Top positive review
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Into the frazzled world of alchemists...
on 21 January 2006
No doubting it, The Band were musical alchemists. Niven has written a novella inspired by listening to one of the greatest and most moving albums ever created. Members of The Band, mainly Richard Manuel and Rick Danko, are introduced to us through factual occurrances and imagined scenarios where the main character Greg is drawn into their circle of friends and hangers-on.
I am impressed by the merging of the real and imagined scenes: The mercurial, troubled Manuel is brought back to us in the prose and dialogue, and through references to his beautiful voice and songwriting on the Big Pink LP. If this book acheives anything for readers unfamiliar with The Band, it will move them to buy a copy of the remastered CD, or maybe even search out an original gatefold copy of the album.
A powerful, insightful and clever piece of writing.