The Book 

A riveting tale about a Black classical musician whose family heirloom violin is stolen on the eve of the most prestigious classical music competition in the world...

Ray McMillian loves playing the violin more than anything, and nothing will stop him from pursuing his dream of becoming a professional musician. Not his mother, who thinks he should get a real job, not the fact that he can’t afford a high-caliber violin, not the racism inherent in the classical music world. And when he makes the startling discovery that his great-grandfather’s fiddle is actually a priceless Stradivarius, his star begins to rise. Then with the international Tchaikovsky Competition—the Olympics of classical music— fast approaching, his prized family heirloom is stolen. Ray is determined to get it back. But now his family and the descendants of the man who once enslaved Ray’s great-grandfather are each claiming that the violin belongs to them. With the odds stacked against him and the pressure mounting, will Ray ever see his beloved violin again?  ~Publisher

Originally from Fayetteville, North Carolina, Brendan Slocumb started playing the violin at the age of nine and majored in music at the University of North Carolina. In addition to performing in orchestras, he also works as a teacher in kindergarten, elementary, junior high, and high school music education. The Violin Conspiracy is his debut work as a novelist, followed by Symphony of Secrets.  He is currently working on his third novel.  

An Evening with Brendan Slocumb 

Wednesday, March 20 | 7pm - 8pm | Virtual  

Moderated by Dr. Marica S. Taconi 

Distinguished Professor of Musicology, School of Music Associate Director, Pennsylvania State University 

Free and open to the public. 

“Engaging and suspenseful story about an aspiring musician and his great-great-grandfather’s violin….This novel, which will keep readers on the edge of their seats until the very last page, is sure to be a favorite ...

The Washington Post

"Magnificent, from the first page to the last, the pace never slackens. It is a gorgeous read. Old violins, international music competitions, human greed, determination, decency—all of these feature in this first-rate novel."

— Alexander McCall Smith, bestselling author of the No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency series

“The Violin Conspiracy reminds all of us that dreams are worth pursuing, no matter the obstacles in front of us. The struggle to follow your heart is always the same—and this novel inspires us to take the chance, make the leap, and dare to be better…”

— Misty Copeland, New York Times bestselling author of Life in Motion and principal dancer, American Ballet Theatre