House of Music

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A book review of House of Music: Raising the Kanneh-Masons by Kadiatu Kanneh-Mason

A book review of House of Music: Raising the Kanneh-Masons by Kadiatu Kanneh-Mason

Stars: ****

OneWorld Publications (2021)
368 pages

Disclosure: I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. This post contains affiliate links.

Summary: Seven brothers and sisters. All of them classically trained musicians. One was Young Musician of the Year and performed for the royal family. The eldest has released her first album, showcasing the works of Clara Schumann. These siblings don’t come from the rarefied environment of elite music schools, but from a state comprehensive in Nottingham. How did they do it?

Their mother, Kadiatu Kanneh-Mason, opens up about what it takes to raise a musical family in a Britain divided by class and race. What comes out is a beautiful and heartrending memoir of the power of determination, camaraderie and a lot of hard work. The Kanneh-Masons are a remarkable family. But what truly sparkles in this eloquent memoir is the joyous affirmation that children are a gift and we must do all we can to nurture them.

House of Music

When I accepted this book I knew it was about a musical family. I didn’t realize though how popular they are in Britain among classical music enthusiasts. The family has played for famous people and won many awards. It truly is amazing that all the children both wanted to pursue classical music and are as good at is as they are.

The first shock I got though was not about the Kanneh-Mason children but about the author’s father. After an introduction, the book starts off with the author’s parents and how they met.

“He was one of forty-five children from twenty-one wives, the eldest son of the favoured wife, and it was shocking to marry a foreign White woman.”

pg 2

If your mouth didn’t drop open after reading that, I’d be very shocked.

I loved reading about this lovely family. It made me very happy. I love all kinds of music but even if you don’t like classical, you could still enjoy reading this book. Kadiatu is a wonderful mom and her family is beautiful inside and out. She is doing something right.

The drive and ambition of her children are like nothing I’ve ever seen in any child I know. That she got seven children with such drive is a miracle. They all support each other and help each other out. No one can say they didn’t earn what they got (awards and opportunities.)

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About Kathleen

I've been a nonfiction lover for as long as I can remember. I love children's nonfiction as well and love to share my knowledge and the books I gained them from, with the world. I wish more people would give nonfiction a chance.