Type to search

Art & Photography Best Books Biography Education Fiction History Nonfiction

The Best Books About Or Featuring The Opera (Nonfiction & Fiction)

Share

“What are the best books about or featuring The Opera?” We looked at 327 of the top nonfiction & fiction opera books, aggregating and ranking them so we could answer that very question!

The top 32 titles, all appearing on 2 or more “Best Opera” book lists, are ranked below by how many lists they appear on. The remaining 275+ titles, as well as the lists we used are in alphabetical order at the bottom of the page.

Happy Scrolling!



Top 32 Books About The Opera



32 .) A History of Opera by Carolyn Abbate

Lists It Appears On:

  • Goodreads
  • Met Opera

Why has opera transfixed and fascinated audiences for centuries? Carolyn Abbate and Roger Parker answer this question in their “effervescent, witty” (Die Welt, Germany) retelling of the history of opera, examining its development, the musical and dramatic means by which it communicates, and its role in society. Now with an expanded examination of opera as an institution in the twenty-first century, this “lucid and sweeping” (Boston Globe) narrative explores the tensions that have sustained opera over four hundred years: between words and music, character and singer, inattention and absorption. Abbate and Parker argue that, though the genre’s most popular and enduring works were almost all written in a distant European past, opera continues to change the viewer― physically, emotionally, intellectually―with its enduring power.

Purchase / Learn More



31 .) Bel Canto by Ann Patchett

Lists It Appears On:

  • Goodreads
  • Wikipedia

Ann Pratchett’s award winning, New York Times bestselling Bel Canto balances themes of love and crisis as disparate characters learn that music is their only common language. As in Patchett’s other novels, including Truth & Beauty and The Magician’s Assistant, the author’s lyrical prose and lucid imagination make Bel Canto a captivating story of strength and frailty, love and imprisonment, and an inspiring tale of transcendent romance.

Purchase / Learn More



30 .) Death at La Fenice (Commissario Brunetti, #1) by Donna Leon

Lists It Appears On:

  • Wikipedia
  • Goodreads

“There is little violent crime in Venice, a serenely beautiful floating city of mystery and magic, history and decay. But the evil that does occasionally rear its head is the jurisdiction of Guido Brunetti, the suave, urbane vice-commissario of police and a genius at detection. Now all of his admirable abilities must come into play in the deadly affair of Maestro Helmut Wellauer, a world-renowned conductor who died painfully from cyanide poisoning during an intermission at La Fenice.

But as the investigation unfolds, a chilling picture slowly begins to take shape—a detailed portrait of revenge painted with vivid strokes of hatred and shocking depravity. And the dilemma for Guido Brunetti will not be finding a murder suspect, but rather narrowing the choices down to one. . . .”

Purchase / Learn More



29 .) Farewell To My Concubine (Pa-wang pieh Chi) by Lilian Lee

Lists It Appears On:

  • Goodreads
  • Wikipedia

Beginning amid the decadent glamour of China in the 1930s and ending in the 1980s in Hong Kong, this brilliant novel, which formed the basis for the award-winning movie, is the passionate story of an opera student who falls in love with his best friend, and the beautiful woman who comes between them.

Purchase / Learn More



28 .) Handel’s Operas, 1726-1741 by Dean Winton

Lists It Appears On:

  • Classical Net
  • Goodreads

Each chapter contains a full synopsis and study of the libretto, a detailed assessment of the opera’s musical and (often misunderstood) dramatic qualities, a performance history, and comparison of the different versions. Much new material has been incorporated. In addition four general chapters throw a vivid light on the historical background. Two Epilogues touch on Handel’s dramatic vision, the revival of his operas in the twentieth century, and their performance today.

Purchase / Learn More



27 .) Maskerade (Discworld, #18; Witches #5) by Terry Pratchett

Lists It Appears On:

  • Wikipedia
  • Goodreads

“The Ghost in the bone-white mask who haunts theAnkh-Morpork Opera House was always considered a benign presence — some would even say lucky — until he started killing people. The sudden rash of bizarre backstage deaths now threatens to mar the operatic debut of country girl Perdita X. (nee Agnes) Nitt, she of the ample body and ampler voice.

Perdita’s expected to hide in the chorus and sing arias out loud while a more petitely presentable soprano mouths the notes. But at least it’s an escape from scheming Nanny Ogg and old Granny Weatherwax back home, who want her to join their witchy ranks.”

Purchase / Learn More



26 .) Mawrdew Czgowchwz by James McCourt

Lists It Appears On:

  • Goodreads
  • Wikipedia

Diva Mawrdew Czgowchwz (pronounced “Mardu Gorgeous”) bursts like the most brilliant of comets onto the international opera scene, only to confront the deadly malice and black magic of her rivals. Outrageous and uproarious, flamboyant and serious as only the most perfect frivolity can be, James McCourt’s entrancing send-up of the world of opera has been a cult classic for more than a quarter-century. This comic tribute to the love of art is a triumph of art and love by a contemporary American master.

Purchase / Learn More



25 .) Nineteenth-Century Italian Opera: From Rossini to Puccini by Daniele Pistone

Lists It Appears On:

  • Classical Net
  • Questia

Intended for the performer and general music lover as well as for students and musicologists, this three-part retrospective of Italian opera of the romantic era focuses on the settings, characters, and styles of the librettos; the voices, orchestration, and formal structure of the music; and the contemporary exigencies of the performance itself, moving from behind-the-scenes administration and artistry to the front-and-center interpreters and the audiences they played to.

