Book Cover Image of Clifford’s Blues by John A. Williams

Clifford’s Blues
by John A. Williams

    Publication Date: Apr 01, 1999
    List Price: $20.00
    Format: Paperback, 309 pages
    Classification: Fiction
    ISBN13: 9781566890809
    Imprint: Coffee House Press
    Publisher: Coffee House Press
    Parent Company: Coffee House Press

    Paperback Description:

    “John A. Williams proves again that he is the greatest American novelist of the twentieth century”
    Ishmael Reed

    A black musician arrested by Nazis in 1930s Germany endures the horrors of the Dachau death camp in this harrowing novel based on a true story!

    A self-proclaimed “gay negro” from New Orleans, Clifford Pepperidge made his name in the smoky nightclubs of Harlem in the 1920s, playing piano alongside Bessie Smith, Duke Ellington, and other jazz greats. A decade later, he thrills crowds nightly in the cabarets of Weimar Berlin. But dark days are on the horizon as the Nazi Party rises to power. Arrested by Hitler’s Gestapo during a roundup of homosexuals, Clifford finds himself placed in “protective custody” and transported to a concentration camp. Stripped of his dignity and his identity, and plunged into a nightmare of forced labor, starvation, and abuse, he seeks escape in his music. When a camp SS officer and jazz aficionado recognizes Clifford, the gentle musician learns just how far a desperate man will go in order to survive.

    Shining a light on a little-known aspect of the Holocaust, Clifford’s Blues is a disturbing portrait of a dark era in world history and a poignant celebration of the resilience of the human spirit and the power of music.

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