Prairie Sonata is a story of journeys. It’s told from the perspective of a woman looking back at herself when she was a young adult and follows her passage from innocence to experience.
Mira Adler grows up in post-World War II Canada, in a close-knit community founded by secular Eastern European Jews. The heart of her journey is her friendship with her Yiddish and violin teacher, Chaver B, a recent immigrant from Prague who is mysterious and intriguing and who Mira believes harbors a secret that seems to be woven into every fiber of his being.
Little by little, Mira chips away at Chaver B’s past. What she learns outrages and saddens her, yet she cannot stop herself from uncovering the truth about his life. And despite what she learns about Chaver B, herself, and the world around her, when she is older, Mira yearns for the chance to go back to her childhood.
Richly textured and lyrically written, Prairie Sonata is a coming-of-age story about music, love, friendship, community, and religion.
Prairie Sonata received a Starred Kirkus Review that called it a “compelling work…poignant and eloquent”. It is the winner of the Independent Press Award for Best Fiction and has been named a Distinguished Favorite by the New York City Big Book Award.