First Line Friday — The Melody of The Soul

19 Jan

This week,  I am featuring The Melody of The Soul by Liz Tolsma. Liz has captured my imagination with her previous books, and this one looks to be no exception. I have deliberately limited my WWII fiction reading lately — I have read A LOT of it in the last few years. But I could not resist getting this one. It is even set in Prague, a city that is on my bucket list to visit. I surely can’t lose with this book!

Leave a comment with your first line, then head over to Hoarding Books to find out what other bloggers are featuring.



By 1943, Anna Zadok, a Jewish Christian living in Prague, has lost everything, including her career as a concert violinist and almost her entire family. The only person she has left is her beloved grandmother, and she’s determined to keep her safe. But protecting Grandmother won’t be easy–not with a Nazi officer billeted below them.

Anna must keep a low profile. There’s one thing she refuses to give up, though. Despite instruments being declared illegal, Anna defiantly continues to practice her violin. She has to believe that the war will end someday and her career will be waiting. Fortunately for Anna, the officer, Horst Engel, enjoys her soothing music. It distracts him from his dissatisfaction with Nazi ideology and reminds him that beauty still exists in an increasingly ugly world.

When his neighbors face deportation, Horst is moved to risk everything to hide them. Anna finds herself falling in love with the handsome officer and his brave heart. But what he reveals to her might break her trust and stop the music forever. 

Passionate might best describe Liz Tolsma. She loves writing, research, and editing. Her passion shone through in her first novel which was a double award finalist. On any given day, you might find her pulling weeds in her perennial garden, walking her hyperactive dog, or curled up with a good book. Nothing means more to her than her family. She’s married her high-school sweetheart twenty-eight years ago. Get her talking about international adoption, and you might never get her to stop. She and her husband adopted three children, including a son who is a U.S. Marine, and two daughters.

27 Responses to “First Line Friday — The Melody of The Soul”

  1. susandyer1962 January 19, 2018 at 7:29 am #

    Happy Friday!

    Today, my First Line Friday comes from the next book on my TBR mountain, Coming Home to Island House by Erica James…..

    There she is, the scarlet woman herself.’
    ‘She’s back then.’
    ‘Back to flaunt herself right under our noses. She’s no shame, that one.’
    ‘No shame at all.’

    Have a great weekend!

    • rbclibrary January 19, 2018 at 8:08 am #

      Great opening! Thanks for sharing. Hope you can get that mountain under control!

  2. Trisha January 19, 2018 at 9:06 am #

    Over on my blog I’m sharing the first line from Heather Day Gilbert’s latest “Guilt by Association” It is the 3rd book in her Murder in the Mountains series. I’ll share here the first line from chapter 4.
    “Without a doubt, the number five trailer is the prettiest place in Scots’ Hollow.”
    Have a wonderful weekend!

    • rbclibrary January 19, 2018 at 11:20 am #

      Love, love Heather’s books! Happy Friday!

  3. Becky January 19, 2018 at 9:20 am #

    Great minds think alike. I’m featuring this same book on my blog today!

    My first line comes from a book that is on my soon-to-be read list.

    Your first thought upon picking up this book is probably: How can a person born without any limbs consider himself to to be the hands and feet of Jesus on this Earth?
    -Be the Hands and Feet: Living Out God’s Love for All His Children by Nick Vujicic

    • rbclibrary January 19, 2018 at 11:20 am #

      My kids had the opportunity to hear him speak several years ago. I’m sure it’s an inspiring book.

      • Becky January 20, 2018 at 8:18 am #

        That’s awesome! I’m excited to dig in and see what he has to say about evangelism.

  4. Suzie January 19, 2018 at 9:22 am #

    I’m looking forward to reading this one.

