At the Guardian, Nadelson named her top ten jazz books.
One book on her list:
Coming Through Slaughter by Michael OndaatjeRead about another book on the list.
This is a brilliant novel imagining Buddy Bolden, the man many feel more or less invented jazz in New Orleans at the turn of the 20th century in New Orleans. There is no known recording of Bolden's music. And he spent the last decades of his life in a mental institution. Ondaatje's genius here is to re-invent Bolden and the world of Storyville – New Orleans Red Light District – and make us hear the music he played.
Also see: John Edward Hasse's five best books on jazz.