by Suze Rotolo |



In 1961, 17-year-old Suze Rotolo met a young singer named Bob Dylan in New York City, and they later became lovers—it’s Rotolo who appears with him on the cover of ’63’s The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan. Her memoir is more portrait-of-an-era than tell-all, but there are delicious bits: the hours Dylan spent in front of a mirror, trying on rumpled clothes to perfect his serious image; his quietly telling Rotolo, after Columbia Records first signed him, “This is the beginning of what I have always known. I am going to be big.” His growing fame hastened their breakup (“I couldn’t handle being ‘one step closer to God,'” she writes) but Rotolo isn’t bitter. Through her eyes, we see Dylan as a unique artist on his way to greatness. She counts herself lucky to have been along for the ride.

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