[A] literary feast ... Walker’s MRI-thorough biography leaves no letter unopened, no salacious love story un-debunked, no scathing musical criticism untranslated ... Walker’s narrative style reflects the very music of his subject: He has a light, delicate touch when making apt inferences, and a soft and rather ornate style when providing descriptions of the artist ... already qualifies as one of the best biographies of the year.
The most comprehensive biography and musical analysis to date [on Chopin] ... This highly readable and engaging biography by an authority on 19th century Romantic music is suitable for professional musicians as well as music lovers and piano aficionados. It brings to life one of the 19th century's and Poland's most beloved, legendary, and celebrated artists. It deserves a place of merit at every university, music, and school library.
Is sure to become the definitive biography on the great composer ... General readers should find this accessible as well as engrossing, despite the abundant scholarly apparatus—annotated contents, list of works, illustrations, musical notations, and genealogical charts. Heartily recommended to everyone with an interest in the subject.