Macmillan Childrens Publishing Group
Magic in the Night

Magic in the Night

The Words and Music of Bruce Springsteen

Rob Kirkpatrick

St. Martin's Griffin


Trade Paperback

The definitive look at The Boss and how his music has both shaped and confronted American mythology

Emerging on the music scene with 1973's "Greetings from Asbury Park, N.J.", Bruce Springsteen was heralded as "the future of rock and roll", and since then his influence and popularity have exploded. Rob Kirkpatrick's Magic in the Night uses Springsteen's biography as a lens through which listeners can reevaluate his music as he morphs from "the next Bob Dylan" to a Reagan-era pop culture icon, and again to today's populist voice, discussing each album in chronological order. Kirkpatrick's keen insights show why the classic 1975 album "Born to Run" is the most popular album of all time (according to a recent ZagatSurvey) and what's made Springsteen the most respected and influential artist in rock music.

Though his career has been widely documented, Springsteen fans have never had a book like this one, which lets them immerse themselves in his music and learn about his influences, lyrical choices, and the themes Springsteen has been drawn to again and again in his career. Kirkpatrick's in-depth analysis of Springsteen's work–even unreleased songs–and the political controversies surrounding it make Magic in the Night a must for any true Springsteen fan.


Praise for Magic in the Night

“A treasure trove for serious Springsteen fans.” —PopMatters

“It is always salutary to be reminded that no matter how much you think you know something, there is always someone who knows more. And when it comes to Bruce Springsteen…Rob Kirkpatrick knows more, a lot more.” —The Irish Times

“Beautifully written.” —David Barker, editor, Continuum "33 1/3"series

“Other books have covered the life and works of popular musician Bruce Springsteen, but few offer the depth of analysis and critical assessment.” —Midwest Book Review (five-star review)

“A fresh, compelling look at The Boss's art, his life, and even his country.” —Library Media Connection

“Well-researched and written, this is essential reading for music fans.” —Scoop Magazine (AUS)

“Kirkpatrick argues convincingly that even the minor works of Springsteen the singer-songwriter are worthy of re-examination.” —Performing Songwriter

“Provides a comprehensive, insightful overview of Springsteen's prodigious catalogue of music. Rob Kirkpatrick's rich narrative sheds new light on the songs that have become a soundtrack for the American experience.” —Mark K. Updegrove, former publisher of Newsweek and MTV Magazine

“It was a joy to read through this book….Rob Kirkpatrick should be commended for his exhaustive research and insight. I've yet to come across another book which offers such a detailed and compelling analysis of not only the singer's art and life, but also the changes the US has gone through during this time span.” —The Crack (UK)

Reviews from Goodreads

About the author

Rob Kirkpatrick

ROB KIRKPATRICK is the author of 1969: The Year Everything Changed and Cecil Travis of the Washington Senators: The War-Torn History of an All-Star Shortstop, and he edited the multivolume Greenwood Encyclopedia of Rock History. He received his Ph.D. in English from Binghamton University and is currently a Senior Editor with Thomas Dunne Books. He lives in Rye, New York.

Rob Kirkpatrick

From the Publisher

St. Martin's Griffin

Latest on Facebook