FOR Julia Osborne fans the release of Playing with Keys, the sequel to The Midnight Pianist, will be music to their ears.
And for those who have not yet met Sandra, Emilia and the community of Curradeen, it is well worth doing so.
Written for a younger audience and of course the young at heart, the Nambucca-based author continues with her tale of life in the 1960s, both country and city, conveyed in large part through letters between the two main characters.
“I’ve written adult fiction for more than 30 years … I wanted to write for a younger audience, something simple, not dystopian or escapist, and paint a picture of life back then,” Julia said.
“This book was never planned but readers said they wanted to know what happened after the first book … this book sort of wrote itself … it is hard to say where ideas come from.”
Hallmarks of the story, such as the piano and the country town vibe, are drawn from her own experience of living in a rural area.
“I played when I was younger and then when I married and moved to the bush, it was the piano that kept me from going insane in that splendid isolation.”
Research is an important part of how Julia writes her stories and although the passages might be brief, references to the Korean War and Randwick Girls High at that time, for example, are all solidly grounded in fact.
Playing with Keys is on sale at the Stringer Gallery, Nambucca Heads for $18. Orders are also welcome – phone 0416 308 733 or email email@example.com. It can also be ordered through bookshops.
And stay tuned … the final book in the trilogy, Song for Emilia, will be released soon.