Top positive review
3 people found this helpful
on 10 January 2016
I haven't even finished the book - but I can't wait to share my joy in reading it. I am a German protestant church musician who fell in love with Bach with the first Bach cantata I sang when I was 14. But I have never read anything ABOUT Bach that came anywhere near the full-bodied vitality emotional range I experience in the music. Either it was dry analysis or genuflecting praise for the "Erzkantor". Boring.
The Bach I meet in Gardiners book, warts and all, is fully human, church and coffee house, brain and heart, a struggler and a worrier, and divine in all that.
Some reviewers criticise JEG's way of writing about many things that are "not Bach" - but I love it! Especially the humour that pops up in many places. When Gardiner describes the ease of the angels rolling away the stone from the tomb ("no hands!") or illustrates the idea of Kairos through Winnie-The-Pooh ("time for a little something") I know exactly what he means - and I take it in with a big smile on my face.
In short: a book to read - and re-read - and re-read. And most important: it inspires to listen to the music, play it, sing it. Alleluia!