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The String Quartet

3.86  ·  Rating details ·  85 Ratings  ·  56 Reviews
Loss can be tough to handle, but a young girl named Dawn Arterberry has made a fresh start. She has a new school and a new cello to match. That is, mostly new. . . With her four new friends, Dawn tries to solve the mystery that has taken over her life. What is the Rheingold? Who is the Charmed Duke? And what does the grandfather she never knew have to do with any of it?

ebook, Second Edition, 297 pages
Published July 17th 2014 (first published October 11th 2013)
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Rating details
Sort: Default
Nov 02, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: readin2013
Every now and then you come across a just-right book. The String Quartet was a just-right book for me. I found it to be the perfect blending of storytelling and characterization, of fantasy and mystery. At its simplest, I suppose, you could say that it was a story about a magical cello rediscovered in a tumbling-down barn. That would be accurate but not do the book full justice.

Dawn Arterberry is the heroine of The String Quartet. She has recently moved with her father to Vermont; the two are s
L.R. S.
Nov 12, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The String Quartet
by Dan Hupalo

Written from an omniscient POV that is as intelligent as it is descriptive, The String Quartet is a fantasy to sink your teeth into. Though the plot revolves around a group of eighth-graders (the interaction and dialogue rings true to their age), I feel it wouldn’t be justified to pigeonhole the novel in the middle grade genre as its complexity renders it a story to be enjoyed by a wider spectrum of ages.

Shuttling back and forth from our contemporary world to a ma
DNF 30%
I was approach by the author and asked wether I wanted to read and review his ebook version of this book. I read the blurb and this sounded really promising and up my street.
The writing was very well written and flowed really well. This book isn't bad I really just could not get into this book I think it is just me. I've been trying for months to get into this but I think after three months I have to put it down.
Just not my cup of tea I'm sure many people will love this. As it is a well
Nov 06, 2014 rated it liked it
Overall a good book. I found the first few chapters slightly confusing as you started in WW2 and then jumped forward fifty years. The book did not grab me immediately and took a while to get into the story. I was able to read it with breaks in between and still follow the story line.

I did like the story line and the adventures the 4 main characters had were suitable for their ages. The use of classical instruments as the conduit for the magic was different.  The author includes a great deal of
Sep 29, 2014 rated it it was ok
I received an arc of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.

I read this book in one sitting. It was an okay quick read. The writing is very good, but I don't think this book was for me. THAT'S NOT SAYING IT ISN'T A GOOD BOOK I'm just saying it wasn't my type of book. I enjoy a good ya book but this was a little too much on the young side. I think if I was a few years younger I would have rated this book a little higher.

The character are strong and the story starts off that
Apr 15, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: r2r
It was more than ok read. A bit confusing at the beginning but then the story really picked up the tempo in middle. The writer has done a good job in wavering the imaginary world and his writing Is good. The story has main character Dawn but It really revolves around four teenagers. Dawn,Abigail,Elliot and Davis, the string quarter. Dawn has a Cello ,the strings of which are made by a magical element. When played in harmony it transported them to another world where the duke wants to capture the ...more
Aug 01, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The String Quartet was a very interesting read.
The storyline was well thought, and the used wording was excellent. The first chapter was a bit confusing, but I caught up pretty quickly. The characters were well developed. I would definitely recommend. The book in general was great!
Nov 14, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: ya-fic
Rating for this book - 4.5 stars.

I really enjoyed 'The String Quartet' even though fantasy isn't usually my kind of thing.

Dawn Arterberry is just about to start eighth grade at a boarding school. She and her father, Wilbur, have been struggling along together after the death of Dawn's mother, something neither of them have recovered from. Dawn's dad thinks it would be safer for her to be at a boarding school as he works as a doctor at the hospital and can't always be around to keep an eye on her
Sep 08, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Wendy by: Goodreads Giveaways
Shelves: mystery, magic, ya
"The String Quartet" which I won through Goodreads Giveaways is a blend of science fiction and mystery that begins when Dawn Arterberry and her father move to Windsor, Vermont after the death of her mother. Enrolled at St. Sigfrid Preparatory Academy a boarding school on Lake Umbagog, Dawn isn't sure she's going to fit in even though her new friend Elliot Velasquez attends.

Her confidence bolstered by her grandfather's cello that she found in his dilapidated barn she joins a stringed quartet at
Aug 17, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: magic, mystery
"The String Quartet" which I won through Goodreads Giveaways is a blend of science fiction and mystery that begins when Dawn Arterberry and her father move to Windsor, Vermont after the death of her mother. Enrolled at St. Sigfrid Preparatory Academy a boarding school on Lake Umbagog, Dawn isn't sure she's going to fit in even though her new friend Elliot Velasquez attends.

