Cellist Emily Lopez, almost seventeen, feels like a discordant piece of music, full of mismatched notes that make her cringe. First her boyfriend breaks up with her then her dad, a famous symphony conductor, cancels their summer together touring Europe. To top it off, she's forced to go with her mom and stepdad to a dusty, old cattle ranch in Montana. How will she master an incredibly difficult Saint-Saëns concerto without her dad or cello teacher? She only has seven weeks to prepare for the competition that will determine her future. To a San Francisco girl, Montana feels like the end of the earth. But she soon discovers it is full of surprises after meeting Breck, the summer ranch hand.
"In this excellent YA novel, Russell's teenage cellist heroine Emily Lopez uses music as her framework for dealing with the world...Russell does a fantastic job creating Emily's world, and the young girl's voice is charming and plausible right from the start…Well written and engaging YA."