Jan 22, 2020
Gone: A Girl, a Violin, a Life Unstrung
Posted by Min Kym

The spellbinding memoir of a violin virtuoso who loses the instrument that had defined her both on stage and off and who discovers, beyond the violin, the music of her own voice.Her first violin was tiny, harsh, factory made her first piece was Twinkle Twinkle, Little Star But from the very beginning, Min Kym knew that music was the element in which she could swim aThe spellbinding memoir of a violin virtuoso who loses the instrument that had defined her both on stage and off and who discovers, beyond the violin, the music of her own voice.Her first violin was tiny, harsh, factory made her first piece was Twinkle Twinkle, Little Star But from the very beginning, Min Kym knew that music was the element in which she could swim and dive and soar At seven years old, she was a prodigy, the youngest ever student at the famed Purcell School At eleven, she won her first international prize at eighteen, violinist great Ruggiero Ricci called her the most talented violinist I ve ever taught And at twenty one, she found the one, the violin she would play as a soloist a rare 1696 Stradivarius Her career took off She recorded the Brahms concerto and a world tour was planned Then, in a London cafe, her violin was stolen She felt as though she had lost her soulmate, and with it her sense of who she was Overnight she became unable to play or function, stunned into silence In this lucid and transfixing memoir, Kym reckons with the space left by her violin s absence She sees with new eyes her past as a child prodigy, with its isolation and crushing expectations her combustible relationships with teachers and with a domineering boyfriend and her navigation of two very different worlds, her traditional Korean family and her music And in the stark yet clarifying light of her loss, she rediscovers her voice and herself.

  • Title: Gone: A Girl, a Violin, a Life Unstrung
  • Author: Min Kym
  • ISBN: 9780451496072
  • Page: 443
  • Format: Hardcover
  • Gone A Girl a Violin a Life Unstrung The spellbinding memoir of a violin virtuoso who loses the instrument that had defined her both on stage and off and who discovers beyond the violin the music of her own voice Her first violin was t

    Rebecca Foster

    The best memoirs introduce you to a life experience you ll never know for yourself I m completely unmusical, so I enjoyed learning about what it s like to be a violin virtuoso and a child prodigy, and what it means to fall in love with an instrument Kym also puts things into the context of being a Korean immigrant to London The central event of the book is having her Stradivarius, worth hundreds of thousands of pounds, stolen from a train station caf in late 2010, an event that plunged her into [...]


    Thebooktrail

    Visit the locations in the novel Gone This book sang to me what a joy to read and an honour to be inside Min Kym s world Despite the relatively short length of the story, this is just the written story like a page of written music is really an entire concerto The story of Min Kym s journey to the violin maestro she became is something to marvel at long after you ve finished.The writing is warm and friendly I was Min Kym s friend from the start Her passion for music, for her violin stands out it [...]


    Kasa Cotugno

    This book has it all In her beautifully written memoir, Min Kym describes her life as a childhood prodigy who received notice from a very early age From the age of six, when she first picked up a scaled down violin, she knew where her future and passion would lie With each successive instrument, increasing in size and importance, she mastered her technique and expanded her repertoire, until, in a moment suffused with romance than deemed possible, she met the one, a rare 1696 Stradivarius From t [...]


    Marjorie

    I very much enjoyed this heartfelt memoir by Min Kym Ms Kym gives us an in depth look into the life of a child prodigy Though she longed to live a normal life, hers was taken up with studying and playing the violin She loved every minute of it but she did miss not having friends or going to other children s birthday parties But music was her passion and she definitely kept my interest as she tells of her progress in music.Then she finds what she calls her soulmate a valuable Stradivarius Though [...]


    Evann

    Min is talented than all of us, totally knows it and I didn t hate her for even a minute Love her writing Love her candor in regards to all her greatness and her flaws It reads very fresh and honest I couldn t relate for a second but I never felt like I needed to in order to care It almost felt as if Min didn t expect us to care, she just really needed to tell the story A cool desperation Which worked I m glad I took my time with this one Thanks to the firstreads giveaway and Crown Publishing f [...]


    Valorie

    I read this entire book in one sitting, skipping dinner and foregoing sleep to continue reading Min Kym s memoirs about learning the violin, finding her Stradivarius, and the horror of it s theft It is truly spellbinding The best memoirs are the ones that can bring you into a life as it was lived by someone else, and Kym does exactly that The story she s told alternately beautiful and horrifying wraps you in it s arms and shows you what it is to be a virtuoso but also to be a young woman in a wo [...]


