuse to accept how hurtfully he handled the situation and long-time relationship with John when they were younger. I assume Roger matured somewhat over the years, although he hardly offered any reparations or regrets for his rather selfish attitude. John's personal and professional journey was the highlight ...more
Oct 25, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This book tells the story of violinist Roger Nelson and aspiring conductor John Fuchs, two men who meet over their shared passion for music and fall in love with each other when they’re both in their teens. A perfect match, as different as they appear on the outside, theirs is a powerful connection of bodies, hearts and souls. But it’s the seventies, for one, where it’s hard for two men to live openly as lovers. And then, they’re both young and still quite immature in many ways and amenable to o ...more
Nov 30, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Where are more than 5 stars when you need them? Former opera singer Shira Anthony has outdone herself in this fifth Blue Notes novel.

This time the story arches to the ends of love--from young love to middle age romance, from living the expectations of family to becoming your own person.

ENCORE takes readers through the first thirty-some years of two musicians' lives, starting when they were young in school together until they were established in their careers. As each decade comes and goes, so
Jacq ~
Mar 24, 2014 rated it really liked it
OMG 5 Stars Hawt. And, I love this author but, the order of this series, I AM SO MAD AT! BUT

YES, AND WTF....READ IT ANYWAY, no matter what!

I am so MAD right now, but this book was so Groovy Cool!

This book, is really the beginning go it all. This was a very warm story, with hot smexy scenes. It took a while for them to come full circle. I am just glad they finally did. HFN ALMOST HEA! Very enjoyable read! I just could not put this book down Sigh... II have found MY chronological order fo
Kaje Harper
Nov 11, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: m-m
This is a bit of a rambling book, about two men who met as teenagers, fell in love and yet faced a host of obstacles to really being together. The story moves through episodes in their lives, as they come together and are pushed apart by needs, fears, accidents and family pressures. There are times when both men act in less than admirable ways, but Roger in particular tends to solve problems by taking the easy route out, and running away or ducking out on facing difficult situations.

John is the
Nov 02, 2013 rated it it was amazing
A passion for music draws Roger Nelson and John Fuchs into a fast friendship at their Ohio high school. John is a shy, oft stuttering, highly talented music student who has transferred in from a private school. His parents are divorcing, and he doesn’t see himself as cool or fitting in very well. He is rather floored when the popular and easy going Roger takes him under his wing. John wants to be a symphony conductor, Roger is a violinist. The pair became inseparable, practicing music and hangin ...more
Nov 09, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: mm-romance
I really enjoyed this story. Just the type of story I like to read: the plot reflects that life is not always a fairytale, the characters are not always perfect and the ending is not always sparkly rainbows.

The journey of Roger and John's love is rife with ups and downs throughout many years. They meet when they are 17 and become lovers on the night of graduating high school. They enjoy a loving semester together in college when an accident tears them apart. For the next 7 years they find a way
Jan 08, 2014 rated it it was amazing
My second book in the Blue Notes series and I can see why they have such a positive feedback.

After meeting John and Roger in prelude as adults, it was really interesting to see them young and just starting out in both career and love.

John I loved dearly, there was just something about him that pulled me in.

Roger was great at first, I understood him and his ways, with a mother like Miranda I'm just surprised he turned out as good as he did. But I must admit I found myself loosing a little affect
Dani Elle Maas
Nov 22, 2013 rated it really liked it
lovely to go back and read john and rogers story
but what a way they had to go and what a struggle still they proof that love indeed concures all
time, life and what ever more

beautiful edition to this amazing series !
Sophie [at] Book Suburbia
Nov 12, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I had to sit down an entire day just to figure out how to write this review because with no doubt, this is one of the hardest yet most beautiful reads I’ve encountered in my entire life.

This review of Encore, is dedicated to the memory of a dear friend of mine who passed away 3 years ago after battling a long war against AIDS. While reading this book, I pictured in John the few people who like me, loved and really cared for my friend who died not only because of this dreadful enemy, but also cau
Lena Grey
Oct 06, 2013 rated it it was amazing
“We had the right love at the wrong time. Those dreams of yours are...calling you away. I have no right to make you stay. But somewhere down the road...I know that heart of yours will come to see that you belong with me.” ~ Barry Manilow

John Fuchs and Roger Nelson of 'Encore' by Shira Anthony are soul mates. They find each other as teenagers, long before they know who they are or who they are capable of being. Their music, John's conducting and Roger's violin playing, is an important part of wha
Oct 26, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Why haven’t I read more books by Shira Anthony? Who is responsible for letting me get away with only ever reading one other book by her? You will be found and subjected to the proper punishment. This book was GREAT. I was a touch concerned because the only other Shira book I had read was the first in this series, but this one totally stood alone.

We meet Roger Nelson and John Fuchs in this story. It was a wonderful, angst, scary, fun, frustrating journey with them that spanned over thirty years.
Morgan  Skye
Oct 03, 2015 rated it it was amazing
We’ve met Roger and John as an established couple in the earlier books in this series. This is their (sometimes very painful) backstory.

Roger and John met in high school. They were friends first, then lovers. They went on to college together where they roomed and got even more involved. But Roger couldn’t handle being “gay” (especially in the 70s) so he pushed John away and went on to marry a woman.

John, meanwhile, did some self-destructive living in the 70s and 80s.

