‘Fernando: Beethoven of the Guitar’ by Lou Marinoff is an interesting historical piece. Using fictional threads to “connect the dots” of a very real life, this book is both informative and entertaining and the first in a trilogy that shines a light on guitarist-composer Fernando Sor. The story flows through the famed Spanish composer’s early life, patronages, his participation in the Napoleonic Wars and his escape to France. Because Fernando became such a notable figure in Spain at the time, this is not just the story of one man. The author has skilfully woven the macrocosm of Spanish history and Napoleon’s many wars and ambitious plans for Spain into the story of this classical composer. I think, because of the author’s ability to weave in so much detail about the wider context and setting for the first part of Sor’s story that it would appeal to history fans, classical music fans, art historians and those who enjoy reading historical fiction. As the author says himself “where history is mute, creativity can speak” and in ‘Fernando’ creativity is an apparently seamless (to a layperson anyway) restoration on a brilliant though perhaps not well-known musical figure. ‘Fernando’ is cleverly and artfully written. The storyline is fluid and manages to engage while ever expanding to create a rich and vibrant masterpiece based on the greatest guitarist-composer of his time.