Anyone interested in Barber's life and/or music should seek out the amazing bio by Barbara Heyman, Samuel Barber - The Composer and his Music (Oxford U. Press). As a lifelong student of the career & music of Barber, I was upset to read this recent book. It contains numerous inaccuracies, half-truths, ambiguities, and similarly misleading statements. And was there ANY attempt at editing the ms? The text is likewise marred by errors in usage, punctuation, even vocabulary. The Britten section has the same problems. And while the recorded music samples on the attached cd are most welcome, they do not fairly represent the composers, either - it's all from the "middle period" of each man and don't properly represent either composer's stylistic breadth. The concept of a brief book introducing these composers to the lay listener, with listening excerpts provided in the package, is a fine one, which makes me doubly sad that this project is such a disappointment. P.S. Having heard from the author, I now understand why some of the above-mentioned faults exist - and must say I'm shocked that a publisher I once respected, Amadeus, would let something like this happen. It's a disservice to the author as well as the public and the subjects of the book.