The Gustav Sonata by Rose Tremain tracks Anton and Gustav through their lives. They meet as kindergartners in a small Swiss city shortly after WWII. Gustav lives with his almost penniless mother in a tiny apartment while Anton’s family, newly arrived from Germany, enjoys a very comfortable life. It’s quickly apparent that Gustav’s embittered, widowed mother is not pleased with his new friend. Shadows from the war and the boy’s differences challenge the new friendship. Beautifully written with a real understanding of the peaks and valleys of friendships over a lifetime.