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The Best of Adam Sharp
Cover of The Best of Adam Sharp
The Best of Adam Sharp
A Novel
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"This dazzling story about a former pianist who has a second chance in midlife with his former actress flame will do some major heart-warming this Spring — and readers will never foresee the incredible ending." —POPSUGAR

"It's a fun sweet ride." —The Washington Post

One of Glamour Magazine's "Most Anticipated Books of 2017"

"An extraordinary literary treat that reminds readers the best things in life have nothing to do with plans." —20 Must-Read Books for Spring 2017,Redbook.com


Two decades ago, Adam Sharp's piano playing led him into a passionate relationship with Angelina Brown, an intelligent and strong-willed actress. They had a chance at something more—but Adam didn't take it.

Now, on the cusp of turning fifty, Adam likes his life. He's happy with his partner Claire, he excels in music trivia at quiz night at the local pub, he looks after his mother, and he does the occasional consulting job in IT. But he can never quite shake off his nostalgia for what might have been.

And then, out of nowhere, from the other side of the world, Angelina gets in touch. What does she want? Does Adam dare to live dangerously?

Set to the soundtrack of our lives, The Best of Adam Sharp follows along with emotion and humor as one man looks back on his past and decides if having a second chance is worth the risk.

"This dazzling story about a former pianist who has a second chance in midlife with his former actress flame will do some major heart-warming this Spring — and readers will never foresee the incredible ending." —POPSUGAR

"It's a fun sweet ride." —The Washington Post

One of Glamour Magazine's "Most Anticipated Books of 2017"

"An extraordinary literary treat that reminds readers the best things in life have nothing to do with plans." —20 Must-Read Books for Spring 2017,Redbook.com


Two decades ago, Adam Sharp's piano playing led him into a passionate relationship with Angelina Brown, an intelligent and strong-willed actress. They had a chance at something more—but Adam didn't take it.

Now, on the cusp of turning fifty, Adam likes his life. He's happy with his partner Claire, he excels in music trivia at quiz night at the local pub, he looks after his mother, and he does the occasional consulting job in IT. But he can never quite shake off his nostalgia for what might have been.

And then, out of nowhere, from the other side of the world, Angelina gets in touch. What does she want? Does Adam dare to live dangerously?

Set to the soundtrack of our lives, The Best of Adam Sharp follows along with emotion and humor as one man looks back on his past and decides if having a second chance is worth the risk.

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About the Author-
  • GRAEME SIMSION is a former IT consultant and the author of two nonfiction books on database design who decided, at the age of fifty, to turn his hand to fiction. His first novel, The Rosie Project, was published in 2013 and translation rights have been sold in over thirty-five languages. Graeme lives in Australia with his wife, Anne, and their two children.
Reviews-
  • Publisher's Weekly

    March 6, 2017
    In Simsion’s third novel (after The Rosie Effect), an email from an old flame, Angelina Brown, spurs British computer guy Adam Sharp to reassess what he wants from life. Though their affair was short-lived and over two decades before, Adam still believes Angelina is his soul mate. He’s been involved with Claire for decades, but their relationship is mostly practical, and a business deal might require her to move from England to the U.S. Email flirtations with Angelina escalate into Skype conversations and culminate in an invitation to join Angelina and her affable husband, Charlie, at their vacation house in France. At this point, Sharp’s book takes an unexpected turn. What seems like a run-of-the-mill chick-lit tale about “the one that got away” becomes a complicated exploration of marriage, what it means to love someone, and how life gets in the way. Adam propels himself into this situation assuming he knows how things are going to play out. Charlie turns out to be more than his amiable, accommodating first impression would indicate, and Angelina shows facets of herself that are a touch more complicated than the girl-of-Adam’s-dreams trope. The contrast almost makes this feel like two different novels. The story winds down with a great passive-aggressive song trivia contest, and Simsion delivers an ending that feels hard-won and true, though readers will have to tough out getting there with a little patience.

  • Kirkus

    March 1, 2017
    Simsion makes a clear departure from the world of The Rosie Project (2013) and provides a soundtrack to this story of love in two parts.Adam Sharp usually reserves reminiscing about his stint as an IT consultant in Melbourne for when he's listening to sad songs of lost love. But a one-word email from his ex-lover is powerful enough motivation to get him questioning his choices over the last 22 years. When "hi" hits his inbox, Adam is living a life of routine in England. His long-term relationship with fellow IT professional Claire is more friendly than passionate but extremely functional. Gone are the days where he is regularly behind a piano, singing to--or with--a girl. For Adam, that girl is Angelina Brown, who walked up to him at the piano in 1989 with mascara running down her cheek and asked if he could play "Because the Night." He ended by singing out to the man who pulled her away, whom he later discovers to be Angelina's husband, with "a Lennon-McCartney send-off. 'You're Gonna Lose That Girl.' " The first half of the novel is devoted to Adam's affair with the young, up-and-coming actress, with music playing an essential role in their connection--something they'll never share with anyone else. Though "in the end it was [he] who lost the girl." Back in the present, the email exchange turns from playful to life-changing when Angelina invites Adam to stay with her in France. The consequences of reconnecting take on the physical form of Angelina's husband, Charlie, who reveals himself as an active player in this charade. Their week in France is a complicated unfolding that feels like its own book, a midlife crisis that develops in real time during which Adam's and Angelina's versions of the past collide. With a piano serving as their medium, they must reconcile the 20-something versions of themselves with the people now sipping on 1966 Chateau Margaux. A strong reminder of just how affecting nostalgia can be, but Part 2 of this love story is out of tune with its beginning.

    COPYRIGHT(2017) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

  • Library Journal

    January 1, 2017
    After The Rosie Project and The Rosie Effect, both LibraryReads Top Ten titles, Simsion gives us Adam Sharp, reasonably contented with his life but haunted by his long-ago affair with glorious actress Angelina Brown. Then she reappears.

    Copyright 2017 Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

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The Best of Adam Sharp
A Novel
Graeme Simsion
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