Mags meets Gillian accidentally one day while she, Mags, is patrolling the forest and she, Gillian, is wailing away on her violin on the balcony of a hut. Could they be destined to become friends? It seems unlikely as Mags does not even reveal her presence at first and then is critical of Gillian once they do meet. However, friendship is something that takes time and effort. Perhaps is Mags can help Gillian find the funding to attend the prestigious Yehudi Menuhin School, their friendship will head in the right direction.
Parkinson imbues this novel with some wonderfully eccentric characters and loads of warm wonderful humor reminiscent of the work of Joan Bauer at times. Mags is a blossoming author whose first novel, the one we are reading, must follow the forms and conventions of all stories she informs us. Fortunately, Mags (and Parkinson) breaks some of the rules and brings readers a cheeky look at family, friends, and the power of music.