Purchase / Learn More



24 .) Opera as Drama by Joseph Kerman

Lists It Appears On:

  • Goodreads
  • Opera Pulse

Passionate, witty, and brilliant, Opera as Drama has been lauded as one of the most controversial, thought-provoking, and entertaining works of operatic criticism ever written

Purchase / Learn More



23 .) Opera Cat by Tess Weaver

Lists It Appears On:

  • Goodreads
  • Operaversity

From a brand-new author-illustrator team comes a humorous, heartwarming story about a special relationship between a cat and her owner. Alma the cat lives with Madame SoSo, an opera diva. When Madame rehearses, Alma softly sings along. Madame doesn’t know Alma’s secret—in fact, she doesn’t pay Alma much attention at all. But on the night of the big performance, Madame comes down with laryngitis . . . and at last Alma is given a chance to prove she is no ordinary animal. Accompanied by vivid, detail-filled illustrations, this story will resonate with anyone—feline or human—who has ever longed for a moment in the spotlight.

Purchase / Learn More



22 .) Opera For Dummies by David Pogue and Scott Speck

Lists It Appears On:

  • Aria Database
  • NPR

Opera is weird. Everybody wears makeup and sings all the time. Even when they’re singing your language, which is rare, you still can’t understand the words. Women play men, men play women, and 45-year-olds play teenagers. All the main characters seem to get killed off. And when somebody dies, he takes ten minutes to sing about it. Yet, for all its weirdness, an operatic experience is an experience in breathtaking beauty. When you hear a soprano float a soft high C, or a tenor singing a love song, or a full-throated chorus in the climax of a scene’s dramatic finale, you can’t help getting goosebumps.

Purchase / Learn More



21 .) Pet of the Met by Don Freeman and Lydia Freeman

Lists It Appears On:

  • Operaversity
  • Wikipedia

“A classic returns!
Viking is pleased to reissue this Don Freeman tale about an operaloving mouse. Maestro Petrini, the tiny page-turner for the Prompter at the Metropolitan Opera House, has always evaded Mefisto the cat until the day Petrini gets carried away by Mozart?s Magic Flute and joins the performers onstage.”

Purchase / Learn More



20 .) Photo Finish (Roderick Alleyn, #31) by Ngaio Marsh

Lists It Appears On:

  • Wikipedia
  • Goodreads

As in her previous book, Grave Mistake, Ngaio Marsh offers up a lady of a certain age, high-strung and hyperventilating, two ticks short of neurosis. Photo Finish’s dead diva, the soprano Isabella Sommita, was widely loathed, so much so that the problem is less a lack of plausible suspects than an embarrassment of options. Though the grand country-house – and with it, the country-house murder – was history by 1980, when Photo Finish was originally published, Dame Ngaio got around the problem by setting the story on a lavish island estate, cut off from the mainland by a sudden storm. Happily, Inspector Alleyn is among the guests, and can take charge in the coppers’ absence. The penultimate book in the series, Photo Finish is also one of only four books set in Marsh’s native New Zealand.

Purchase / Learn More



19 .) Saturday Afternoons at the Old Met: The Metropolitan Opera Broadcasts, 1931-1950 by Paul Jackson

Lists It Appears On:

  • Classical Net
  • Questia

In this first of three volumes, Paul Jackson begins a rich and detailed history of the early years of the Metropolitan Opera broadcasts, bringing to life more than 200 recorded broadcasts.

Purchase / Learn More



18 .) Sign-Off for the Old Met: The Metropolitan Opera Broadcasts, 1950-1966 by Paul Jackson

Lists It Appears On:

  • Classical Net
  • Questia

This second volume of Paul Jackson’s popular chronicle of the Metropolitan Opera Broadcasts covers the period from the beginning of the Rudolf Bing era to the destruction of the old Met and the move to its present home at Lincoln Center. Jackson looks at 200 broadcasts featuring artists under the leadership of a host of great conductors including Reiner, Mitropoulos, and Solti.

Purchase / Learn More



17 .) Sing Me a Story : The Metropolitan Opera’s Book of Opera Stories for Children by Jane Rosenberg, Luciano Pavarotti

Lists It Appears On:

  • Opera Cast
  • WOSU

Jane Rosenberg’s delightful retellings for children of the greatest operas―whether the tales are read as introductions to a opera or to relive a production already seen, art and text combine to give a clear understanding of plot, scene, and character. Young children in particular will enjoy reading the stories―or having them read―both as lovely fairy tales and to help them share in the magic of a real dramatic performance.

Purchase / Learn More



16 .) The Bel Canto Operas of Rossini, Donizetti and Bellini by Charles Osborne

Lists It Appears On:

  • Aria Database
  • Classical Net

The author treats each of Rossini’s 39 operas, Donizetti’s 66, and Bellini’s 10, discussing the libretto and the circumstances of each opera’s first performance, outlining the plot, and ending with an analysis of the music.

Purchase / Learn More



15 .) The Complete Operas of Mozart by Charles Osborne

Lists It Appears On:

  • Aria Database
  • Operamania

The major operas of Mozart—Don Giovanni, The Marriage of Figaro, The Magic Flute, Cosìfan Tutte—are well known to music listeners everywhere, having secured a permanent place in the repertoire of companies throughout the world. But how much do you know about La Clemenza di Tito, Idomeneo, L’Oca del Cairo, Zaide? Charles Osborne here provides detailed descriptions of all of these and fourteen others in a volume that serves both a first-rate biography and an exhaustive critical guide to the Mozart oeuvre. Charles Osborne is obviously in command of the literature: He quotes copiously from the mountain of letters, contemporary journals, and the most recent scholarship dealing with the period. His fourfold approach—linking biography with musical, textual, and dramatic analysis—is uniquely satisfying for those seeking an integrated understanding of opera’s many dimensions. With a plot summary and character listings of each work, The Completes Operas of Mozart can be read in one sitting for a panoramic sweep of Mozart’s operatic genius or for reliable reference by the phonograph or radio.

Purchase / Learn More



14 .) The Complete Operas of Verdi by Charles Osborne

Lists It Appears On:

  • Aria Database
  • Operamania

In this volume, every Verdi opera is explored from four points of view: Verdi’s life at the time each was written; the story, and the way it links with the music; the libretto and librettist, and Verdi’s relations with his publishers; and the music itself, analyzed with examples from the score.

