Monday, August 15, 2011

The Upright Piano Player by David Abbott

The Upright Piano Player: A Novel

The Upright Piano Player by David Abbott

The blurb:
Henry Cage seems to have it all: a successful career, money, a beautiful home, and a reputation for being a just and principled man.  But public virtues can conceal private failings, and as Henry faces retirement, his well-ordered life begins to unravel.  His ex-wife is ill, his relationship with his son is strained to the point of estrangement, and on the eve of the new millennium he is the victim of a random violent act that soon escalates into a prolonger harassment.

As his ex-wife's illness becomes grave, it is apparent that there is little time to redress the mistakes of the past.  But the man stalking Henry remains at large. Who is doing this?  And why?  David Abbott brilliantly pulls this thread of tension ever tighter until the surprising and emotionally impactful conclusion.  The Upright Piano Player is a wise and acutely observed novel about the myriad ways in which life tests us -- no matter how carefully we have constructed our own little fortresses.

Just how much does a successful man's life change when he retires from the company that he's built?  When Henry Cage's successful career and influence are gone,  he becomes just another elderly man among many.  David Abbott demonstrates the small ways in which Cage's life and luck has changed.  The crush of the crowds on New Year's Eve leads to a random and vicious act of violence.   I found myself sympathizing with Henry Cage as he finds himself uncomfortable in his new life - from his interaction with his housekeeper to the incident that gets him expelled from his favorite breakfast place.

Abbott has made Henry Cage complex and sympathetic.   As he tries to behave with integrity, he faces unexpected meanness and tragedy.  The Upright Piano Player is gripping, moving, and unsentimental.  It's a fascinating read that will stay with you long after you've finished the novel.

ISBN-10: 0385534426 - Hardcover $22.95
Publisher: Nan A. Talese (June 7, 2011), 272 pages.
Review copy provided by the publisher.

About the Author:
David Abbott worked forty years in the advertising industry as a copywriter and creative director.  He was a founding partner of Abbott Mead Vickers BBDO, the United Kingdom's largest advertising agency.  This is his first novel and he is at work on his second.


Double Day is generously sponsoring a giveaway of 2 copies of The Upright Piano Player.  To enter the giveaway, please share your favorite character in literature and why you like him/her so much.

1. Please include your email address, so that I can contact you if you win. No email address, no entry.
2. You must be a follower to join the contest.
3.  One winner per household.

The contest is limited to US only. No P.O. boxes. The contest ends at noon on Sept. 15, 2011.

No comments:

Post a Comment