Herbert Simmons Man Walking On Eggshells
Man Walking On Eggshells is one of only two novels Herbert Simmons wrote (the other being Corner Boy). A dark and soulful story of a man growing up in the ghettos of St. Louis to become a great jazz trumpeter.
The book is a prose with pace and feels like you're listening to an extended jam session. If there is a story of one man's life seeking an identity through jazz, this is it. Man Walking On Eggshells shows the main character Raymond Douglas struggling with racism, drugs, family and his music to a profound degree. You become quickly engulfed in his world and you are touched by his journey.
The author and some critics have said the story was inspired by the life of Miles Davis. This I believe is possible but even without that as foundation this a beautifully written novel.
Man Walking On Eggshells continues to be one of my favorite books. A wonderful read that should inspire you to listen to jazz more closely and hear the story that each musician is telling you. It's one of those books that you will come back to time and time again.