Purchase / Learn More



13 .) The Dog Who Sang at the Opera by Marshall Izen

Lists It Appears On:

  • Goodreads
  • Operaversity

Pasha, a dog who believes herself to be beautiful and perfect, joins the company of “Manon” at New York’s Metropolitan Opera House, but on opening night she cannot resist singing along with the diva.

Purchase / Learn More



12 .) The Metropolis Case by Matthew Gallaway

Lists It Appears On:

  • Goodreads
  • Wikipedia

“An unlikely quartet is bound together across centuries and continents by the strange and spectacular history of Richard Wagner’s masterpiece opera Tristan and Isolde.

Martin is a forty-year-old lawyer who, despite his success, feels disoriented and disconnected from his life in post-9/11 Manhattan. But even as he comes to terms with the missteps of his past, he questions whether his life will feel more genuine going forward.

Decades earlier, in the New York of the 1960s, Anna is destined to be a grande dame of the international stage. As she steps into the spotlight, however, she realizes that the harsh glare of fame may be more than she bargained for.”

Purchase / Learn More



11 .) The Operas of Verdi : From Oberto to Rigoletto by Julian Budden

Lists It Appears On:

  • Aria Database
  • Opera Cast

“Volume 1 traces the organic growth and development of the composer’s style from 1839 to 1851–from Oberto to Rigoletto–and examines each opera in detail, offering a full account of its dramatic and historical origins as well as a brief critical evaluation. More than 350 musical examples make the significance of these early operas to Verdi’s developing style especially clear.
In the second volume, Budden covers those operas written during the decadence of the post-Rossini period. During this time Verdi, having exhausted the simple lyricism found in such works as Il Trovatore and La Traviata, found new life as he directly confronted the masters of the Paris opera with his Les Vêpres Siciliennes. The new scale and variety of musical thought that can be sensed in the Italian operas which followed is shown here to culminate in La Forza del Destino.
The third and final volume of the study covers the quarter century which saw grand opera on the Parisian model established throughout Italy, and the spread of cosmopolitan influences that convinced many that Italian music was losing its identity. Verdi produced his four last and greatest operas during this time–Don Carlos, Aida, Otello, and Falstaff–operas which helped inaugurate “”versimo,”” in which a new, recognizably Italian idiom was realized.”

Purchase / Learn More



10 .) The Perfect Wagnerite : A Commentary on the Nibelung’s Ring by George Bernard Shaw

Lists It Appears On:

  • Classical Net
  • Opera Cast

Now suppose a man comes along: a man who has no sense of the golden age, nor any power of living in the present: a man with common desires, cupidities, ambitions, just like most of the men you know. Suppose you reveal to that man the fact that if he will only pluck this gold up, and turn it into money, millions of men, driven by the invisible whip of hunger, will toil underground and overground night and day to pile up more and more gold for him until he is master of the world! – George Bernard Shaw (1898) In Der Ring des Nibelungen (The Ring of the Nibelung), Richard Wagner proposed to produce a myth in three complete dramas, preceded by a lengthy Prelude. Though famous for his music, Wagner proved in this masterpiece that he was much more than a composer. The philosophical theme of The Ring is as relevant today as when it was first written in summer 1848.

Purchase / Learn More



9 .) The Queen’s Throat: Opera, Homosexuality, and the Mystery of Desire by Wayne Koestenbaum

Lists It Appears On:

  • Classical Net
  • Goodreads

This passionate love letter to opera, lavishly praised and nominated for a National Book Critics Circle Award when it was first published, is now firmly established as a cult classic. In a learned, moving, and sparklingly witty melange of criticism, subversion, and homage, Wayne Koestenbaum illuminates mysteries of fandom and obsession, and has created an exuberant work of personal meditation and cultural history.

Purchase / Learn More



8 .) The Song of the Lark (Great Plains Trilogy, #2) by Willa Cather

Lists It Appears On:

  • Wikipedia
  • Goodreads

A novelist and short-story writer, Willa Cather is today widely regarded as one of the foremost American authors of the twentieth century. Particularly renowned for the memorable women she created for such works as My Ántonia and O Pioneers!, she pens the portrait of another formidable character in The Song of the Lark. This, her third novel, traces the struggle of the woman as artist in an era when a women’s role was far more rigidly defined than it is today.

Purchase / Learn More



7 .) The Viking Opera Guide by Amanda Holden, with Nicholas Kenyon and Stephen Walsh

Lists It Appears On:

  • Classical Net
  • Opera Cast

A detailed guide to operas, arranged alphabetically by composer, discusses monodies, masques, and grand, tragic, and comic operas, modern music dramas, operettas, and musicals and features contributions from musicologists, critics, musicians, and other experts.

Purchase / Learn More



6 .) Wagner Without Fear: Learning to Love – And Even Enjoy – Opera’s Most Demanding Genius by William Berger

Lists It Appears On:

  • Classical Net
  • Goodreads

“Do you cringe when your opera-loving friends start raving about the latest production of Tristan? Do you feel faint just thinking about the six-hour performance of Parsifal you were given tickets to? Does your mate accuse you of having a Tannhäuser complex? If you’re baffled by the behavior of Wagner worshipers, if you’ve longed to fathom the mysteries of Wagner’s ever-increasing popularity, or if you just want to better understand and enjoy the performances you’re attending, you’ll find this delightful book indispensable.

William Berger is the most helpful guide one could hope to find for navigating the strange and beautiful world of the most controversial artist who ever lived. He tells you all you need to know to become a true Wagnerite–from story lines to historical background; from when to visit the rest room to how to sound smart during intermission; from the Jewish legend that possibly inspired Lohengrin to the tragic death of the first Tristan. Funny, informative, and always a pleasure to read, Wagner Without Fear proves that the art of Wagner can be accessible to everyone.”

Purchase / Learn More



5 .) 100 Great Operas and Their Stories by Henry W. Simon

Lists It Appears On:

  • Aria Database
  • Opera Cast
  • WOSU

“An invaluable guide for both casual opera fans and aficionados, 100 Great Operas is perhaps the most comprehensive and enjoyable volume of opera stories ever written.

