Book Review: Sheet Music

Rob Sheffield

Sheet Music

Die-hard fans won't find anything revelatory in Rob Sheffield's new biography/eulogy, but at least they'll be in good company. The longtime Rolling Stone contributor blends biography and introspection in On Bowie, which reads like a collection of cover stories rather than a cohesive narrative. Each of the singer's classic albums through Let's Dance merits its own chapter, while his entire late-Eighties and Nineties output gets reduced to a footnote in the final 30 pages. Sheffield dares readers to keep up with his brisk pacing, and he definitely reaches in comparing the Thin White Duke to C-3PO, Josie & the Pussycats, and Atlanta trap-rapper Future within three pages. Yet in his personal relationship with the Starman's music, we're reminded how Bowie made us all feel like heroes.

On Bowie

by Rob Sheffield
Dey Street Books, 192 pp., $24.99

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