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Coming Through Slaughter Paperback – March 19, 1996
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An Amazon Book with Buzz: "Sweet Sorrow" by David Nicholls
"With fully fleshed-out characters, terrific dialogue, bountiful humor, and genuinely affecting scenes, this is really the full package of a rewarding, romantic read."—Booklist Learn more
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"One of the most innovative and liberating writers of our time." — Geoff Dyer, The Observer
"A beautifully detailed story, perhaps the finest jazz novel ever written." — The Sunday Times
"Coming Through Slaughter ... is so stuffed full of the dolour and lust that both buoys and blemishes a life, it reads like a story dying to be told." — Books in Canada
From the Inside Flap
In this fictionalized meditation, Bolden, an unrecorded father of Jazz, remains throughout a tantalizingly ungraspable phantom, the central mysteries of his life, his art, and his madness remaining felt but never quite pinned down. Ondaatje's prose is at times startlingly lyrical, and as he chases Bolden through documents and scenes, the novel partakes of the very best sort of modern detective novel--one where the enigma is never resolved, but allowed to manifest in its fullness. Though more 'experimental' in form than either "The English Patient or "In the Skin of a Lion, it is a fitting addition to the renowned Ondaatje "oeuvre.
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Throughout the story the writer brings the reader into Bolton’s music. He breaks up voice and tone in scenarios with stunning paragraphs and narratives. It gives the book a haunting, frightening quality as Bolton slowly goes insane. This book is unique and brilliant—extremely moving.
Buddy Bolden, New Orleans cornet player, early jazz genius who dropped out of sight for two years and then made a triumphant if short-lived return, before dying in an asylum. This is the source. The facts about Bolden remain murky, and Ondaatje has created a life around him. It is a story as much about jazz, New Orleans, and decay as it is about the sad life of a single horn player.
Top international reviews
However have to give it 4 stars because . . .
what a great book. He takes you through unexpected (to me) types of writing, with a wonderful story and pure poetry prose.
I'm now reading "Skin of a lion" which is also a wonderful intriguing book.
I'm sure other people will write more eloquent, knowledgeable 2,000 word reviews.
For me, I loved it. Recommended
Reading this book I almost felt that I was living his troubled life, I was with him when he was at the top,and in those dark drug filled times at the bottom. But this more than a book about Buddy Bolden, it is a book about New Orleans at the dawn of the 20th.century, it's about living life to the full, and music that thrilled the world.
This is not an easy book to read, but it is a book that must be read by all jazz lovers, and is a lasting tribute to a man that influenced all the jazz greats who followed him . To read this is to truly know-- "What it means to miss New Orleans "