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Daniel Mason   The Piano Tuner  
Daniel Mason  
Read an Interview with Daniel Mason

Read an Excerpt from The Piano Tuner

 

There are so many reasons why one would be oh so curious when it comes to Daniel Mason's novel, The Piano Tuner. Could it be that the first time novelist is only twenty-six years old? Could it be that he sold the book for hundreds of thousands of dollars, and that it set off bidding wars all across the world? Could it be that the author is a medical student at one of the top medical schools in the country? Could it be that the reviews for the book are across the board stellar—even Michiko of the New York Times who is famous for not liking anything gushed about it (well, as much as Michiko can gush). Yes, there are so many reasons to be curious about it, but there is only one reason why you should read it, and that's simply that it's a gorgeously written story.

Now I'm talking story in the old fashioned sense of the word, meaning you will immediately be drawn in right from the beginning and it has everything you would ever want: intrigue, travel, exotic locales, men in uniforms, beautiful women with secrets, native unrest, and at it's very center it has the unlikeliest of adventurers—a pale, tall, thin, gray haired piano tuner named Edgar Drake who apparently looks much older than his forty-one years.

At the beginning of the novel, Edgar Drake receives the most unusual of requests, which is to serve his country and majesty by traveling to the jungles of Burma to tune the 1840 Erard piano of Surgeon-Major Anthony Carroll, a man who's influence with the local princes of the region is critical for European power. (To find out why and how the Sureron-Major even came to having such a piano in the wilds of Mandalay, you'll have to find that out for yourself.)

Edgar Drake dutifully takes his mission, says farewell to his wife and his quiet life in London, and begins the adventure of his life. And, as Drake travels, so will you for Daniel Mason is a born storytelling with a writing style that's both lyrical and fluid.

Bold Type had the good fortune to catch up with the author while he was abroad on his book tour. We talked to him about his book tour, book number two, his future medical career, his writing process, and how he is fascinated by how sometimes reality catches up to fiction.

--Jenny Lee
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  Photo credit: Elena Seibert

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