Behind The Rainbow, Johan Bakker’s probing biography of Eva Cassidy, last night picked up the People’s Book Prize for non-fiction at a ceremony in the City of London. Helen Donlon, PR for the book’s publishers Omnibus Press, received the award from best-selling author, Frederick Forsyth.
Unlike other book prizes where winners are chosen by literary critics, The People’s Book Prize is awarded by a cross-section poll of readers.
“It’s nice to be recognised in this way,” said Omnibus senior editor Chris Charlesworth, “because rock and pop biographies tend to be ignored at awards gatherings in favour of what the judges consider to be more serious subjects.
“Eva Cassidy’s story is particularly poignant – the fact that she became so famous after she had died is tragic really – and I knew it would make for a moving book. Johann Bakker, the author, did a great job, especially as he’s a Dutchman and English wasn’t his first language.”
Bakker interviewed Cassidy’s friends, colleagues and family to uncover the details of her life and discover the person behind this tragic tale of short-lived musical excellence. The resulting book is a poignant exploration of her artistry, idealism and disillusionment with music as an industry.