    Natalie (weneedhunny)

    There s so many wonderful things to be found in this slim musical memoir the idea of a violin as a person s voice, the connection to an instrument for a professional musician, the aim of music and the art form s beauty as well as its limitations all of this and is woven into Min Kym s own personal story of a life in which the violin has played the leading role Video review or chat about this book youtu P4pYc YoNrg


    Tracey

    Gone is the story of a woman with a violin, who had begun as a child prodigy on the violin, who had found her equivalent to a soul mate in the perfect violin for her, and from whom this violin was stolen It was a Stradivarius, and so worth a great deal of money but, importantly to her, it was the instrument from which she had brought music for ten years, which she had nurtured and which had nurtured her, which she had expected to die holding Which in a moment of weakness, of illness and trust i [...]


    Laura Harrison

    What a treat Although Gone was heartbreaking much of the time, it is beautifully written You become friends with Min Kym from the start Her life as a musical prodigy and beyond When her soulmate Stradivarius is stolen at a train caf no she was never careless with her instrument Her boyfriend talked her into moving it , it completely broke her Musically and mentally Her eating disorder from many years prior returned and she was unable to play Min s violin was found in 2010 But it was too late Min [...]


    Karen

    I couldn t put this book down Min Jin Kym is a violin virtuoso, born in Korea, but raised in London, England I loved her honesty about her love for the violin, growing up as a prodigy Even though I am not a musician, I grew up with a brother and a best friend that played the violin, so a lot of Kym s story resonated I also bought her album and listened to it while reading the book.


    Angie

    Min Kym tackled a difficult task here to describe a loss that few people truly understand She spends a lot of time trying to convey her relationship to music and to her Strad, they way it became a piece of her, an extension of her most intimate and also public identity I loved the easy way in which she discussed her relationship with specific pieces The complicated relationships with teachers There was a delay between when I downloaded this book and when I read it, and that delay was long enough [...]


    Suze Lavender

    Music has always been in Min Kym s blood and from the moment she held the violin for the first time she knew this instrument would make her happy As a child prodigy her career as a musician was settled She played with the most inspiring teachers, who were impressed by her talent and she won many prestigious prizes When, at the age of twenty one, Min Kym found the instrument of her dreams, a Stradivarius from 1696, she knew she d have a brilliant future together with her beloved instrument Unfort [...]


    Sara

    Unlike the description in the blurb about this memoir, I found Min Kym s Gone to be a very far cry from spellbinding This was the first uncorrected proof that I ve received that I felt lived up to its name The amount of typos and errors throughout the pages was jarring and made the already short, choppy sentences that much choppy and lacking readability In addition to that, I was quite bored until the action, so to speak, began, in the fourth chapter, when Min s violin gets stolen It is here th [...]


    Marzie

    I received this book from Net Galley in exchange for an honest review.5 Stars, if I could give My violin was born in 1696, the year Peter the Great became Tsar of Russia It s seen off Napoleon, Queen Victoria, Stalin, Mao Tse tung, two world wars, and so far, the atomic bomb People come, people go, violinists live, violinists die, empires rise and fall and the violin lives on, washed from shore to shore on tides of wealth, fortune and history But this is just a speck of time for my Strad This [...]


    Steve

    I had high hopes for this book, but in the end it was little than a very short story stretched out over 200 pages.Musician Min Kym was a child prodigy and is, by all measures, a remarkably gifted violinist What she is not is a remarkably gifted writer That s not a slight, simply a fact She repeats the few points she has over and over and over via a choppy and dull prose It might read as conversational, but that s not necessarily a good thing The tale of her stolen Stradivarius is the hook, but [...]


    Nadine Keels

    No violin meant to former child prodigy and then professional soloist Min Kym than the 1696 Stradivarius she found at age twenty one When, years later, thieves steal her violin from her, they essentially steal much than a wooden instrument Min Kym relates her story of losing her violin and finding her voice in her memoir, Gone A Girl, a Violin, a Life Unstrung.This author brings not only music but also her instrument itself to life through her words, so that her violin is thoroughly personifie [...]


    Liza

    Min Kym was a child prodigy on the violin When she started playing at age six, she knew it was to become her life And it did She went on to study in prestigious schools, earned prestigious awards, and had a blossoming career complete with albums released by Sony But that was all lost in a moment her violin, her Stradivarius, was stolen from a restaurant while she and her boyfriend were sitting right next to it The moment of panic when she discovered it was gone led to months of panic, then depre [...]


