When asked whether the Lucifer character in his Sandman comic book series was a tribute, Neil Gaiman stated, “Yes, the young, folk singer-period Bowie was the inspiration. I imagined Lucifer as a junkie angel, and young Bowie was the closest we got. ” Bowie was also a major influence for writer Grant Morrison’s interpretation of the Joker in Batman RIP, with one issue explicitly titled “The Thin White Duke of Death.
” Fingersmith by Sarah Waters The Bridge by Hart Crane Selected Poems by Frank O’Hara On The Road by Jack Kerouac (also rec’d by Bob Dylan & John Lennon) Octobriana And The Russian Underground by Peter Sadecky The Stranger by Albert Camus (also rec’d by Philip Seymour Hoffman) Flaubert’s Parrot by Julian Barnes “I really like him, it’s another world.
Laing The Brief Wondrous Life Of Oscar Wao by Junot Diaz Nights At The Circus by Angela Carter The Outsider by Colin Wilson Iliad by Homer Tadanori Yokoo by Tadanori Yokoo Last Exit To Brooklyn By Hubert Selby, Jr. Madame Bovary by Gustave Flaubert (also rec’d by Ernest Hemingway, Kim Gordon & Philip Roth) The Coast Of Utopia by Tom Stoppard English Journey by J.
Priestley Strange People by Frank Edwards The Songlines by Bruce Chatwin Nowhere To Run: The Story Of Soul Music by Gerri Hirshey The Fire Next Time by James Baldwin Lady Chatterly’s Lover by D. Lawrence The Origin Of Consciousness In The Breakdown Of The Bicameral Mind by Julian Jaynes A number of Bowie’s songs and film roles have literary roots: his 1974 album Diamond Dogs featured several songs – “1984,” “Big Brother,” and “We are the Dead” – that were originally written for a televised musical of George Orwell’s 1984, but the author’s estate denied the rights.
In 1976, he was perfectly cast as a space traveler in Nicolas Roeg’s The Man Who Fell To Earth, based on Walter Tevis’ 1963 novel of the same name. And in 2015, Bowie co-wrote a musical play called Lazarus with Irish playwright Enda Walsh, which was inspired by The Man Who Fell To Earth. Lazarus would be one of Bowie’s last works before his death.
On Having No Head by Douglas Harding The Trial Of Henry Kissinger by Christopher Hitchens Metropolitan Life by Fran Lebowitz Room At The Top by John Braine David Bomberg by Richard Cork The 42nd Parallel by John Dos Passos All The Emperor’s Horses by David Kidd The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald The Insult by Rupert Thomson Read on for a collection of David Bowie’s favorite books & comics. City Of Night by John Rechy The Street by Ann Petry The Master And Margarita by Mikhail Bulgakov (also rec’d by Patti Smith & Salman Rushdie) Vile Bodies by Evelyn Waugh The Inferno by Dante Alighieri email Halls Dictionary Of Subjects And Symbols In Art by James A.
Hall In Between The Sheets by Ian McEwan Maldodor by Comte de Lautréamont Sweet Soul Music: Rhythm And Blues And The Southern Dream Of Freedom by Peter Guralnick Writers At Work: The Paris Review Interviews edited by Malcolm Cowley Money: A Suicide Note by Martin Amis Fortunately, when Bowie left us in January 2016 to meet the starman in the sky, he left not only his legacy but also a lengthy book list. In fact, his son, Duncan Jones, recognized him as such “ a beast of a reader,” that in December 2017, he started a David Bowie Book Club for fans to follow along and discuss his late father’s favorites. Beano (comic, also rec’d by John Lennon ) The American Way Of Death by Jessica Mitford David Bowie’s a hard one to pin down: bold, beautiful, and an all-around bookish badass.
Rumored to have read at least a book a day (and perhaps as much as eight), Bowie’s described his songs as “ little stories set to music. ” And in response to the Proust Questionnaire‘s “What is your idea of perfect happiness?” his one-word response was “Reading. ” His love of literature had an undeniable influence on his artistic outputs and chameleon career from a young age: reading the works of Allen Ginsberg and Jack Kerouac’s On The Road at 15 gave Bowie the impetus to get out of Bromley.
The Sailor Who Fell From Grace With The Sea by Yukio Mishima Darkness At Noon by Arthur Koestler The Quest For Christa T by Christa Wolf (via David Bowie’s official site) Mr. Wilson’s Cabinet of Wonder: Pronged Ants, Horned Humans, Mice on Toast, and Other Marvels of Jurassic Technology by Lawrence Weschler A Grave For A Dolphin by Alberto Denti di Pirajno Black Boy by Richard Wright White Noise by Don DeLillo Tales Of Beatnik Glory by Ed Sanders Billy Liar by Keith Waterhouse Earthly Powers by Anthony Burgess The Bird Artist by Howard Norman Infants Of The Spring by Wallace Thurman Raw (comic) Silence: Lectures And Writing by John Cage The Gnostic Gospels by Elaine Pagels In Bluebeard’s Castle by George Steiner Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov (also rec’d by Kim Gordon & Patti Smith) Inside The Whale And Other Essays by George Orwell Viz (comic ) Herzog by Saul Bellow And influenced by William Burroughs, Bowie used the surrealist author’s cut-up technique (cutting words and phrases from newspapers and magazines and rearranging them) for songwriting inspiration. In a video spot, he likens the technique to “a kind of Western Tarot.
” (Decades later, Kurt Cobain also used cut-ups of his own poems to construct song lyrics. ) Burroughs interviewed Bowie for Rolling Stone in 1974, in which the two discussed creative control, growing up middle class, the power of art to change the world, the inspiration for Ziggy Stardust, and love and sexuality. A People’s Tragedy by Orlando Figes Puckoon by Spike Milligan The Prime Of Miss Jean Brodie by Muriel Spark Before The Deluge by Otto Friedrich 1984 by George Orwell (also rec’d by John Lennon, Stephen King & Steve Jobs) “A political thesis and an impression of the way in another country.
” -DB Blast by Wyndham Lewis Zanoni by Edward Bulwer-Lytton As I Lay Dying by William Faulkner Passing by Nella Larson The Life And Times Of Little Richard by Charles White Private Eye (magazine ) A People’s History Of The United States by Howard Zinn Mystery Train: Images of America in Rock ‘n’ Roll Musicby Greil Marcus (also rec’d by Bruce Springsteen & Kim Gordon) The Day Of The Locust by Nathanael West Mr. Norris Changes Trains by Christopher Isherwood Hawksmoor by Peter Ackroyd “There’s a great mysticism in his work. I’ve read everything he’s ever written.
That disquieting underbelly that he sees in London, that’s how I perceive it too. ” -DB Awopbopaloobop Alopbamboom: The Golden Age of Rock by Nik Cohn Teenage by Jon Savage Interviews With Francis Bacon by David Sylvester Beyond The Brillo Box by Arthur C. Danto Kafka Was The Rage by Anatole Broyard In Cold Blood by Truman Capote (also rec’d by Philip Seymour Hoffman) Transcendental Magic, Its Doctrine and Ritual by Eliphas Lévi Wonder Boys by Michael Chabon The Sound Of The City: The Rise Of Rock And Roll by Charlie Gilette McTeague by Frank Norris (also rec’d by Stephen King) A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess Journey Into The Whirlwind by Eugenia Ginzburg Sexual Personae: Art And Decadence From Nefertiti To Emily Dickinson by Camille Paglia Berlin Alexanderplatz by Alfred Döblin.