on June 14, 2011
Jody, Giselle, and Vivian live on a military base in Germany. The three girls have one thing in common - music. They have been taking lessons from Herr Muller for years and are about to attend another competition. Their string trio has played well in the past, but this year they've practiced hard and are hoping to win. However, they will soon learn about much more than their music.
While the girls have been busy practicing, history has been changing around them. It's 1990 and the Berlin Wall between East and West Germany has crumbled. The changes in Germany mean that Jody's father will be retiring and moving them back to the United States. Because of this, she is especially excited about playing with her friends for perhaps the last time.
One thing Jody is not expecting is to see a young soldier thrown off a bridge. As her friends watch, she rescues the soldier, and they drag him to safety. Once he is out of danger, the girls learn his name is Arvo Kross. He explains that he is an Estonian, and that he was attempting to leave his regiment because he was being ordered to complete a dangerous mission he believed was wrong.
Arvo convinces the girls that his life is in danger if he remains in Berlin, and he insists that even the Americans at the German base will not be able to help him. Jody is determined to help Arvo find a safe haven.
When the girls find out their music teacher won't be able to take them to their competition in Paris as scheduled, Jody sees a chance to help Arvo. Since their parents don't know about the cancelled performance, Jody explains how they can pool their resources and help Arvo leave Berlin to seek help in Paris. Besides saving their new friend, the three girls think he will be able to act as the adult necessary to get them registered for the music competition.
What follows is an exciting journey to the city of Paris. The girls do make an appearance at the competition, but that's just the beginning of their musical adventure.
Rosanne Parry is the author of SECOND FIDDLE, as well as an earlier novel titled HEART OF A SHEPHERD. In her author's note for this book, she explains that her own experiences in Germany from 1990-1992 inspired her story. SECOND FIDDLE features three strong characters who take matters into their own hands, and through creative problem-solving manage to take care of themselves and at the same time uncover a bit of espionage.
Reviewed by: Sally Kruger, aka "Readingjunky"