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"Tenderwire tells the story of a reckless young musician's obsession with what she suspects may be a hitherto undiscovered violin created by one of the old Italian masters." "Eva Tyne leaves her native Ireland to pursue a career as a classical violinist in New York. After her solo debut, she collapses and is rushed to the hospital. Still vulnerable after the shock, she meets a mysterious man, with whom she enters into an affair filled with passion but tainted by suspicion. Upon encountering a formidably alluring violin of dubious provenance, for which the shifty dealer will accept only cash, Eva realizes she must possess it. Racked with jealousy and unsure whom she can trust, she embarks on a dangerous and chaotic odyssey that rapidly descends into a nightmare of intrigue and paranoia. Narrated in Eva's unforgettable and unreliable voice, Tenderwire is a guessing game and a whodunit that surprises at every turn."--BOOK JACKET.
Claire Kilroy's first novel, All Summer, was published to great critical acclaim in the United Kingdom. Tenderwire is her American debut. She lives in Dublin.
In an Upper East Side neighborhood marked by a preponderance of specialist dry-cleaners, after a full nineteen years of preparation with one outcome in mind, I made my concert debut as violin soloist. When we took our places on the waxed golden stage, the members of the month-old New Amsterdam Chamber Orchestra, we could have been in a cornfield in July. It did not matter that it was the first week of January, that ice had paralyzed the city like snakebite. It was summer under the hot lights. We had effected a better season. Outside, there could have been murders in the snow. There couldve been lung-choking fogs. There could have been wild dogs on the loose. We were immune to it. The New York winter couldnt touch us. It couldnt get past the cloakroom door, though it lurked in the folds of our coats for our return. The dress rehearsal finished at five oclock. I had been aware of the pinch in my guts since that morning but had ignored it, there being no time to do anything but ignore it. I went along to the pre-concert dinner and smiled through the thank-you speeches delivered to mark the orchestras inaugural night. The pain intensified sometime around seven. At first I had dismissed it as nervesmy debut was looming after all. But at five minutes to eight, just before we were due onstage, it stabbed me so hard that I buckled. I slithered down the wall and placed my violin on the dressing room floor. Valentina? She looked around and then down. Oh my god, Eva, she exclaimed in her lovely precise English, and reached for my inhaler. V, its not asthma. Ill get Zach. No, lock the door. She locked the door and hunkered down beside me. Oh Jesus, whats wrong? Are you okay? Someone knocked politely. Eva? It was Zach. Dont answer, I warned her. Another knife of pain and I clenched my teeth, the halogen lights suddenly blindingly sharp. Zach knocked again, loudly this time, his tension seeping under the door and infecting the room. I grabbed Valentinas wrist. Somethings happening. Can you stand up? I shook my head. Eva? You in there? Zach cursed when the handle wouldnt yield to him. Why is this door locked? His voice was now addressed to someone behind him. Wheres Valentina? Jesus Christ, its almost time. He took off down the corridor. Valentina, I cant go out there. She blanched. Show me where it hurts. I showed her where the pain was. I think my appendix is about to burst or something. Thats not your appendix. Thump thump thump on the door. Zach was back. Open the fucking door, Eva, its practically eight. The pain eased. I released Valentinas wrist and told her to let him in. She rearranged my skirts for modesty and unlocked the door.ly: 'Times New Roman'" I cant go onstage, I said when Zach blustered in, unwelcome as a wasp. What? Why not? Im sick. Youre not sick. Its stage fright. Get up. She is sick, Valentina insisted. Konrad stuck his head into the room. Eight oclock, he reminded us, then spotted me in a
Excerpted from Tenderwire by Claire Kilroy
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