From La Traviata to Aïda, from Carmen to Don Giovanni, here are the plots of the world’s best-loved operas, told in an engaging, picturesque, and readable manner. Written by noted opera authority Henry W. Simon, this distinctive reference book contains act-by-act descriptions of 100 operatic works ranging from the historic early seventeenth century masterpieces of Monteverdi to the modern classics of Gian-Carlo Menotti.”

Purchase / Learn More



4 .) A Night at the Opera: An Irreverent Guide to The Plots, The Singers, The Composers, The Recordings by Sir Denis Forman

Lists It Appears On:

  • Aria Database
  • Goodreads
  • NPR

With an encyclopedic knowledge of opera and a delightful dash of irreverence, Sir Denis Forman throws open the world of opera–its structure, composers, conductors, and artists–in this hugely informative guide. A Night at the Opera dissects the eighty-three most popular operas recorded on compact disc, from Cilea’s Adriana Lecouvreur to Mozart’s Die Zauberflöte. For each opera, Sir Denis details the plot and cast of characters, awarding stars to parts that are “worth looking out for,” “really good,” or, occasionally, “stunning.” He goes on to tell the history of each opera and its early reception.

Purchase / Learn More



3 .) Handel’s Operas, 1704-1726 by Dean Winton & John Merrill Knapp

Lists It Appears On:

  • Classical Net
  • Goodreads
  • Opera Cast

This specially priced two volume set includes a reissue of the first volume, covering Handel’s operatic works from 1704-1726 and originally published by Oxford University Press in 1995, and Winton Dean’s acclaimed second volume (1726-1741), which first appeared in 2006. These volumes contributed to the revival of interest in these long-neglected works and are essential reading for anyone interested in Handel or the development of the opera as an art form.

Purchase / Learn More



2 .) Opera 101: A Complete Guide To Learning And Loving Opera by Fred Plotkin

Lists It Appears On:

  • Goodreads
  • NPR
  • Operamania

“Opera is the fastest growing of all the performing arts, attracting audiences of all ages who are enthralled by the gorgeous music, vivid drama, and magnificent production values. If you’ve decided that the time has finally come to learn about opera and discover for yourself what it is about opera that sends your normally reserved friends into states of ecstatic abandon, this is the book for you.

Opera 101 is recognized as the standard text in English for anyone who wants to become an opera lover–a clear, friendly, and truly complete handbook to learning how to listen to opera, whether on the radio, on recordings, or live at the opera house. “

Purchase / Learn More



1 .) The New Kobbe’s Opera Book by Anthony Peattie and Earl of Harewood

Lists It Appears On:

  • Aria Database
  • Classical Net
  • NPR
  • Opera Cast

In its 75th year, The New Kobbe’s Opera Book has been subjected to the most thorough revision in its history. The opera-lover’s bible from its first appearance, it has now been redesigned and extended, numerous existing entries have been completely rewritten, and the book now incorporates some 200 new operas. The total number of works covered is now nearly 500, including important new works like John Adams’ Nixon in China, Harrison Birtwistle’s Gawain, and Thomas Ades’s Powder Her Face, and a number of half-forgotten works that are now undergoing revival. 46 new composers are featured. Lord Harewood’s strongly individual commentaries, together with his unparalleled knowledge of and enthusiasm for opera, are complemented by substantial contributions from his co-editor Antony Peattie. This is a guide to virtually every opera the reader is likely to come across.

Purchase / Learn More




The 275+ Additional Best Books About Or Featuring The Operas



 

