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STARMAN: Bowie’s Stardust Years

By Reinhard Kleist

Paperback with flaps, 176 pp, $19.99

In 1972, the rock’n’roll messiah ZIGGY STARDUST was born. His provocative play on sexual identity and gender roles laid the foundation for David Bowie’s ascent to becoming one of the most successful pop musicians of all time.

Reinhard Kleist’s STARMAN weaves the gripping tale of this outrageous character’s genesis, rise, and fall, as well as of David Bowie’s hapless efforts in the London music scene before Ziggy’s arrival, and of the struggles he experienced with his own creation at the height of his fame. As Bowie transforms himself, ever more frenetically, into the egocentric rock star he first conceived, the extravagant lifestyle he had only ever imagined threatens to engulf him, and bring everything down before his eyes… 

Reinhard Kleist

Reinhard Kleist lives and works as a freelance comics artist and illustrator in Berlin. His international breakthrough graphic novel Johnny Cash: I See A Darkness was nominated for the Eisner and Harvey Awards and received the Max und Moritz Prize for Best German-language Comic. With The Boxer, he became the first cartoonist to receive the German Youth Literature Prize. Kleist’s other books include Castro, Nick Cave: Mercy on Me, An Olympic Dream and Knock Out!, all of which are also published in English by SelfMadeHero.


"Reinhard Kleist’s Starman: Bowie’s Stardust Years is a masterful synthesizing of all those changes and forces that assisted in the first birth of the artist that we know as David Bowie. Only a Pretty Thing, who learned about Life On Mars, could have done this."
— Paper Phoenix Ink
"Starman: Bowie’s Stardust Years, exploring one of the most important developments in popular music and performance art, is truly stunning. Not only does it look fantastic and read brilliantly, but is also inventively plotted with two timelines interweaving wonderfully throughout."
— Buzz Magazine
STARMAN "is yet another page-turner book about a rock legend who is perfectly suited for the medium. I think the highest compliment I can pay Bowie’s Stardust Years is to say that I read it all in one sitting, and then went right to my stereo to put on the Ziggy Stardust album afterward."
— The Beat