Peter Goldsworthy has an interesting writing style which is at first, perceived as present tense. Later on, the realisation takes place that he is writing it from the protagonist's point of view as an older person recounting the past.
It is a reasonably long journey that takes place, in which displays the main protagonist Paul Crabbe, his inner journey through adulthood and its affects on him later on in life. The decisions and choices he makes as a young boy are not forgotten, they still influence his everyday perspective on life.
As a young man, Paul Crabbe is ignorant of just how much this stage in his life is going to affect him ultimately. However, he is aware that the piano lessons from Herr Keller are necessary in order to fulfil his hopes and dreams for success, which in turn forms some sort of motivation for him to engage in the lessons. In addition to this, the professionalism of his teacher Herr Keller, gives him somewhere to aim for. Herr Keller is always searching for something more in Paul's skills, he is always pushing him further; hence, his learning experience persists.
This inner journey does not only consist of Paul's maturing piano skills, but also of his attitude towards life in general and the phases of life he endures. As he is a young adult, it is inevitable that he will experience different things and change his perspective on other components of life. For instance, his choices are affected by sexual urges that have recently taken a hold of him, such as when Herr Keller was finally telling him about his past and Paul leaves midway through his story, for the reason that Rosie was waiting for him in the car. He was aroused by the thought of a final night with her before he left for university. If he had not been influenced by this decision it would have saved him a lot of time in the long...