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David Bowie's book publisher on his death: 'He was a true pioneer'

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Jimmy King

To David Bowie’s book publisher Martin Roth, the legendary singer was more than a musician; he was a unifier. Roth, who published David Bowie Is in 2013, the first title with access to the entire Bowie archive, opened up about the singer after his death on Monday.

“For me, David Bowie’s greatest significance was not only as a musician or outstanding performer but that he brought together millions of people across different generations, beliefs and interests all around the world,” Roth said. “He was a true pioneer and his death is a loss to us all.”

Although he himself never published a book, Bowie’s influence clearly reached the literary realm in addition to music and film. J.K. Rowing tweeted her sadness about his death, as did other influential authors like Neil Gaiman, Sloane Crosley, and Irvine Welsh. Bowie himself had been a vocal advocate for literature, saying that his idea of perfect happiness was reading.

Bowie’s family confirmed his death early Monday morning in a Facebook post, and revealed he had been battling cancer for 18 months. He released his final album Blackstar on Jan. 8.