Sight Reading

Press & Reviews

“What might have been simply the story of a man leaving his marriage for a younger woman blossoms into much more. …Kalotay celebrates art in general, even considering what it is and isn’t, in prose that is brisk and concise as well as sensual and sumptuous.  …A fictive musical and familial feast.”   —Michele Leber, BOOKLIST (starred review)

“Engaging and often insightful. …As each [character] confronts their aspirations and limitations, they find renewal in surprising and satisfying ways, and that forward motion is what will keep readers turning the pages. Along the way, Kalotay seeds the tale with some delightfully vivid writing.”  —Boston Globe

“Kalotay infuses each of the characters with total believability stemming from her understanding of classical music and her perceptions of human nature.  She is a very wise writer… and her brilliant intuitions are augmented by her lyrical writing.”  —Toronto Star

“Soul-searching… touching… Kalotay’s thoughtful insights on artistic endeavors add depth to this graceful book.”  —Cleveland Plain Dealer

“Deep, resonant mysteries play underneath this musical novel.  …Kalotay writes about music so you almost hear it.”  —Improper Bostonian

“Kalotay writes elegantly and ably about music and emotion, drafting a moving meditation on the sacrifices made for art and the mysteries of the heart.”  —Publishers Weekly

“Certain to hit a deep chord among readers for its unflinching, often lyrical examination of the nuances of marriage, parenthood, and divorce, this is a novel about hard–won wisdom, forgiveness, and the rewards of self–awareness.” —Bostonia

“Kalotay’s soulful second novel chronicles the collateral damage three classical musicians inflict on the people who love them.  Merging two inherently incompatible modes of expression, writing and music, presents a formidable challenge—one Kalotay rises to admirably here.” —Kirkus

“Kalotay really shines when discussing musicians making music—[and] she effectively shows us how performing artists live.  Much as we ourselves do, except they then get to create something gorgeous.”  —Barbara Hoffert, Library Journal

“[Sight Reading] reads like an amazingly accurate biographical account of today’s music school life. …Kalotay manages to capture the fleeting exultation that performers feel whenever they play. It is as if she has been on stage, bow in hand, ready to make or break her career with a single piece of music.” —New York Journal of Books

“Kalotay writes with knowledge and passion. …The characters about which Kalotay writes are deeply flawed, but also talented and fascinating to read about. Whether or not readers have a background in and knowledge of classical music, they’ll enjoy spending a brief time in this near-fanatical world.” —

“Kalotay’s writing is lovely.  She can write about the most mundane human activities and paint a vivid picture.” —Washington Independent Review of Books

“Like a symphony: dark and gloomy at times but then turning light and upbeat.…Divorces happen, affairs happen, and there is heartbreak and loss. Yet, somehow, we survive and become better people because of our experiences.” —Baltimore Jewish Times

“Kalotay’s characters navigate the uncertain waters of life.” —New Jersey Monthly

“This wise, elegant novel maps the fallout from a passionate affair over the course of two decades. …Kalotay writes with grace and authority, paying equal attention to the artistic and emotional lives of her characters.”   —Tom Perrotta, bestselling author of The Leftovers

Sight Reading is at once a compelling story about love, loss, and music in four interwoven lives, and an insightful exploration of the sources and expression of creativity  Kalotay shines her light on the gap between hope and reality in each of her characters’ lives.  The results are compulsively readable, memorable, and wise.”  —Nancy Richler, award-winning author of The Imposter Bride and Your Mouth Is Lovely

“This entertaining novel follows a group of musicians through twenty years of disappointments and betrayals; lusts, regrets, afflications and delusians; rehearsals, recombinations and revelations.”  —Edith Pearlman, award-winning author of Binocular Vision