Overview When widower Gerrit Vandekamp takes his granddaughter to piano lessons one day, he finds himself drawn to her music teacher, a woman unlike any he has known. Neither can predict how their duet will sound as they practice the music of renewed hope and second chances.
Publishers Description Four Hands. Two Hearts. One Song. When widower Gerrit Appeldoorn takes his granddaughter to piano lessons one day, he finds himself drawn to her music teacher: a woman unlike any he has known. It's an unlikely attraction. He's a retired dairyman with mud on his boots; Joan Horton is a world traveler and former piano instructor at New York's most prestigious academy of music. Not quite " beauty and the beast, " but close. Even so, Gerrit slowly begins to open his heart: to Joan, to music, to the possibilities that may be found in both. Yet as their relationship deepens, Gerrit faces crises concerning his family and farm, while Joan confronts a dark secret that threatens her future. While coping with these challenges, neither can predict how their duet will sound as they practice the music of renewed hope and second chances.
Citations And Professional Reviews The Duet by Robert Elmer has been reviewed by professional book reviewers and journalists at the following establishments -
CBA Retailers - 02/01/2004 page 60
Publishers Weekly - 02/02/2004 page 60
Romantic Times - 03/01/2004 page 79
Booklist - 04/01/2004 page 1347
Christianity Today - 09/01/2004 page 92
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Studio: WaterBrook Press
Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 8.82" Width: 5.22" Height: 0.76" Weight: 0.85 lbs.
Release Date Feb 17, 2004
Publisher WaterBrook Press
ISBN 1578567408 ISBN13 9781578567409
Availability 0 units.
More About Robert Elmer
Robert Elmer lives in the Seattle area with his wife and their little white dog, Farragut, who is named for the famous admiral. He is the author of over fifty books, most of them for younger readers (but some for grown-ups, as well). He enjoys sailing in the San Juan Islands, exploring the Pacific Northwest with his wife, and spending time with their three kids - along with a growing number of little grandkids.
Robert Elmer currently resides in the state of Washington.
Loved it! I can't wait for the sequel, captivating, fun, wonderful!!!!!!!!!!!! Please give us more!
Dubbel Zout anyone? Mar 5, 2005
A retired dairy farmer and a college professor ... the most unlikely couple you could find.
But not in THE DUET. Here you will find not only Gerrit Appledoorn and Joan Horton, but also a charmingly written novel that will have you smiling from cover to cover.
Gerrit Appledoorn is the retired dairy farmer, struggling with too much time on his hands, a computer that won't co-operate, and a family crisis.
Joan Horton is the college professor on a year's sabbatical. She arrives in rural Van Dalen to be closer to her pregnant daughter and immediately takes up as the new piano teacher.
Gerrit's granddaughter, Mallory, is a student of Joan's, but as time goes by, Gerrit is also drawn to the music, leaving room for a sweet story of romance in the senior years. But Joan has a secret from the past, one that is about to catch up with her and possibly destroy any happiness on the horizon.
Weave into this the subplot of different denomination acceptance and you have a beautifully layered story that will keep you enthralled.
THE DUET is a wonderful witty novel full of lovable and memorable characters. At first I was a little dubious. Robert Elmer wasn't an author I associated with adult romantic fiction. After all, my six-year-old daughter loves his AstroKid's series. How does a children's writer cross over to adult fiction? Remarkably well, if Mr Elmer is anything to go by. He now has two fans in our house.
What's a Dubbel Zout, you ask? Hey, go read the book! You'll find out.
The Duet - a charming, relatable romance Dec 28, 2004
The Duet is a charming novel set in the fictitious town of Van Dalen, Washington. With a thinly disguised Lynden as the background, author Robert Elmer shares the story of two very different families as they struggle through painful, life altering events.
Elmer deftly offers Joan Horton as one of the novel's main characters. Joan, a music professor from New York, moves to Van Dalen for a one-year sabbatical. As she battles between her prim and proper façade and steadfast belief in her own inadequacy, Joan is determined to accept her husband's death and her son's downward spiral into depression. While Joan's son and daughter are secondary characters, they serve the novel well in capturing Joan's emotions and presenting a well-rounded picture of this self-doubting matriarch.
Gerrit Appeldoorn, a retired dairy farmer and staunch Calvinist, becomes Joan's reluctant piano student. Rooted deeply in his faith, Gerrit is quite set in his ways and does not flinch at the prospect of telling others how they should live their lives. Despite his sometimes curmudgeonly attitude, Gerrit is a likeable, old school gentleman.
Gerrit and Joan, both suffering from the loss of a beloved spouse, come together as friends, learning about each other's different backgrounds and beliefs. Predictably, they lean on each other for companionship and support, barely aware of the emerging relationship between them.
Elmer, who has primarily been a children's author, successfully provides the adult reader with an interesting, relatable romance. His characters are well defined and likeable, creating a genuine fondness for the families who are lovingly depicted. While the plot is somewhat predictable, Elmer skillfully draws the reader in through the use of articulate language, realistic dialogue and appealing descriptions. In addition to an already well written novel, Elmer sprinkles in famous quotes that bring added charm and breadth to the story.
CHARMING!!! WARMS THE HEART!!! Dec 23, 2004
Thank you, Robert Elmer, for a charming book. It warmed my heart as I followed the storytelling.......and loved each character.
I could almost hear the music from the old Steinway. As a child I remember practicing the piano.....wished I'd stayed with it!!
Thank you for weaving two people together who had been alone since the loss of their mates. Tenderly done!!
The sounds and fragrances of the paragraphs were exciting. Wanted to pull up a chair at Gerrit's kitchen table knowing ahead of time that there would be good conversation.
And, thank you for the fellowship of believers throughout the book.....it makes God real.
Looking forward to your next book in the spring.
beautiful inspirational melody May 13, 2004
Widow Joan Marie Horton takes a leave of absence from teaching at New York's Gaylord School of Music to spend time with her pregnant daughter Alison and son-in-law Jim in Van Dalen, Washington. To earn money, Joan Marie fills in for piano teacher Linda Klopstra, who is in Romania for a year, teaching students.
Elderly Gerrit Appeldoom still mourns the loss of his beloved long time spouse Miriam and almost as much the loss of his family's dairy farm. His beliefs shattered and with nothing to occupy him, he feels empty.
Gerrit accompanies his granddaughter Mallory for her piano lessons. When he hears Joan Marie playing, Gerrit finds his old appreciation for music beyond Johnny Cash has resurfaced. He is even ready to dance to the music and decides he wants lessons from Joan Marie. Through Joan Marie, Gerrit also rediscovers the Lord. Though concerned how their loved ones will react, they fall in love; now both know that Jesus will guide them and their families into doing the right thing.
This is an engaging inspirational character study focusing on the relationships between two older individuals to one another, their children and grandchildren, and the Lord. The story avoids being to maudlin because Joan Marie and Gerrit are real people wanting to do the best for others, but now have a second chance to do something for themselves. Although there is little action, readers who appreciate a powerful insightful look into the souls of protagonists will want to accompany the DUET as they play a beautiful melody.