The strange allure of books with “piano” in their title

The amusing and occasionally hilarious Joe Queenan published this essay last week in the New York Times about his fascination with books containing the word “piano” in their title. He finds them almost guaranteed to lift him out of whatever low mood he finds himself in. The essay is a catalogue-in-miniature of recent works in fiction, memoir and non-fiction about the abiding intrigue of the piano. As someone working towards a book in which the piano will figure prominently, this was an encouraging sign – especially in the week leading up to Book Expo America, one of the largest publishing industry gatherings on the planet, which I attended on Friday.

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