Imagine being born to two of the most famous musicians in the world. Imagine the hopes and dreams that your family–and the entire world–would have for you. An opera singer for a mother and a conductor for a father? Imagine the musician you could become with that kind of family heritage!
So now, imagine if you were that child, but you absolutely, completely, utterly do not have a musical bone in your body. You can’t sing, you can’t play piano, or violin, or the Sousaphone–just, nothing. Even after years and years (and years!) of training, still…nothing.
Well, then you’d be Melody Trumpet.
Melody is a gloriously appealing character. She’s kind, and funny, and wants everyone to be happy, but her demanding parents don’t want a bar of her until she can make music. They’ve even hidden her from the world, too ashamed that their otherwise quite excellent daughter can’t play an instrument to let anybody see her. She is schooled at home and has no friends but the adults who look after her. But sadly, the principal of the school her parents both went to is holding a concert, and has insisted that the guest of honour be Melody herself in her debut performance. So what can she do? Well, with a little bit of sneaking around, Melody might just find a way to see what talent lies inside herself after all–and to show the world.
This is one of those books that have very satisfyingly terrible parents. I know in real life not all parents are great anyway, and books are a way to kind of explore those ideas–for what to do if your parents do trap you inside their mansion for ten years and never let you meet anyone else and always forget your birthday. Or, if your parents are only terrible sometimes, like when they make you go to bed, it’s nice to realise they could be worse. You really want Melody to overcome the heavy expectations that her parents have laid on her, and it’s heartbreaking how blind they are to what is good about their daughter.
And if you’ve ever wondered what you’re good at, or what your talent really is, don’t worry–just be a good person, and there’s always time to find out how you’re going to change the world.