#BooksAuthorsLists
(Titles Appear On 1 List each)
33
2013-14 Season Book 2013-14 Season Book
Met Opera
34
2017–18 Season Book 2017–18 Season Book
Met Opera
35A Cadenza for CarusoBarbara PaulWikipedia
36A History of Opera: Milestones and Metamorphoses (Opera Classics Library) (Opera Classics Library Series)Burton D. FisherGoodreads
37A Knife At The OperaSusannah StaceyWikipedia
38A Short History of OperaDonald Jay Grout
Aria Database
39A Song for BellafortunaVincent B. “Chip” LoCocoGoodreads
40A Song of Love and Death: The Meaning of OperaPeter ConradGoodreads
41Abend in BayreuthZdenko von KraftWikipedia
42AmadeusPeter ShafferGoodreads
43An Aria of Omens (Wisteria Tearoom Mysteries, #3)Patrice GreenwoodGoodreads
44An Invitation to the OperaJohn Louis DiGaetaniOpera Cast
45Analyzing Opera : Verdi and Wagner (California Studies in 19th Century Music)Carolyn Abbate, Roger ParkerOpera Cast
46Angels and Monsters: Male and Female Sopranos in the Story of Opera, 1600-1900Richard Somerset-WardGoodreads
47Anna KareninaLeo TolstoyWikipedia
48Annals of the Metropolitan OperaMetropolitan Opera GuildOpera Cast
49Bantam of the OperaMary DaheimWikipedia
50Bayreuth : A History of the Wagner FestivalFrederic SpottsOpera Cast
51BeethovenMaynard SolomonGoodreads
52Beethoven: The Universal ComposerEdmund MorrisGoodreads
53BelliniArnaldo FraccaroliWikipedia
54Bodily Charm: Living OperaLinda HutcheonGoodreads
55Bravo! Brava! A Night at the Opera
Operaversity
56Callas: Portrait of a Prima DonnaGeorge Jellinek
Classical Net
57Carmen: LibrettoGeorges BizetGoodreads
58Caruso: Roman einer StimmeFrank ThiessWikipedia
59Catherine Hayes: The Hibernian Prima DonnaBasil Walsh, with Foreword by Conductor, Richard Bonynge
Classical Net
60Chagall and Music Chagall and MusicMet Opera
61Constanze – gewesene Witwe Mozart translated as: Constanze, formerly widow of Mozart: her unwritten memoirKlemens DiezWikipedia
62Cosi Fan Tutte : Mozart (English National Opera Guide, No 23)John NicholasOpera Cast
63Cosi Fan TuttiMichael DibdinWikipedia
64Crochets and QuaversMax MaretzekFive Books
65Crosby’s Opera House: Symbol of Chicago’s Cultural AwakeningEugene H
Classical Net
66Cruel Music (Tito Amato, #3)Beverle Graves MyersGoodreads
67Cry to HeavenAnne RiceGoodreads
68Daniel DerondaGeorge EliotWikipedia
69Das imaginäre Tagebuch des Herrn Jacques OffenbachAlphons SilbermannWikipedia
70Das Rheingold : Translation and CommentaryRichard Wagner, Rudolph SaborOpera Cast
71Das wilde Herz: Lebensroman der Wilhelmine Schröder-DevrientHermann RichterWikipedia
72Death at the OperaJohn GanoWikipedia
73Death on the High C’sRobert Barnard
Opera Pulse
74Der Ring Des Nibelungen : A CompanionRudolph SaborOpera Cast
75Der Sieg der Melodie: ein Puccini-Caruso-RomanMax KronbergWikipedia
76Die goldene StimmeErich EbermayerWikipedia
77Die Primadonna Friedrichs des GrossenOskar Paul Wilhelm AnwandWikipedia
78Die Primadonna: ein MozartromanOttokar JanetschekWikipedia
79Die WalkuereRichard Wagner, Rudolph SaborOpera Cast
80Diva : Great Sopranos and Mezzos Discuss Their ArtHelena MatheopoulosOpera Cast
81Don Giovanni in Full ScoreWolfgang Amadeus MozartGoodreads
82Don Juan in Hankey, PAGale MartinGoodreads
83DonizettiArnaldo FraccaroliWikipedia
84Ein Ende in Dresden: ein Richard-Wagner-RomanJoachim KupschWikipedia
85Ejs : Discography of the Edward J. Smith Recordings ‘the Golden Age of Opera, 1956-1971’ (Discographies, No 54)William Shaman, William J. Collins, Calvin M. GoodwinOpera Cast
86Eleanor Steber : An AutobiographyEleanor Steber, Marcia SloatOpera Cast
87Emblems of Eloquence: Opera and Women’s Voices in Seventeenth-Century VeniceWendy HellerQuestia
88Encore, Opera Cat!Tess WeaverGoodreads
89Encounters with VerdiMarcello Conati, Richard Stokes, Julian BuddenOpera Cast
90English Opera in Late Eighteenth-Century London: Stephen Storace at Drury LaneJane GirdhamQuestia
91Enrico Caruso : My Father and My Family (Abr Ed) (Opera Biography Series, No 2)Enrico Caruso, Jr., Andrew FarkasOpera Cast
92Expecting Someone TallerTom HoltWikipedia
93Farinelli, il castratoAndrée CorbiauGoodreads
94Feuerzauber: ein Lebens-Roman Richard WagnersMax KronbergWikipedia
95Fidelio: English National Opera Guide 4Ludwig van BeethovenGoodreads
96Final EncoreMartha AlbrandWikipedia
97First Night FeverHermann PreyOpera Cast
98Flügel der MorgenröteKurt Arnold FindeisenWikipedia
99Flying DutchTom HoltWikipedia
100Fortissimo: Backstage at the Opera with Sacred Monsters and Young SingersWilliam Murray
Opera Pulse
101Franco Corelli : A Man, a Voice (Great Voices, 5)Marina Boagno, Gilberto Starone, Teresa BreteganiOpera Cast
102French Opera at the Fin de Siècle: Wagnerism, Nationalism, and StyleSteven HuebnerQuestia
103French Opera, Its Development to the RevolutionNorman DemuthQuestia
104GambaraHonoré de BalzacWikipedia
105Giulietta Simionato : How Cinderella Became Queen (Great Voices, 4)Jean-Jacques Hanine Roussel, Samuel ChaseOpera Cast
106GoetterdaemmerungRichard Wagner, Rudolph SaborOpera Cast
107Grand Opera: The Story of the MetMet Opera
108Great Singers on Great SingingJerome HinesOpera Cast
109Her Deadly Mischief (Tito Amato, #5)Beverle Graves MyersGoodreads
110History of Opera (Norton/Grove Handbooks in Music)Stanley Sadie
Classical Net
