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Night Music

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3.84  ·  Rating details ·  537 ratings  ·  132 reviews
A romantic comedy that sweeps you up with breezy writing and canny social commentary, set behind the scenes of the classical music world during one hot, anything-can-happen, New York City summer

Ruby has always been Ruby Chertok future classical pianist, heir to the Chertok family legacy, daughter of renowned composer Martin Chertok. But after bungling her audition for the
...more
Hardcover, 400 pages
Published March 19th 2019 by Dial Books
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Average rating 3.84  · 
Rating details
 ·  537 ratings  ·  132 reviews


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Chelsea (chelseadolling reads)
Mar 18, 2019 rated it really liked it
Recommended to Chelsea by: Madalyn (Novel Ink)
I really, really enjoyed this! It was incredibly well written and WAY more complex than I expected it to be. I thought this was just going to be a swooney summer romance, and tbh it was, but it also ended up talking a lot about privilege and racial inequality in the classic music world and I really appreciated that. This book also has A LOT of musical elements that went far over my head (similar to the sciencey bits in The Martian), but I still could not bring myself to put this down and I read ...more
Madalyn (Novel Ink)
This review originally appeared on Novel Ink.

I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

ACTUAL RATING: 4.5 stars

When I first heard about Night Music, I thought I must have been dreaming. A YA contemporary by one of my favorite authors in that genre, centering around teenagers pursuing classical music careers over the course of one New York City summer? This book seemed made for me. And while Night Music
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Mackenzi
Sep 12, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
hello adorable classical music rom com of my dreams.
Anna Luce
★★★★✰ 4.25 stars

A delightful and thoughtful summer romance meets the classical music world in Jenn Marie Thorne's criminally underrated Night Music.
Ruby, the seventeen-year-old daughter of the renowned composer Martin Chertok, has always felt the pressure of her name. However, unlike her older siblings, who have all embarked on successful musical careers, Ruby messes up her audition for Amberley School of Music. Having dedicated the last ten years of her life to her piano, Ruby struggles to en
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Eilonwy
3-1/2 stars
Ruby learned the truth at 17: In a family of musical geniuses (world-renowned conductors, composers, instrument players), she's a talentless squib whose abilities are merely passable. Without the future she's spent her whole life anticipating, she's at a big, lost, very loose end. But things look up a little when she reconnects with the former best friend she dumped to get serious about her music, and when Oscar, a verifiable musical genius if ever there was one, moves into her fam
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Jane (It'sJaneLindsey)
This is a must-read for anyone who’s a musician or just fiercely loves music. As I’m neither of those things, I had some trouble connecting to this story. The discussions of privilege and inequality in exclusive institutions like classical music were necessary and well done, and I’m intrigued to read more from this author.
Jenn
Dec 07, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)
Shelves: by-me
I like it. Full review to come. ;)
Emma
Sep 30, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shame on me for thinking this book was going to be just a cute summer romance, it was so much more than I expected and I totally loved it!

Ok, it does have a romantic relationship at its core, not gonna lie, but it also deals with various serious and important themes, such as privilege, racism and anxiety. I really appreciated how Oscar and Ruby actually talked about stuff and helped each other out.

Seeing a character like Ruby who doesn't have her life figured out was pretty realistic and I enj
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Lauren
Oct 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Beautiful, heartfelt, aware, and raw, NIGHT MUSIC is a melody I never want to leave my head.
Reyes
Apr 06, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2019, cute, ya, romance, 4stars
Actual rating: 3.5 stars

I picked up this book because I was promised "To all the boys I've loved before"-levels of cuteness, and it did deliver, but in my opinion this lacked the charm of Lara Jean & co. I loved Ruby's struggle to find her own path outside her family and outside her relationship with Oscar, but everything regarding her dysfunctional and astonishingly talented family was way too much, and the racial issues promised in the blurb (that were the other reason why I was interested in
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Lee Kelly
Jul 24, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I am a huge fan of Jenn Marie Thorne's books, and her latest is stunning. Our MCs Ruby and Oscar are positively swoon worthy (my favorite ships are full of heart AND humor, and these two have both in spades). And the world they inhabit - the classical music circle of New York - gives this book a lush, sensorial layer of summer dreaminess.