    Felicity

    This is a wonderful book about a musician s relationship with their instrument and what happens when it is taken away from them.Min was eating lunch with her partner at Euston Station when her priceless Stradivarius was stolen This plunged her in to depression and effectively ended her glittering career.I loved this book Being a musician myself I can completely relate It was also fascinating to hear about her Korean upbringing and how being a talented prodigy affected her for the rest of her lif [...]


    The Idle Woman

    As someone with no musical ability whatsoever, I ve never quite understood the bond that musicians have with their instruments Now, however, I m a little closer to appreciating that blend of physical and emotional reliance, thanks to this extraordinary and frank memoir You may not recognise Min Kym s name, but you will have heard her story she is the brilliant violinist whose Stradivarius was stolen at Euston Station in 2010 This beautifully written book is overshadowed throughout by that theft [...]


    gnarlyhiker

    You cannot go wrong reading Min Kym s Gone The writing is clear and to the point Inside is a journey well travelled, a good dose of history into classical music, violins, performers and being a child prodigy Solid Highly recommend.


    Simon

    A desperately sad book a tale of pressure, loss, mental abused without the happy ending


    Janelle

    They re like great trees, these violins Like those from which they re made They live through epochs.Min Kym fell in love for the first time as a young child with a violin Parental expedience demanded that she play either trumpet or violin as those were the only instructors available in the same time slot as Kym s older sister s piano lesson She was immediately taken with the instrument In the week between settling on the violin and receiving her first, she cut out a paper violin to play Kym s ta [...]


    Dena (Batch of Books)

    I love reading books about artists They re full of a passion that most people never feel in their lifetime But very few artists are able to express their passion in words, but Min Kym managed that feat beautifully.What s the Book About Gone is Min Kym s memoir She was a child prodigy and started playing the violin exceptionally well at the age of six In the way that prodigies do, she quickly gained recognition for her abilities and was soon playing in concerts across the globe.At the age of twen [...]


    Deanna Madden

    Gone A Girl, A Violin, A Life Unstrung is a memoir by professional violinist Min Kym, who experienced a devastating personal and professional blow when her beloved violin, a Stradivarius, was stolen as she ate at a fast food restaurant with her boyfriend on a cold November night in 2010 The loss would rob her of her confidence in her ability and cause a prolonged crisis until she could find herself again.While the incident that caused such heartbreak is a key part of the memoir, there is that w [...]


    Magdelanye

    When someone is as talented and dedicated as Myn Kym, it seems fair enough that she might feel her talent makes her somewhat special Here she gives an exacting account of the hard work entailed in being recognized as a child prodigy, and the determination that placed her as an international darling before she had even reached her teens She was a bright and shining star.But a darker meaning of special intruded on the trajectory of her success when her beloved violin was stolen from a crowded rail [...]


    Heather

    As someone who briefly majored in music and has always been fascinated by that world, especially the ber talents who dedicate their lives to their instrument, this book intrigued me from the start What must it be like to be a prodigy Does one become a prodigy on their own or are they nudged by parents Honestly, this book answers those questions but also touches on broader issues of human nature and how seemingly benign decisions can determine your fate There s a lot packed into this short book a [...]


    Melissa

    A really interesting memoir about musical talent and identity Kym is a violinist who is one of the prodigies, who conquers the the toughest pieces in the violin literature at an impossibly young age, and whose Stradivarius violin was stolen at the height of her career Her memoir looks at not just her career, but the toll it took on her, how much it pushed against her Korean upbringing, and how she succumbed to a bad relationship that may later have led to some really bad decisions The writing st [...]


    Laura

    3.5 Kym does a good job of describing how connected to their instrument a master musician can become As a child prodigy and an expatriate Korean, Kym tells of how she progresses through various teachers and violins She adds personal notes and includes setbacks along with her successes She builds tension although it sometimes feels awkward to the moment of the theft so that the reader really does feel the loss too It was very nice to download the soundtrack I got it from Hoopla through the librar [...]


    Donna

    This is an autobiography of a girl who was gifted at playing the violin Her gift and desire, shaped her family s decisions to make it possible for her to do what she did I appreciate this intuitive sense she had when it came to her instrument What I did not appreciate was the writing It was had all the markers of what I dislike when reading this genre Overall, this was just okay for me.


    Gina

    Such a good book So moving, so sad, so much musical and instrumental history Except for the theft, and its tragic consequences, such a universal story of youth and inexperienced decision making I would be willing to bet that most of us have at least a few similar experiences, and Min s story reminded me to be glad for each one from which I emerged only slightly the worse for wear.



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