They cross paths over the yea
Tali Spencer
Sep 16, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites, m-m
This is such a lovely book. The series to which it belongs...Blue one of my favorites and I love how the stories of the men in these music-centered books have evolved. First love, one love. Yes, most have those themes we all cherish so well. This book is a story of enduring love, changing love, forever love. It's about second chances.

John and Roger meet in high school in the very early 1970s. The era plays a very small part in that part of their story and the focus is on being teenage
May 08, 2014 rated it liked it

This is a story I wanted to like, but honestly not a lot of this worked for me. This story spanned decades and told the story of cool kid violinist Roger and wannabe conductor and socially awkward John. My biggest obstacle for me was the lack of an emotional connection to Roger and John. And the fact that as a couple they were apart for most of this book. I didn’t like a lot of the things Roger does, he goes through most of his life not being able to admit he’s gay and not being able to stand up
2.5 Stars

This book follows Roger Nelson and John Fuchs from high school to mid-life. That, alone, appeals to me: following a couple through decades of their life together. Through the ups and downs, through thick and thin, through the ... you get the drift.

Here, I laughed, I cried, I threw my Kindle, and I swore (a lot). Most prevalent for me was frustration. I was extremely frustrated with Roger. And then I was extremely frustrated with John for putting up with Roger's - I'm sorry, I'm just go
Dec 04, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: m-m
So I will start of this review by saying I thought parts of this book were amazing and beautiful, while some parts of this book I have to be honest and say I really was not a huge fan of....

Roger and John meet at school. They start of as friends which slowly turns to more over time..

Now I thought this two men were honestly so beautiful together. They way they cared for each other and how you could really feel how much they love each other.
Which brings me to the part I was really not a huge fa
Avid Reader
Dec 29, 2015 rated it really liked it
Encore (Blue Notes #5) by Shira Anthony
4 stars
M/M Romance
I was given this book for an honest review by Inked Rainbow Reads

Hmmm, where to start. This was both good and horrible... I had a very strong love/hate relationship with these main characters. I loved how this book led us through their lives. But, I REALLY REALLY hated the mixed signals.

Roger and John are sweet, confused, clueless, in love, lost and all the different emotions that young boys go through.

There were so many different emotio
Barb ~rede-2-read~
Going into this story, I didn't think I'd like it. It was going to be "old history" and also I knew that the guys had had an on again/off again relationship based on what I'd read in previous books. But it turns out I was wrong-- I really enjoyed it immensely.

I became engaged in their early relationship but I kept waiting for the shoe to drop. What happened was stupid but having lived during that era (I'm aging myself here), I also know it could easily have happened. I really wanted to hate Rog
Nov 14, 2013 rated it really liked it
Another great installment in the Blue Notes series.
I have to say I wasn't looking forward so much to this one, with it starting in the 70's and working forward to the present - but it perhaps wrapped it's way round my heart more than the others.
The timings for Roger and Jon just always seemed both right and wrong at the same time, the manipulations of Miranda, Nate poor Nate, Roger caving to convention, Roger loosing his ability to play - all of it just tugging at the heart.
I'm not a musical per
Of this whole series, this one hit hardest. I was so devastated for Roger as I have a smaller understanding. I'm a quilter who is having eye problems, so I can sort of understand how it feels to lose something that is so much a part of your life. When Roger could no longer play it almost destroyed him. Sorry to say his mother was not very supportive or helpful.

It hurt that so much time was lost for these two but then maybe if they had been together Roger would have found it much harder to get pa
Lisa The Novel Approach
Dec 24, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Why haven’t I read more books by Shira Anthony? Who is responsible for letting me get away with only ever reading one other book by her? You will be found and subjected to the proper punishment. This book was GREAT. I was a touch concerned because the only other Shira book I had read was the first in this series, but this one totally stood alone.

See the entire review at The Novel Approach:
Frank Claudy
Dec 05, 2013 rated it it was amazing
What a bittersweet book. It is just like life, but fortunately it has a HEA. Once I started reading, I couldn't put it away. All these plans we make that get changed by life itself and wrong choices and others that mean well but do wrong. What a nice life Roger and John could have had if life itself hadn't come in their way. This was one of the books I might read more then once. ...more
Dec 22, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

Another wonderful addition to the Blue Notes series which is one of my favorite series out there.
I was always curious about Roger and John and their whole backstory. This book was tender,heartbreaking at times and had some laughs too.
Looking forward to the next book already.
Becky Condit
Dec 11, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Please see my complete review at

Favorite quote: “Mozart will never become pedestrian. Genius survives all the esoteric crap”
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Romance Readers R...: September Buddy Read- Encore 37 24 Sep 22, 2015 11:43PM  
Dreamspinner Press: Encore by Shira Anthony 1 7 Dec 08, 2013 04:44AM  

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Shira Anthony is a complete sucker for a happily-ever-after, and rarely reads or writes a story without one. Never a fan of instalove, Shira likes to write stories about real men with real issues making real relationships work.

In her last incarnation, Shira was a professional opera singer, performing roles in such operas as “Tosca,” “Pagliacci,” and “La Traviata,” among others. Her Blue Notes Ser

Other books in the series

Blue Notes (6 books)
  • Blue Notes (Blue Notes, #1)
  • The Melody Thief (Blue Notes, #2)
  • Aria (Blue Notes, #3)
  • Prelude (Blue Notes, #4)
  • Dissonance (Blue Notes, #6)

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