• John Szwed’s swift, conversational and yet detail-rich new biography, Billie Holiday: The Musician and the Myth, communicates its artist-first priorities in the subtitle, and then makes good on them throughout … That’s about as fine a centenary-year gift as anyone had a right to expect.

  • Insightful, investigative… entertaining and illuminating … a wonderfully engaging and revealing look at the great Lady Day.

    The Scotsman
  • Illuminating account restores to the singer the dignity of a true artist.

  • A musicologist’s appreciation of the jazz singer… a marvel.

  • Szwed’s book offers a fresh attempt to understand and explain the nature and scope of Holiday’s achievement.

    Times Literary Supplement

Strictly Necessary


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