    The snow in middle Tennessee melted enough that my mailman finally showed up with a few packages in hand (a few of the books I’ve been waiting on). I pulled the first line to share from one of those:

    Her head throbbed and grogginess gripped her.
    –Thread of Revenge by Elizabeth Goddard

    • rbclibrary January 19, 2018 at 11:19 am #

      Wow, that’s a good line! Stay warm!

  5. Anneliese Dalaba January 19, 2018 at 9:52 am #

    The book I’m sharing on my blog this week is Runaway Bride by Mary Connealy. I will share here the first line from a children’s book I just finished reading by A. Lynn Basset called The Boy and The Clock Book. “Tick-tock, tick-tock. Only three minutes stood between Charlie Higgins and the best summer ever!” Have a great weekend!

    • rbclibrary January 19, 2018 at 11:18 am #

      Sounds like a good kid’s book

  6. lelandandbecky January 19, 2018 at 10:20 am #

    Happy Friday! My first line is from Callum’s Compass by Sara L. Foust:

    “A persistent knock at the front door dragged Kat Williams awake.”

    • rbclibrary January 19, 2018 at 11:17 am #

      Haven’t heard of this book. I’ll look it up!

  7. Carrie January 19, 2018 at 10:32 am #

    I’m reviewing this one next week – my first Liz Tolsma book! 🙂

    My current first line is from The House on Foster Hill by Jaime Jo Wright –

    “Death had a way of creeping up on a soul, and Ivy Thorpe was determined that when it visited her, she would not be surprised.”

    • rbclibrary January 19, 2018 at 11:17 am #

      I am so excited to read House on Foster Hill with my book club in March. Snow on The Tulips is great too!

  8. Paula Shreckhise January 19, 2018 at 1:02 pm #

    My first paragraph is from Melody of the Soul from Liz Tolsma:

    Anna Zadokova held her mother’s tiny body close. If only she could imprint the feel of her on her skin. She breathed in her scent, a combination of rose water and fried onions. Everything she loved best about her. A light mist dampened them both.

    • rbclibrary January 19, 2018 at 4:02 pm #

      Great minds!

  9. Kara January 19, 2018 at 1:16 pm #

    Ooo, that’s a great first line. And the synopsis sounds intriguing! I’ve never read one of her books before.

    • rbclibrary January 19, 2018 at 4:02 pm #

      Snow on The Tulips is hr debut novel. Excellent!

  10. carylkane January 19, 2018 at 1:33 pm #


    Two Years Earlier

    Renee huddled in the garden shed in her pajamas and tried to hear him over the pounding of her heart in her ears. – Beneath Copper Falls by Colleen Coble

    Happy Friday and happy reading!

    • rbclibrary January 19, 2018 at 4:03 pm #

      Great book!

  11. Nicole Santana January 19, 2018 at 2:43 pm #

    I’m starting this book next. I can’t wait as I’ve heard some really good things.

    Happy Friday!

    Over on my blog, I am featuring Brett Armstrong’s novel Destitutio Quod Remissio. It’s an interesting read so far. Here I will post the first lines from chapter four of this book.

    “The streets were filled beyond the usual that day, or perhaps it only appeared so to Marcus. The market district was expansive enough to accommodate thousands. Over it looked the tall stone buildings surrounding the huge open Forum that was the city’s center for centuries. All of the grand structures were washed white by the noon’s radiance and loomed large over the transactions of Rome’s citizens.”

    • rbclibrary January 19, 2018 at 4:01 pm #

      Will be interested to hear your thoughts when you are finished. Happy Friday!

  12. bettylouise31 January 19, 2018 at 6:04 pm #

    I can’t read most books about World Two as I have memories and all are negatives especially those set in Eastern Europe. I am featuring one of my favorite series, Mattie Winston. The link is

    • rbclibrary January 19, 2018 at 6:47 pm #

      Bless you! Thanks for sharing your link!

      • bettylouise31 January 19, 2018 at 6:52 pm #

        Thanks for the visit and comment.

      • rbclibrary January 19, 2018 at 7:06 pm #


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