Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Joyner's Dream

I just finished reading the first novel by Sylvia Tyson, Joyner's Dream. If the name of the author seems familiar it is because Sylvia has been a part of the musical heritage of our time. She was half of the influential folk duo, Ian and Sylvia and wrote some classic songs, such as You Were On My Mind.
Sylvia is a truly Canadian artist and has performed for years as part of the group Quartette. Her novel, Joyner's Dream is a grand musical saga of a family history that covers more than two centuries and takes from pre Victorian England to our present era in Toronto. It is a family journal that is passed from generation to generation. The cast includes highway men, titled English nobility, jazz musicians, petty thieves, card sharks, a B Movie Hollywood Blond and a violin named Old Nick which is the thread of the family, the music that sustains the characters and helps them to rise above their flaws....
I don't want to give the plot away. It is like a 19th century saga in its scope. But the authors point of view makes it more Kesey than Dickens (I mean that as a real compliment). I will say that I was instantly drawn into the pages and finished the 419 page book in a fevered state. I truly enjoyed it and highly recommend it to anyone interested in music and history.
Sylvia also released a cd called Joyner\s Dream : The Kingsfold Suite which documents the music in the book. The music reflects the musical eras of the Joyner Family. She composed the music. Here is a link for the cd and mp3 download which allows you to sample the songs. The cd has been released in the USA, but the book has so far been released in Canada and the UK, but you can order it and peruse the pages if you click on this widget. 

No comments: