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From the Publisher2007 Outstanding Academic Title — Choice Magazine
"… its freshness of approach and practical knowledge of the music are enthralling."
"Peter Williams' observations in this … well-written volume add an imaginative and fresh dimension that will keep the 'little grey cells' charged. … This … volume could be a useful 'precursor' and we are the beneficiaries as a result."
—The Journal of the London Bach Society
"...Williams is a master of deconstruction, asking questions and speculating on every phrase of the text in a concise and precise manner, thereby revealing lines of thought that inspire further thinking and research by the reader. Definite answers are rarely possible, but this is a biography that inspires engagement, and is a necessary part of any library of anyone passionately interested in the life and work of the greatest of all composers."
—Choir & Organ
"… Williams is a writer both erudite and compelling … this is a biography unafraid to raise awkward questions and make a gallant attempt to answer them. … William's study, a substantial read, fills an important place in English language Bach literature."
—BBC Music Magazine
"Williams's book is dense and challenging ... a rewarding read, certain to enthral equally any lover of Bach's music and admirer of the techniques of forensic enquiry."
“...It is in this combination of musicology, common-sense psychology and an almost Shakespearean sense of drama that I find Williams at his best”.
—Newsletter of the American Bach Society