The Violin Family

The Violin Family


By Melissa Perley
Illustrations by Fiona MacLean

November 1, 2019

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Release Date: November 1, 2019
ISBN: 978-1-5786902-0-6
LCCN: 2019910335
Booksellers and Libraries: Order Here.


A wonderful introduction to the string family of instruments that shows young readers the power of music and of caring relationships.

Come meet The Violin Family: Basil, the Bass; Celia, the Violoncello; “Bizzy”, the Viola; and Val and Violet, the Violins! Together, they love to play music and then share a pancake breakfast, complete with local Vermont maple syrup—mm-mmmm!

This picture book for children is an introduction to the family of stringed instruments with a delightful pairing of fact and fiction. In meeting The Violin Family, readers have the opportunity to learn about the anatomy as well as the personality of each of the strings.

One day while the family is performing their music, Violet falls and has to visit the luthier to be repaired. Will her sound come back so that her family can continue to play together as a quintet?

This children’s book explores the power and value of both music and family. The book is authored by Vermont cellist Melissa Perley, with illustrations by Fiona Lee MacLean and is available November 1, 2019, by Rootstock Publishing.


The Violin Family is a delightful, warm-hearted book that introduces young and not-so-young readers to the violin family of string instruments. Author Melissa Perley, through clever and endearing storytelling, reveals each member of the violin family’s unique personality and role in classical music as well as in popular genres. Fiona Lee MacLean lovingly illustrates the story in playful colors and cheerful detail.”

Kari Juusela, cellist, award-winning composer, and former dean at Berklee College of Music.


“In this unique and charming story by first-time author Melissa Perley, The Violin Family celebrates the voices and musical personalities that make up a string quintet. Educational and entertaining, this delightful children’s book is soon to become a favorite of musicians and readers young and old. Fiona Lee MacLean brings the personality of each instrument family member to life with her sweet and colorful illustrations as the scenes of the story unfold.”

Jennifer Churchman, New York Times best selling author of Sweet Pea & Friends.


“While reading The Violin Family, my inner child wanted to do nothing more than be adopted into their happy family quintet and make music forever.”

Ron Thompson, Psy. M.A., author of On Cue: Managing Anxiety, Inviting Excellence, and former member of the National Symphony Orchestra.


Melissa Perley is a performing and teaching cellist. She lives in Vermont with her luthier husband, Paul, and family. Together Paul and Melissa own Paul Perley Cellos, a stringed instrument business.

Fiona Lee Maclean is a farmhand, naturalist, and illustrator. She spent her twenties as a naturalist—teaching kids to be comfortable-in and awed-by nature. That experience led her back to school to be trained as a science illustrator. She has learned that giving something attention helps you fall in love with it. Creating artwork based on nature, color, process, people, rocks, birds, blankets, mice (you get the picture) means she gets to fall in love (daily) with our world. She hopes that what she creates will help others do the same.