Writing Like a Virtuoso
New Zealand author Sarah Quigley’s latest novel The Conductor “reads like a proper up-all-night page-turner, but it also goes deeper than that, conveying the extraordinary life-saving properties of music, and hope,” Guardian reviewer Bella Bathurst writes. “The story of how Shostakovich and one valiant, bedraggled orchestra created a defining moment in the siege of Leningrad proves a gripping testament to the life-saving power of music. Reinhabiting a recent historical event for fictional purposes is a finicky trick to pull off. It’s a mark of Quigley’s sympathy that she not only brings Shostakovich and Eliasberg back from the dead — and writes like a virtuoso about music — but that she manages to light up something of the Russian soul.” Quigley lives in Berlin.