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Book Review

‘Hamilton: The Revolution’

6/15/2016

 

I love books as art — thick, heavy books with deckled pages, tons of glossy pictures and a cover that just screams, “Read Me.” The cultural phenomenon that is the Broadway hit play,  “Hamilton: The Revolution,” seems tailor-made for just such a book.

Lin-Manuel Miranda is brash, insightful, hilarious and a fantastic storyteller. book 6.16The beautiful chapters alternate between the actual text of the play with vignettes about the play itself, its beginnings and excerpts from Lin-Manuel’s notebooks. There are so many rich details about the behind-the-scenes process of creating the play that it often feels voyeuristic and raw. Everything from the music to the casting to the nail-biting description of the White House performance is honest, funny and more than a little bit magical. There are gorgeous sketches of the costumes, poignant and stunning photographs of the actors and remarkable pieces of history peppered throughout the book. In truth, it covers the American Revolution  — from the perspective of theater nerds of all stripes — and the musical revolution Lin-Manuel Miranda has started with this award-winning work.

This is a dense, magnificent book that shines much like its live-action counterpart. Lin-Manuel Miranda is the toast of the Broadway world at the moment, and this book is a brilliant examination of why. Des Moines may not get to see the show this year, but with this book and its capturing of the show’s history, music and incredible script, those of us who have to wait can join in the fun. It’s a great book for any history, theater or book lover. CV

By Lin-Manuel Miranda and Jeremy McCarter

HIV

Grand Central Publishing

288 pp

April 12, 2016

$40

 

 

Julie is a not-so-magical dragon who hoards books like gold and reads more before breakfast than most people do in a month.

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