111In My Own Voice: MemoirsChrista Ludwig, Regina DomeraskiOpera Cast
112InezCarlos FuentesGoodreads
113Inspector Morse: Masonic MysteriesColin DexterGoodreads
114Interpretation in SongHarry Plunket GreeneFive Books
115Interrupted Aria (Tito Amato, #1)Beverle Graves MyersGoodreads
116Inventing the Business of Opera: The Impresario and His World in Seventeenth Century VeniceBeth L. GlixonGoodreads
117Italian OperaDavid KimbellFive Books
118Janacek’s Operas : A Documentary Account by the ComposerJohn TyrrellOpera Cast
119Jon Vickers: A Hero’s LifeJeannie Williams, Birgit Nilsson and Jonathan VickersOpera Cast
120Jussi (Opera Biography Series, No 7)Anna-Lisa Bjorling, Andrew FarkasOpera Cast
121Konig und Kunstler: Roman Konig Ludwigs II. und Richard WagnerMax KronbergWikipedia
122La Dame aux CaméliasAlexandre Dumas filsGoodreads
123La DivinaAnne EdwardsWikipedia
124La Traviata [With 2 CDs]Giuseppe VerdiGoodreads
125Last Look at the Old MetJudith Clancy
Classical Net
126Lawrence Tibbett : Singing ActorAndrew FarkasOpera Cast
127Le crime de l’opera translated as: The Crime of the Opera HouseFortuné du BoisgobeyWikipedia
128Le Fantôme de l’Opéra translated as The Phantom of the OperaGaston LerouxWikipedia
129Les petits mystères de l’OperaAlbéric SecondWikipedia
130Life of Giuseppe Verdi: A Book for Young PeopleGiuseppe SignoriniGoodreads
131Lily Pons: A Centennial PortraitJame A
Classical Net
132Living OperaJoshua JampolGoodreads
133Love for Three Oranges AidaLeontyne PriceWOSU
134Luisa Tetrazzini : The Florentine Nightingale (Opera Biography Series ; No. 5)Charles Neilson GatteyOpera Cast
135M. ButterflyDavid Henry HwangGoodreads
136Madame BovaryGustave FlaubertWikipedia
137Madame ButterflyGiacomo PucciniGoodreads
138Maria By CallasMet Opera
139Maria Malibran : Diva of the Romantic AgeApril FitzlyonOpera Cast
140Maria Malibran: A Biography of the SingerHoward BushnellGoodreads
141Maria Meneghini CallasMichael ScottOpera Cast
142Master ClassTerrance McNally
Opera Pulse
143Master of Illusion (Book One)Anne RouenGoodreads
144Master of Illusion (Master of Illusion #2)Anne RouenGoodreads
145Memoirs of a SingerFriedrich BruckbräuWikipedia
146Memoirs of Lorenzo Da Ponte (Da Capo Press Music Reprint Series)Lorenzo Da Ponte, Elisabeth AbbottOpera Cast
147Metropolitan Opera Encyclopedia: A Comprehensive Guide to the World of OperaDavid Hamilton, editor
Classical Net
148Mimomania: Music and Gesture in Nineteenth-Century OperaMary Ann SmartQuestia
149Molto Agitato Molto AgitatoMet Opera
150More Than SingingLotte LehmannOpera Cast
151MozartMaynard SolomonGoodreads
152Mozart: A LifePeter GayGoodreads
153Mozart’s Women: His Family, His Friends, His MusicJane Glover
Opera Pulse
154Murder at the Opera: a collection of eleven murder mysteriesThomas GodfreyWikipedia
155Murder in the Opera HouseQueena MarioWikipedia
156Music of a LifeAndreï MakineGoodreads
157My friends from CairntonJane DuncanWikipedia
158New Grove Dictionary of Opera (4Vols.)Stanley SadieOpera Cast
159Of Lena GeyerMarcia DavenportWikipedia
160One Dead DivaPhillip ScottWikipedia
161Opera and DramaRichard Wagner, William Ashton EllisOpera Cast
162Opera and Drama in Eighteenth-Century London: The King’s Theatre, Garrick and the Business of PerformanceIan WoodfieldQuestia
163Opera and Politics: From Monteverdi to HenzeJohn BokinaGoodreads
164Opera and the Culture of FascismJeremy TamblingQuestia
165Opera Antics and AnecdotesStephen B. Tanner
Opera Pulse
166Opera in Italy Today: A GuideNick Rossi
Classical Net
167Opera in Paris, 1800-1850: A Lively HistoryPatrick Barbier, Robert Luoma (Translator)
Classical Net
168Opera in Seventeenth-Century Venice: The Creation of a GenreEllen RosandGoodreads
169Opera Odyssey: Toward a History of Opera in Nineteenth-Century AmericaJune C. OttenbergQuestia
170Opera: A Research and Information GuideGuy A. MarcoQuestia
171Opera: Desire, Disease, DeathMichael HutcheonGoodreads
172Opera: Parsifal, Salome, Mahler, Pelleas & MelisandeP. Craig RussellGoodreads
173Opera: The Art of DyingLinda HutcheonGoodreads
174Opera’s Second DeathSlavoj ŽižekGoodreads
175OpernballJosef HaslingerWikipedia
176Oxford Dictionary of OperaJohn Warrack, with Ewan West
Classical Net
177Pagliacci in Full ScoreRuggiero LeoncavalloGoodreads
178Painted Veil (Tito Amato, #2)Beverle Graves MyersGoodreads
179Penetrating Wagner’s Ring : An Anthology (Da Capo Paperback)John Louis Di GaetaniOpera Cast
180Pfitzner’s PalestrinaOwen Toller
Classical Net
181Phaidon Book of the Opera – A Survey of 780 Operas from 1597Catherine Atthill
Classical Net
182PhantomSusan KayWikipedia
183Phonetic Readings of Songs and AriasBerton Coffin
Aria Database
184Porporino, ou, Les mystères de Naples translated as: Porporino, or The Secret of NaplesDominique FernandezWikipedia
185Preparing an Operatic RoleMarie Myerscough and Sir Colin DavisFive Books
186Prima DonnaNancy FreedmanWikipedia
187Prima Donna, a novel of the operaPitts SanbornWikipedia
188Prince Orlofsky, Vampire HunterIsabelle GlassGoodreads
189Puccini: A BiographyMary Jane Phillips-MatzGoodreads
190Puccini’s Turandot : The End of the Great Tradition (Princeton Studies in Opera)William Ashbrook, Harold PowersOpera Cast
191Rates of ExchangeMalcolm BradburyWikipedia
