The Music of Life
The Music of Life
Bookroo4.6 / 7Goodreads3.6 / 5
The Definitive Guide to

The Music of Life

Written and illustrated by Louis Thomas
Published by Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR)
Prices as of Oct 22

What Does Bookroo Think of This Book

A lovely reminder to find inspiration in the seemingly mundane and insignificant.

Lenny is a music composer living in the heart of Paris. One night, he sits down to begin a symphony but remains stumped for hour after hour until, noticing the sound of his cat Pipo lapping milk from a bowl, he is inspired to search for the symphony around him. Repeating the phrase “It’s not a symphony, but it feels like music,” Lenny draws inspiration first from the sounds inside his apartment (like a leaking sink), then from the sounds of the the great outdoors, both man-made and natural (like a jogger running, squirrels cracking nuts, and the squeaky wheels of a trolley), until he exclaims, “Now this feels like a symphony!” Created in ink and watercolor and featuring iconic Parisian elements and architecture, the illustrations’ blend of reality and style mirror the book’s message about finding and creating art from everyday moments in a blend of color and experience. Thomas’s depiction of Lenny’s facial expressions is skillfully nuanced, particularly in showing the familiar look of an artist straining to capture a fleeting, inspiring moment. Pulling together the scattered notes hastily scrawled by Lenny to capture each sound that inspires him, the story culminates in a full page of sheet music—composed by Thomas’s Aunt Anne—that gives readers a sense of the true magnitude of what Lenny has accomplished.

What Kind of Book is The Music of Life

Topics

Genres

Locations

What Questions Should I Ask My Child

  • Lenny is inspired by the sounds all around him. Take a minute and listen to what sounds you can hear right now that you may not have noticed before. Do they sound like music?
  • The story never specifically says where it is set, but it is certainly set in a particular city. Read the book again, and look for clues as to what city Lenny lives in. Can you discover what it is?
  • At the very front of the book, there is a little note from the author that says: "The author thanks his aunt Anne Thomas who wrote the sheet music for Lenny's symphony. And Leonard Bernstein, who never ceased to inspire him." Do you know who Leonard Bernstein is? With an adult's help, find some of his music and listen to it.

Reviews

Book Lists That Include This Book

The Creative Behind the Book

What Has Louis Thomas Said About This Book

Nothing yet! You should let Louis Thomas know that you want to hear from them about their book.

What is Lenny's cat's name?
  1. A
    Fido
  2. B
    Pipo
  3. C
    Lenny Jr.
Take the book quiz!

Other Books You Might Enjoy If You Liked This Book

    New York Melody
    5.0
    Helene Druvert
    Drum City
    4.5
    Vanessa Newton, Thea Guidone
    Nighttime Symphony
    4.3
    Timbaland, Christopher Myers
    Max Found Two Sticks
    Brian Pinkney
    P Is for Paris
    Paul Thurlby
    What a Wonderful World
    5.9
    Bob Thiele, George David Weiss, Tim Hopgood
    Pokko and the Drum
    5.9
    Matthew Forsythe
    Florette
    5.5
    Anna Walker
    The Curious Garden
    5.4
    Peter Brown
    Where's the Party?
    5.0
    Ruth Chan

Book Details

ISBN
9780374303150
Publication Date
February 18, 2020
Page Count
40
Reading Age
3 - 6 years
ASIN/ISBN 10
0374303150

Contribute to this page

Core Score - 44%

Still needs the basics.

Depth Score - 31%

Just the barebones.

Improve this page

Are you the author or illustrator? Claim your book.