Gr 4-7-- Romantic Russian composer Tchaikovsky is presented as gifted, absent-minded, nationalistic, devoted to family, and homosexual. This portrait of the troubled musician includes a complete time line and an excellent glossary. A note suggests searching record covers for further biographic information. The clear text is amply decorated with drawings, engravings, and photographs. Events recorded include his unhappy marriage, the relationship with his patroness, and the American tour during which he celebrated the opening of Carnegie Hall. Included are discussions of the composition of and public response to Romeo and Juliet, Swan Lake, 1812 Overture, Sleeping Beauty, and The Nutcracker Suite. The Sixth Symphony (the``Pathetique''), described as the ``most sincere of his works'' is suggested as a summary of the personal fate which he felt to be unduly harsh. The possibility of suicide by poison to avoid scandal is given serious consideration. Some parents may object to the honesty of this portrayal of a haunted genius, although there is nothing tasteless in this realistic presentation. This lucid, multi-faceted biography can support curriculum for young classical music students in addition to the standard Famous Composers for Young People (Dodd, 1939; o.p.) by Burch and Wolcott. --Reva Pitch Margolis, Norwood School, N.J.