192Renata Tebaldi : The Voice of an Angel (Great Voices, 2)Carlamaria Casanova, Connie Mandracchia De CaroOpera Cast
193Richard Strauss : a critical study of the operasWilliam Mann
Aria Database
194Richard Wagner : Der Ring Des Nibelungen, Goetterdaemmerung, Siegfried, Die Walkuere, Das Rheingold (Boxed Set)Rudolph Sabor, Richard WagnerOpera Cast
195Richard Wagner : The Man, His Mind and His MusicRobert W. GutmanOpera Cast
196Richard Wagner: The Last of the TitansJoachim KöhlerGoodreads
197Rosa Ponselle : A Centenary Biography (Opera Biography Series, No. 9)James A. Drake, James M. AlfonteOpera Cast
198Rosa Ponselle : American DivaMary Jane Phillips-MatzOpera Cast
199Ruffo : My Parabola : The Autobiography of Titta Ruffo (Great Voices Series)Titta Ruffo, Connie Mandracchia De CaroOpera Cast
200Se, döden på dig väntarMaria LangGoodreads
201Selected Writings of Luigi Dallapiccola, Volume One: Dallapiccola On OperaLuigi Dallapiccola, with Rudy Shackelford (Editor) and preface by Antál Doráti
Classical Net
202SerenadeJames M. CainGoodreads
203Siegfried : Translation and CommentaryRichard Wagner, Rudolph SaborOpera Cast
204Signora, a child of the opera houseGustav KobbéWikipedia
205Singer’s RepertoireBerton Coffin
Aria Database
206Singing in Imagination: A Human Approach to a Great Musical TraditionThomas Hemsley
Opera Pulse
207Soprano: a Portrait (U.K. title; published in the U.S. as Fair Margaret: a Portrait)Francis Marion CrawfordWikipedia
208Stage-struck; or, She would be an opera-singerBlanche RooseveltWikipedia
209Stories from the Opera
Operaversity
210Stories of favorite OperasClyde Robert BullaWOSU
211Tempesta’s Dream: A Story of Love, Friendship and OperaVincent B. “Chip” LoCocoGoodreads
212The AlterationKingsley AmisWikipedia
213The American Opera Singer : The Lives and Adventures of America’s Great Singers in Opera and Concert, from 1825 to the PresentPeter G. DavisOpera Cast
214The Assoluta Voice in Opera, 1797-1847Geoffrey S. RiggsGoodreads
215The Beggar’s OperaJohn GayGoodreads
216The BellsRichard HarvellGoodreads
217The Birth of an Opera: Fifteen Masterpieces from Poppea to WozzeckMichael RoseGoodreads
218The Birth of OperaF. W. SternfeldQuestia
219The Book of 101 Opera LibrettosJessica M. MacMurray
Aria Database
220The Book of Night with MoonDiane DuaneWikipedia
221The Callas Legacy : The Complete Guide to Her Recordings on Compact DiscsJohn ArdoinOpera Cast
222The Castrato and His WifeHelen BerryGoodreads
223The Complete Annotated Gilbert and SullivanArthur Sullivan, W. S. Gilbert, Ian BradleyOpera Cast
224The Complete Operas of PucciniCharles Osborne
Aria Database
225The Complete Operas of Richard StraussCharles Osborne
Aria Database
226The Complete Operas of Richard WagnerCharles Osborne
Aria Database
227The Concise Oxford Dictionary of Opera (Oxford Paperback Reference)John Hamilton Warrack, Ewan WestOpera Cast
228The Culture of Opera Buffa in Mozart’s Vienna: A Poetics of EntertainmentMary HunterQuestia
229The Definitive Kobbe’s Opera BookGustav Kobbe, Earl of HarewoodOpera Cast
230The Devil in MusicKate RossWikipedia
231The Dictionary of the OperaCharles OsborneNPR
232The Diva’s RubyFrancis Marion CrawfordWikipedia
233The Figaro PlaysPierre Beaumarchais
Opera Pulse
234The First ViolinJessie FothergillWikipedia
235The Gilded Stage: A Social History of OperaDaniel SnowmanGoodreads
236The Great Poochini
Operaversity
237The Great Singers: From The Dawn Of Opera To Our Own TimeHenry PleasantsGoodreads
238The House of Green TurfEllis PetersWikipedia
239The Inner Voice: The Making of a SingerRenée Fleming
Opera Pulse
240The Iron Tongue of Midnight (Tito Amato, #4)Beverle Graves MyersGoodreads
241The King and I: The Uncensored Tale of Luciano Pavarotti’s Rise to Fame by his Manager, Friend, and sometime AdversaryHerbert Breslin and Anne Midgette
Opera Pulse
242The La Scala Encyclopedia of the OperaGiorgio Bagnoli, Graham FawcettOpera Cast
243The Last Prima DonnasLanfranco RasponiOpera Cast
244The Maestro’s VoiceRoland VernonWikipedia
245The Magic Flute (Die Zauberflote) in Full ScoreWolfgang Amadeus MozartGoodreads
246The Magic Flute: An Opera by Mozart
Operaversity
247The Master Classes : Callas at JuilliardJohn ArdoinOpera Cast
248The Metropolitan Opera MurdersHelen TraubelWikipedia
249
The Metropolitan Opera Presents: Così fan tutte
Met Opera
250
The Metropolitan Opera Presents: Puccini’s La Bohème
Met Opera
251
The Metropolitan Opera Presents: Puccini’s Tosca
Met Opera
252The Metropolitan Opera Stories of the Great Operas (Vol. 1)John W. FreemanOpera Cast
253The Metropolitan Opera Stories of the Great Operas (Vol. 2)John W. Freeman, et al.Opera Cast
254The Moon OperaBi FeiyuGoodreads
255
The Most Beautiful Opera Houses in the World The Most Beautiful Opera Houses in the World
Met Opera
256The Mozart-Da Ponte Operas : The Cultural and Musical Background to Le Nozze Di Figaro, Don Giovanni, and Cosi Fan TutteAndrew SteptoeOpera Cast
257The New Encyclopedia of the OperaDavid Ewen
Aria Database
258The New Grove Dictionary of OperaStanley Sadie
Aria Database
259The NPR Curious Listener’s Guide to OperaWilliam BergerGoodreads
260The One TenorLindsay PerigoGoodreads
261The Opera CompanionGeorge Martin, Everett Raymond KinstlerOpera Cast
262The Opera-Singers WifeElizabeth Caroline GreyWikipedia
