This review has been written as part of the blog tour for Songs in Ursa Major. Thank you to the team at Harper Collins for allowing me to take part, and for sending me copies of this excellent debut novel.
[ad • PR Product]
TW: drugs, addiction
When Jane Quinn steps onto the stage at the Island Folk Fest, she is ready to show what she can do. What she has yet to realise, is that perusing a musical career will not be straightforward. From fighting for creative control, to her relationship with fellow singer/ songwriter Jesse Reid, to discovering Jesse’s secret, Jane will have challenges to face; but how far will she go to persue her passion and to have the musical career of her choosing?
Exploring the music scene of the late 60s / early 70s, Songs in Ursa Major portrays a story of love, fame, and the power of music.
I love the characters in this novel, Jane Quinn in particular. She is a strong, female lead, but is also flawed and complex. I enjoyed following her story and rooted for her the whole way. As she steps into the music scene, Jane finds that she is treated differently as a female, but I was inspired by the strength and determination that she shows throughout the novel.
Every character in the novel is well-rounded and explored to a satisfying level. Although there are too many to mention, Brodie fleshes out her world very well with a variety of characters. The Quinn women provided a strong family for Jane, and I liked learning about each of them and their own struggles and triumphs. Jesse Reid is certainly complicated, but that didn’t stop Brodie from giving us a rounded view of his character. The bond between many of the characters was lovely to see, and I particularly admired how Brodie conveys the ties between Jane and her band, The Breakers. Despite their flaws, Brodie’s leading characters are loveable and I loved getting to know them.
The songs in this novel have been well-crafted and cleverly written so that they fit with the characters and narrative perfectly. They were so well described that I feel as if I know them without ever having heard them (although I wish I could!).
Overall, I loved delving into the music scene of the 70s and following the character’s journeys. Songs in Ursa Major had me hooked and I highly recommend it.
Emma Brodie’s debut novel tells a story that will break your heart, have you rooting for the characters to succeed, and make you forget that this is a work of fiction.