Part romance, part coming-of-age, NIGHT MUSIC seamlessly blends the two into a moving, honest look at what it means to love someone else, and what it ultimatel
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thi
Mar 23, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
ok I don’t know where to begin

the blurb is a little wordy and that’s also reflected in the rest of the book’s writing, imo it’s not dragging per se just very informative but still enjoyable, it just took me a lot longer to get through than normally

essentially ruby feels talentless and unmotivated in her family of stars and is constantly surrounded by people expected more from her, and I think that’s something everyone can relate to, to some degree and I personally felt so much for her especial
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Kali Cole
Dec 02, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: five-star-reads
This novel was a huge hassle to get through, but the experience was worth it. It is amazing when music is represented vividly in a novel to the point where you can visualize it without hearing it. This definitely shined bright on diversity and the distinction between stereotypes and reality. I hope everyone looks into the book if they are musical lovers or feel misrepresented by the people around them.
Danielle (Life of a Literary Nerd)
3.5 Stars

This was not the fluffy, happy contemporary I was expecting. Don't get me wrong, there's a lot of happy moments and an adorable romance but the characters are dealing with some weightier topics like classism, racism, anxiety, privilege. It was an enexpected, yet enjoyable read.

Vee
Jul 22, 2019 rated it really liked it
One of the best (and sometimes worst) qualities of a good book is that they make you feel things.
And, oh boy, this book made me feel angry, upset and hopeful in so many different levels.
Ruby is a seventeen-year-old driven by her family's legacy to succeed in the world of classical music. Her last name is a brand that people use to define her. I could not understand why she let people treat her like she did not matter (especially her mother) or like someone who was only there to serve or help th
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Lauren R.
Phew, that was such a surprise and kind of a rollercoaster? I'm not a music-themed book kind of gal usually but wanted to push myself out of the comfort zone for another Jenn Marie Thorne book. I haven't read anything by her since loving THE WRONG SIDE OF RIGHT. In any case, this was wonderful! I felt thrown into it a little bit and it took some getting used to. However, I loved dropping in on this summer, with no knowledge of classical music or any references they made, and just following Ruby ...more
Nasty Lady MJ
To see full review click here.

I haven’t written a lot of (full) reviews for a lot of reasons this year. I ultimately want to redo this blog. I haven’t done an overhaul in years and the site looks dated and clunky and I sort of want to rebrand. However, I did want to read Night Music, primarily because it’s a book I have complicated feelings for especially for a DNF.

I stopped when I read about 200 pages of the book. Thorne writes fairly long contemporaries so that was roughly 50% of this book. I
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Samantha (WLABB)
Rating: 4.5 Stars

This wasn't quite the rom-com I expected, but it was a beautiful story about music, first love, and discovering and nurturing your passion.

Oscar found himself thrust into the spotlight, when his musical talent was discovered and he was rewarded with a scholarship to the Amberley School. He was a bit of a fish out of water, but he worked hard to "fit" into this world, even sometimes at his own expense. This made me sad, because I adored him! Oscar was everything one would want in
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Suad Shamma
Nov 14, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: own, 2019
OK. OK OK OK.

Where do I begin?
When I first started the book, I was immediately drawn into the characters' lives. Ruby and Oscar are two very interesting characters and their differences and similarities bring them together in a crash and burn kind of thing. It starts out really well, I loved their chemistry, their dynamic, their conversation, the threads of serious issues being conveyed but never truly discussed, like racism and how people treat them differently.

