Advance Praise for Edward Hamlin’s Sonata in Wax

Sonata in Wax is a terrific novel—immersive, compelling, smart, the story propelled by a cast of complex, full-bodied characters and the author’s absolute mastery of the musical worlds he conjures. Edward Hamlin confidently juggles two distinct time periods and sets of characters, and ultimately brings about one of the most satisfying, and thrilling, fictional denouements I have encountered in a long time. I’m knocked flat with admiration for this splendid novel.

— Ben Fountain, National Book Award finalist and New York Times bestselling author of Devil Makes Three

Sonata in Wax is an absolutely gorgeous novel and Edward Hamlin is an outstanding natural talent. He is so adept at capturing tone and mood on the page. I was reminded of Ian McEwan in the way that small details are used to build a big scene, and in the nuance he brings to Ben’s conflict over revealing the truth about the sonata. Sonata is a beautifully told mystery—I loved it.

— Jane Harper, international bestselling author of The Dry

Sonata in Wax is lush with music, mystery, and lyrical prose. Edward Hamlin manages to take the story of a lost sonata and transform it into a literary symphony. A wonderful debut novel!

— Dominic Smith, New York Times bestselling author of The Last Painting of Sara de Vos

Sonata in Wax is a masterful tale of art and ambition, war and illness, desire and discovery. Exquisitely crafted and vividly attuned to the intricacies of its fascinating characters, Hamlin’s novel sweeps across a century, unfurling the secrets of a sonata that becomes at once a totem of genius and the forbidden. I’ve rarely read a novel where music is such an astounding life force of its construction. This is a beautiful book, symphonic in scale, immersive in its depths, and morally complex in vision.

— Steven Schwartz, author of The Tenderest of Strings

What a feast! Edward Hamlin’s Sonata in Wax gives us a dual-timeline musical mystery, conducted in sentences every bit as lyrical as their subject matter. This beautiful, compelling novel demonstrates the timelessness and transcendence of music, even as we flounder through our own self-designed ruin. I’m so glad I read this book.

— Erika Krouse, Tell Me Everything: The Story of a Private Investigation

Sonata in Wax is pitch perfect. Through tender characterization and elegant prose, Edward Hamlin weaves together two seemingly disparate time periods—contemporary Chicago and WW1-era New England. Like the mysterious musical composition at its heart, the novel twists and plumbs towards a tumultuous and satisfying finish. Part homage and part elegy, Sonata in Wax celebrates musical heritage, and honors the unsung heroes whose ingenuity and sacrifice help art and humanity survive.

— Rachel Swearingen, author of How to Walk on Water

With the beauty and build of great classical music, Sonata in Wax interweaves a modern-day mystery with a World War I-era drama to create a novel unlike any I’ve read. Hamlin’s characters resonate with vitality, their struggles with poignancy and danger. When the threads finally entwine and the crescendo arrives, it does so with symphonic force. Sonata in Wax is a bravura performance from a writer at the top of his game.

— Paul Cohen, author of The Glamshack

In Edward Hamlin’s brilliant novel, past and present merge when a lost sonata’s restored beauty sheds light on the ravages of war and intergenerational trauma. Both epic and intimate, Sonata in Wax is a triumph of storytelling.

— Brendan Neil Casey, author of She That Lay Silent-like Upon Our Shore


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