Her confidence bolstered by her grandfather's cello that she found in his dilapidated barn she joins a stringed quartet at
Amanda Thompson
There's also a video review!

When Dawn found the old cello in the dilapidated barn, she thought she had scored that jackpot. Now she could join the music class at her new school. She would be able to practice again. But when she begins to play, things happen. Magical things. The music of Dawn's cello and her string quartet draw them into another world.
Using music as a form of magic is a beautiful and fresh concept in this genre. As someone who's always loved the idea of playing music, it gave m
Nov 25, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
'The String Quartet' is a heart-warming and exciting debut novel from Mr Dan Hupalo. This novel had just the perfect amount of historical, fantasy and friendship, I really believe this could be read by people of all ages and everyone would equally love it.

The book tells the story of Dawn who has started a new school after her mother passes away, before coming to her new school she decided she would start playing the cello again but little did she know that this cello she found would throw her in
Amy D
Aug 12, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: on-my-bookshelf
First of all I'd like to thank the author Dan Hupalo for giving me the chance to read one of his books in exchange for a honest review.

The book was good but not one of the best books I've read. The beginning of the book was really interesting and then it slowly went down and then slowly climbed its way back up at the end.

The concept of the book was good but for me the characters were a little bit dull. To me, their only purpose in the book was to play their instrument. I didn't really understa
Nov 13, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: r4r
I received a copy of this in exchange for an honest review.

4.5 rounded to 5.

The String Quartet is a beautifully written story about four 14-year-olds who end up in another world. Before leaving for boarding school, Dawn finds an old cello that had once belonged to her grandfather. While her and her string quartet are practicing, the cello takes them into a new unpredictable world.

The beginning of the book is the story of Dawn's grandfather and his best friend in the military. It took me a bit t
Aug 06, 2014 rated it really liked it
First of all, I would like to thank author Dan Hupalo for giving me a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

My favorite thing about this book was the unique plot. It took me a while to get into it in the beginning, but once I got past the first couple of chapters, I was good. You get just enough backstory in the beginning to get you through the whole book, but I liked how it all tied up at the end. Like many reviewers have said, the plot does weakens a little in the mi
Sarah Belcher
Mar 08, 2015 rated it liked it
This book had a very interesting storyline, which intrigued me throughout reading it. It also had several plot twists which I did not see coming, which I appreciated because I commonly figure out plot lines early on, but this one kept me guessing a bit.

I also liked how the first chapter started out in a totally different place and time to set up the story, then fast-forwarded to the main setting. However, the book didn't follow up that initial story line with sufficient details later on to conn
Dec 11, 2015 rated it liked it
I was provided with a complimentary copy of this book, through Reading Deals, so I could give an honest review. I read books from all reading levels and enjoy a good book, but unfortunately this book missed the mark. For the most part, I enjoyed to the book except for the constant grammatical errors and misused words. I know it is impossible to spot every error, but there were multiple simple elementary errors throughout the book. Also, I believe the story lacked a bit of substance. ***POSSIBLE ...more
~ Rose ~ ☯Desert Rose❀

"...The String Quartet tells of an adventure appropriate for readers of all ages." This quoted description fits fairly well.

Mixing mythology with a realistic, historical fiction feel, this story takes it's reader on a magical adventure. Following a young girl through a fantasy kept this book clean, innocent, and fun. The suspense created by the mystery kept my attention, and held on til the last page.

While it is a book appropriate for readers of all ages, I would say it fits best with middle sch
Nov 20, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The String Quartet is one of the most interesting YA novels I have read by far. Just when you think you have the story figured out, it shifts into another plot twist that will make you confused in a good way. I have to say that is one of the indications of a good book for me, because I enjoy the element of surprise in a material. I've given it four stars because of well-characterized leads that are relatable in terms of personality and experiences. The myth referencing is also a smart inclusion, ...more
Heather D
May 02, 2015 rated it liked it
A decent quick read book. It did take me a little bit to get into. I was a little lost at the beginning of the book thinking it was going to be a more serious world war II book with an animated cover. . . I did eventually see the connect with the rest of the book. It was a quick read - as in the story was pretty quick to unravel and there wasn't a ton of back details and thick story development. There were some very wordy distracting parts when I just wanted the story to continue without the ext ...more
Feb 05, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-favorites
I was provided with a free copy of this book so I could give an honest review.