Their romance was super sweet, a
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ariel
May 10, 2019 rated it liked it
solid 3*

so...i have a lot of thoughts about this book.

overall, if you want a cute, romantic YA book that has a little family drama and comments on elitism sprinkled on top - i think just about anyone would enjoy this. it was full of emotion, regret, aspiration, and romance. a young girl trying to navigate her life after everything she knows is being twisted up and turned upside down makes for a really good read. it definitely talks about things on race that i haven't seen explored in YA very mu
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Andrew
I was enraptured in this delightful novel, and although it's realistic fiction, it felt magical-- love and music bloom beautifully together. Over the course of a New York summer, Ruby tries to navigate her place in her music-oriented family, where not only is she the youngest, but doesn't feel like she can match up to their abilities. Enter Oscar, her father's handsome & charming protégé; his upbeat attitude and brilliance in writing full symphonies encourages her to explore her career options. ...more
Christina (A Reader of Fictions)
Night Music grabbed me from start to finish, despite being pretty understated as novels go. One thing I do want to warn you guys about is that, despite what the description of the book says, I would not call Night Music a romantic comedy. This book is great and it is a romance, but it's not a comedy. It's definitely a drama, so set your expectations accordingly.

What I fell for first was Ruby's voice. She's a bit cold and judgmental and angry, and I'm all about that energy. Ruby's probably going
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Mah Marino | Happy Reading Co.
The magic of this book is how music not just a prop to connect the characters, it is a character and it has its own magic besides everything. The fact that I’m in no way musically inclined made this experience unique for me.

“It’s love.” Oscar peered at the ceiling again. “Most classical music is. Not all, but most. You know…” He rolled over to face me. “I can appreciate all kinds of music, I really can. I think there’s something there. But hip-hop, pop, it speaks to front, you know? It’s the fac
...more
Carolyn Elaine
Jul 05, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Rating: 5 stars

Ruby Chertok is the daughter of a classical music legend. Actually, she's the youngest sister of a family of classical music legends. Ruby herself is little bit less of a classical music legend. Ever since her disastrous audition for a summer music "camp", the same "camp" her father works at, Ruby's sworn off the piano. She can't even stand to be near it. Then, Oscar Bell enters her life. Oscar is a Black rising composer. His compositions of music are actual greatness. Oscar knows
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Charlotte
Apr 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2019, lib19
if you like YA books about young musicians, this is a must read. It's not just about music, although that is front and center. It's also a very sweet romance, about Ruby, privileged daughter of one of the premier musical families of New York, who has just realized she doesn't have the talent to join her family's musical rank, and Oscar, the brilliant young composer who is living with Ruby and her Dad for the summer (scholarship to the prestigious music where the dad teaches) . Ruby is white, and ...more
Julia
Jun 25, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2019
i'm really not sure how to review this because it was definitely a book that i didn't hate but i didn't extremely like. so i think i'll split my review according to those two categories.

what i liked:

- how the author handled the implications of race and anti-blackness in the USA
- how well written the multi racial relationship was
- how the topics of privilege and race was handled with care
- ruby's characterization and her constant battle with family legacy and her place in the world after realizi
...more
Janice
Aug 09, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I loved this book. I have a pretty extensive background in classical music, so it was definitely speaking my language. And I completely identified with Ruby and how she slowly realized that she was not a great musician--the hurt and embarrassment she felt! I was right there with her. In some ways, it was a lighthearted summer romance, and in other ways, it delved into issues of race, class, and privilege.

My favorite moment in the book, though, hands-down was when Florence Foster Jenkins was ment
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Annie Oosterwyk
Apr 13, 2020 rated it it was amazing
And now I will go read everything else this author has written. I cared so much about these characters and their lives! This book moved off my bedside table and into my armchair for daytime reading. Thorne perfectly captures that transitional time in life when you’ve left behind what you thought would be your life and need a new plan.
I loved the integration of life and music in NYC and the glimpse at a young artist’s creative process. Everyone grows in this novel and we are privileged to watch.
The Artisan Geek
Mar 30, 2019 marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: bookcase
31/3/19
I won this book with a giveaway!! I'm not really that of a romance girl, but I am willing to give it a shot :D

You can find me on
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Mary
Jul 11, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: quarantine, july-2020
i enjoyed this book a lot. I especially enjoyed the classical music connections as i'm a classical music loving violinist. this was hard for me to put down!
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