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Lady Sings the Blues by Billie Holiday
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Lady Sings the Blues (1956)

by Billie Holiday, William Duffy (Author)

Other authors: See the other authors section.

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541728,446 (3.85)16

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» See also 16 mentions

English (6)  Spanish (1)  All languages (7)
Showing 1-5 of 6 (next | show all)
Translating her voice is revealing. She doesn't talk much about men and I'm sure she was a handful. She was treated so badly by whites and cops and blacks for that matter. ( )
  mahallett | Mar 13, 2017 |
I am a big Billie Holiday fan, I have all of her music and once I start playing it, it so difficult to stop.
When I received it in the mail, the cover seemed strangely familiar. Then I read the first page three times and it hit me! I had read the first edition of this book when it first came out. I remember not being able to lay it down. She had happy moments in her life but not many. The end of her life was very heart breaking. When she sings her heart and soul come out with the sounds. Her troubles in love, in being black and living under Jim Crow Laws

It is too difficult for me to travel that road again. I do recommend reading and learning some about her life although it may not all be true, you can feel her sorrow over her own life and the racial hatred that all blacks experience through all the rules. Do not eat with the whites, do not stay in the same hotel, if there is not a separate restroom, then you have no place for yourself.

I received a finished copy of this book from the publisher as a win from FirstReads but that in no way made a difference in my thoughts or feelings in this review. ( )
  Carolee888 | Apr 30, 2016 |
This is Billie Holiday’s autobiography as told to William Dufty. It’s nice to hear things from her point of view, but it’s also very obvious that the book is very biased and a lot of things were left out.

Holiday’s story is not a happy one. From growing up in poverty to facing racism to drug addiction to jail time, she faced a lot of challenges. There were times when she seemed like a truly nice person, but most of the time she just didn’t come across as likeable, and the book was hard to read in places because of that. It also probably didn’t help that I’m not really a fan of her music. I wouldn’t recommend this one unless you’re a fan. ( )
  AmandaL. | Jan 16, 2016 |
I have been a fan of Billie Holiday's music for many years. I knew that she lead a hard life, but had no idea how hard until I read her autobiography. Her words are honest and frank--no holds barred. And it doesn't exactly have a happy ending. But now I have a greater appreciation for her work and admiration for what she was able to accomplish in spite of all that happened to her along the way. ( )
  meacoleman | Apr 27, 2014 |
Eleanora Fagan was born April 7, 1915. Her mother was only 13 and her father was pretty much absent. Eleanora was raised by family while her mother worked; her childhood was painful and short. At 13 Eleanora was working as a prostitute, by 14 she was singing her unique style of jazz as Billie Holiday in Brooklyn clubs. Racism and drug addiction dogged her for most of her career but her unyielding spirit could never by broken.

In "Lady Sings the Blues" Billie Holiday tells us her story in her own, bold words. There were parts of her story that made me cringe, others that left me behind. The stories are not necessarily shared chronologically and words aren't wasted on clarifications. Either you know who and what Ms. Holiday is talking about or you don't. If you don't you'll have to go elsewhere for explanations. Her autobiography is not what I'd call well crafted, but it is still well told. Through the rough edges of her prose Ms. Holiday reveals more of herself than would be found in any professionally written biography.

I'd recommend this book to anyone, but it would be particularly well received by those interested in Women's history or African American history. It's also a must read for fans of jazz. ( )
  aleahmarie | Mar 13, 2011 |
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» Add other authors (10 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Billie Holidayprimary authorall editionscalculated
Duffy, WilliamAuthormain authorall editionsconfirmed
Pelote, VincentTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Ritz, DavidForewordsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0140067620, Paperback)

This work presents the Billie Holiday story - her rise to the top from the slums and the streets, to the eventual slide down.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:09:06 -0400)

(see all 3 descriptions)

This work presents the Billie Holiday story - her rise to the top from the slums and the streets, to the eventual slide down.

» see all 4 descriptions

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