WOW. I can honestly say that I was not expecting to be upset when the book ended. I wanted the book to continue. I need more!

I slowing became entwined with Dawn as she traversed through life. My imagination ran with each scene, feeling as Dawn and then Abigail, seeing the experiences from difference points of view. It was interesting to see the connections weave throughout the storyline and how the characters learn in
Carli Anderson
Feb 04, 2016 rated it it was ok
"The String Quartet," by Dan Hupalo, is written for elementary to junior high age kids. The story follows four 8th grade students through their adventures traveling between worlds. A magic cello and the quartet's powerful music is what powers their adventures. The group of 13-year olds has to learn to harness the magic to save a friend, and ultimately a kingdom. The story itself is pretty good. The author has good imagery and his writing flows, but someone desperately needs to do some editing. T ...more
Nov 01, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: finished-in-2015
The author was kind enough to approach me and offer a free e-copy of his book for an honest review. I'm very grateful to him.

The String Quartet is a story about a cello found in a barn by an unsuspecting girl named Dawn who is bound for boarding school. There is more to this cello than meets the eye. She takes it with her to the boarding school. She and her friends seem to be settling into normal life at the boarding school until, one day, something happens and changes everything.

This definitely
Oct 20, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
THE STRING QUARTET is loosely based on the Ring Cycle, which features four students who stumble upon the Rhinegold and must find a way to defeat The Charmed Duke at his own game. Dawn Arterberry is lonely, having lost her mother being sent off to a boarding school by her father. Before she leaves, she finds her grandfather’s cello in the old barn out back. She doesn’t realize it will lead her and three other schoolmates on a wild adventure through time & space to a different realm with diffe ...more
Apr 26, 2015 rated it liked it
This book follows the story of a 14-year old girl whose mother has passed away and now she is trying to adapt to a new school and meeting new people. She stumbles on a "magic" cello that takes her and some of her new friends on a grand adventure. I thought it was really neat how the author spans the story from the first chapter happening in World War II and jumps forward to present day and then later bridges that gap. The story showcases growing friendships, practicing repeatedly to get better a ...more
Todd Kinsey
Nov 21, 2014 rated it liked it
I really struggled how to rate this book because it just didn't speak to me at all. Let me start by saying that The String Quartet is a well written Young Adult novel geared towards teen girls. Unlike so many other self-published novels, Hupalo's book is well edited but probably would've benefited from some story assistance. If could've given 3.5 stars I would have, unfortunately that's not an option.

Author Dan Hupalo has a fertile imagination and I hope he continues to write because he is not l
Jeff Schuster
Oct 28, 2014 rated it it was amazing
After I got started reading The String Quartet, I could not put it down. I am not a veracious reader, but ended up reading this book in a few days as I could not wait to read the rest of the story. If you enjoyed the Harry Potter series, you will definitely love this book. There are some parallels to Harry Potter… but The String Quartet is its own story with some amazing twists and turns. The author started several mini-stories in the book that all merged together nicely at the end. The characte ...more
Jun 13, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: arc, three-stars
The author provided a copy of the book for me to read in exchange for a review.
I actually liked the concept of this book, but the style just wasn't for me. This is geared towards a more YA audience, but all ages may like this book.
The whole book felt like it was revolving around playing an instrument, and, like many other reviews said, the grammar wasn't the best it could be. The characters kind of lacked development in my opinion. The story was also a little slow in the beginning. The ending,
Lorralei Umbrell-hoerner
This book is different then what I am used to reading when it comes to young adult. The first half of the book was really good. I liked the story and where it was going. I wanted to give it 3 1/2 stars, but I rounded it up to 4. After the first half of the book, I got lost and I felt like I was missing something from the story. Some of the paragraphs seemed like "after thoughts" or more "random thoughts". After I got through that lull of feeling like what is going on and being lost, the last qua ...more
Dec 19, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The String Quartet is a story told from the perspective of Dawn, a teenager who had recently moved to Vermont following the death of her Mother. But the story starts out very differently. The twists and turns of the plot often leave you guessing. The characters are well developed and believable. I loved the writing which was, at times, positively lyrical. This book would be a good choice for the young adult reader as well as those who enjoy a bit of fantasy/mystery. My only criticism would be th ...more
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Dan Hupalo is a biologist, illustrator, and author who lives in New York City.

He writes novels and runs a webcomic availble at

Check out his art blog at
More about Dan Hupalo

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