263The Operas of MozartWilliam Mann
Aria Database
264The Operas of Verdi : From Don Carlos to Falstaff (Vol. 3, Revised)Julian BuddenOpera Cast
265The Operas of Verdi : From Il Trovatore to La Forza Del Destino (Vol. 2, Revised)Julian BuddenOpera Cast
266The Oxford Dictionary of OperaJohn Warrack, Ewan WestOpera Cast
267The P. Craig Russell Library of Opera Adaptations, Vol. 1: The Magic FluteP. Craig RussellGoodreads
268The P. Craig Russell Library of Opera Adaptations, Vol. 2: Parsifal / Ariane and Bluebeard / I Pagliacci / SongsMahlerGoodreads
269The P. Craig Russell Library of Opera Adaptations, Vol. 3: Pelleas and Melisande / Salome / Ein Heldentraum / Cavalleria RusticanaP. Craig RussellGoodreads
270The Phantom of the OperaGaston LerouxGoodreads
271The Phantom of the Opera: Piano/VocalAndrew Lloyd WebberGoodreads
272The Plain Old ManCharlotte MacLeodWikipedia
273The PrimadonnaFrancis Marion CrawfordWikipedia
274The Queen of the NightAlexander CheeWikipedia
275The Random House Book of Opera Stories,Adele GerardWOSU
276The Rest Is Noise: Listening to the Twentieth CenturyAlex RossGoodreads
277The Ring of the Nibelung, Vol. 1P. Craig RussellGoodreads
278The Ring of the Nibelung, Vol. 2P. Craig RussellGoodreads
279The Rough Guide to OperaMatthew Boyden
Operamania
280The Soul of a Tenor: a RomanceWilliam James HendersonWikipedia
281The TenorPeter DanishGoodreads
282The Threepenny OperaBertolt BrechtGoodreads
283The Time of Our SingingRichard PowersGoodreads
284
The Toughest Show on Earth The Toughest Show on Earth
Met Opera
285The Trashcan Opera SocietyMarc McVeyGoodreads
286The Venice AdrianaEthan MorddenWikipedia
287The Verdi-Boito CorrespondenceMarcello Conati, Mario MediciOpera Cast
288The Young Cosima, a novelHenry Handel RichardsonWikipedia
289The Young Prima Donna: a romance of the operaElizabeth Caroline GreyWikipedia
290Theatre In Vienna: A Critical History, 1776 1995W.E. YatesGoodreads
291Three Mozart Libretti : The Marriage of Figaro, Don Giovanni and Cosi Fan TutteWolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Robert Pack, Marjorie LelashOpera Cast
292Tito Schipa : A Biography (Great Voices Series, Vol 3)Brian WilliamsOpera Cast
293Titta Ruffo : An AnthologyAndrew FarkasOpera Cast
294ToscaGiacomo PucciniGoodreads
295TrilbyGeorge du MaurierWikipedia
296TristanThomas MannWikipedia
297TurandotMarianna MayerGoodreads
298Turandot: Full ScoreGiacomo PucciniGoodreads
299Understanding the Women of Mozart’s OperasKristi Brown-Montesano
Classical Net
300Unsung Voices : Opera and Musical Narrative in the Nineteenth Century (Princeton Studies in Opera)Carolyn AbbateOpera Cast
301Verdi (Master Musicians Series)Julian BuddenOpera Cast
302
Verdi and/or Wagner: Two Men, Two Worlds, Two Centuries
Met Opera
303Verdi for Kids
Operaversity
304Verdi, oder Die Macht des SchicksalsHans Nowak and Georg ZivierWikipedia
305Verdi, Requiem (Cambridge Music Handbooks)David RosenOpera Cast
306Verdi: A BiographyMary Jane Phillips-MatzGoodreads
307Verdi. Roman der Oper (de) (Verdi: A Novel of the OperaFranz WerfelWikipedia
308Verdi’s Theater: Creating Drama Through MusicGilles De Van, with Gilda Roberts (translator)
Classical Net
309Vergittertes fenster: novelle um den tod des königs Ludwig II. von Bayern’Klaus MannWikipedia
310W.A. Mozart : Die Zauberfloete (Cambridge Opera Handbooks)Peter BranscombeOpera Cast
311W.A. Mozart : Le Nozze Di Figaro (Cambridge Opera Handbooks)Tim CarterOpera Cast
312W.A. Mozart, Cosi Fan Tutte (Cambridge Opera Handbooks)Bruce Alan BrownOpera Cast
313Wagner and PhilosophyBryan MageeFive Books
314Wagner and Russia (Cambridge Studies in Russian Literature)Rosamund BartlettOpera Cast
315Wagner in PerformanceBarry Millington, Stewart SpencerOpera Cast
316Wagner on Music and Drama : A Compendium of Richard Wagner’s Prose Works (A Da Capo Paperback)Richard Wagner, Albert Harry Goldman, Evert. SprinchornOpera Cast
317
Wagner’s Ring: A Listener’s Companion & Concordance
Classical Net
318Wälsungenblut (The Blood of the Wälsungs)Thomas MannWikipedia
319War and PeaceLeo TolstoyWikipedia
320Welt und Wahn, Barrikaden, Liebestod, Wahnfried: ein Richard-Wagner-RomanZdenko von KraftWikipedia
321Werther: Drame Lyrique En Quatre Actes Et Cinq TableauxJules MassenetGoodreads
322When the Fat Lady Sings : Opera History As It Ought to Be TaughtDavid Barber
Aria Database
323Where Angels Fear to TreadE. M. ForsterWikipedia
324Who Was Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart?
Operaversity
325Why come to Slaka?Malcolm BradburyWikipedia
326Wilhelmine Schröder-Devrient: der Schicksalsweg einer großen KünstlerinEva Fanny Bernhardine Turk Baudissin, Grafin vonWikipedia
327Women Who Made New YorkMet Opera


13 Best Books Featuring The Opera Sources/Lists



SourceArticle
Aria Database Operatic Books
Classical Net Books About Music
Five Books The best books on Opera
Goodreads Books about opera
Met Opera Opera History
NPR 5 Books To Ignite An Opera Obsession
Opera Cast The Collector’s Guide to Books on Opera and Related Musical Topics
Opera Pulse The Opera Singer’s Summer Reading List
Operamania Best Opera books
Operaversity OPERA BOOKS FOR KIDS
Questia Opera History
Wikipedia List of fictional literature featuring opera
WOSU Books on Opera for Kids