Author: Taylor Jenkins Reid
Page Count: 351
Format Read: Hardback & Audiobook
Genre: Adult Historical Fiction
Blurb as on Goodreads:
For a while, Daisy Jones & The Six were everywhere. Their albums were on every turntable, they sold out arenas from coast to coast, their sound defined an era. And then, on 12 July 1979, they split. Nobody ever knew why. Until now.
They were lovers and friends and brothers and rivals. They couldn’t believe their luck, until it ran out. This is their story of the early days and the wild nights, but everyone remembers the truth differently.
The only thing they all know for sure is that from the moment Daisy Jones walked barefoot onstage at the Whisky, their lives were irrevocably changed.
Making music is never just about the music. And sometimes it can be hard to tell where the sound stops and the feelings begin.
When I first started listening to the audiobook, I had no idea if it was fiction or non-fiction. 🤷♀️ I had heard amazing things about it so I was ready to use a ton of Post-its and make lots of notes for a proper review while reading along with the physical copy.
And when I finished it, all I could think was ‘WOW’, and also that I am royally screwed, because I didn’t take nearly enough notes.
So, now I’m wondering where to start. And I guess I’ll stick to the reasons why you must pick up this book (audiobook, if possible) if you haven’t read it already.
I’m not a fan of documentaries or biographies or memoirs, but this story -while it is not real – has the power to entrance, and enthrall you because it reads like it very well could be!
I was sitting in the living room of my cottage, looking out the window, my songbook in my lap, realizing that if I didn’t start trying – I mean being willing to squeeze out my own blood, sweat, and tears for what I wanted – I’d never be anything, never matter much to anybody.
This book has a different format from other historical fiction novels I have read – it’s a fictional mockumentary set in Los Angeles about a solo artist named Daisy Jones, and The Six, a rock band that made awesome music together back in the 1970s.
It’s told in interviews of various people from music producers, recording executives, band managers to friends and family of the band members and of course, Daisy Jones & The Six – all of them sharing their own versions of what really happened to this iconic band when they were on the verge of making it big, and instead, the band broke up.
There is so much going on with this story, mostly because of the people – not mere characters, they are people. Daisy Jones & The Six are as real to me now as they were while reading the book nearly 5 months ago!
DAISY: I had absolutely no interest in being somebody else’s muse.
I am not a muse.
I am the somebody.
End of fucking story.
Daisy Jones is beautiful. From the very first page, I cared about her.
An only child, she has never had anyone care about her, just been seen for her beauty. All through her childhood, no one took any interest in her or got to know her when all she really wanted was to connect with people. As a teen, she developed insomnia, read a lot, got into alcohol/drugs, the clubbing scene quite young. Her parents barely noticed her. No one cared until Simone, probably the only true friend she ever had. And by then, Daisy was scared of getting close to people, opening her heart to love, or letting people in. She built a strong outer shell, used whatever she could to drown her pain, worked hard at her craft, and partied harder than that.
You need one person who, when the shit hits the fan, grabs your stuff, throws it in a suitcase, and gets you away from the Italian prince.
The Six started out as a blues-rock band with the Dunne brothers (Billy and Graham) and grew into a six-people team over time. I never thought I would enjoy reading about a band’s rise to fame this much! Well, that and also the personal and inner struggles of the members – their addictions and vices, loves and dreams – they put everything on the line for this one record album, and then everything fell apart.
I always say I don’t care if you’re a man, woman, white, black, gay, straight, or anything in between – if you play well, you play well. Music is a great equalizer in that way.
Daisy and Billy are talented musicians in their own right, but together, they create extraordinary, powerful music. But they have a deeper connection than that. Daisy is everything Billy craves for and what he desperately needs to get away from.
For the length of this book, these characters came alive for me. And that’s how I still see them, as real people who lived and breathed and made music together long before I was born.
But if I did believe in them, I’d believe your soul mate was somebody who had all the things you didn’t, that needed all the things you had. Not somebody who’s suffering from the same stuff you are.
Because of the format, the audiobook with its full cast of narrators is the best way to read this book. It may well be the best damn audiobook I have ever listened to. I stayed up all night to know how it ends, couldn’t stop listening and then feverishly jotted down the words that were popping into my head right after I finished reading it. And I cried when it ended!
It’s very vulnerable, being an artist, telling the truth like that, like we’re doing now. When you’re living your life, you’re so inside your head, you’re swirling around in your own pain, that it’s hard to see how obvious it is to the people around you. These songs I was writing felt coded and secret, but I suspect they weren’t coded and secret at all.
I’m glad I was able to listen to the audiobook on Storytel before it was removed. Everyone needs to listen to this audiobook! The writing is great but the audiobook is a whole other tier of cake! The cast is fantastic and the narrators breathe new life into the characters and the story.
You know it’s a great book when the line between fiction and reality gets blurred. And you know it’s an awesome read when halfway through the story you’re wondering if maybe you shouldn’t have read this book first. Maybe you should have saved it for later because you can’t imagine any of the author’s other works will wow you as much as this!
Art doesn’t owe anything to anyone.
Songs are about how it felt, not the facts. Self-expression is about what it feels to live, not whether you had the right to claim any emotion at any time. Did I have a right to be mad at him? Did he do anything wrong? Who cares! Who cares? I hurt. So I wrote about it.
This book has officially put Taylor Jenkins Reid on my list of auto-buy authors! I am also happy to know that Reese Witherspoon is producing the TV series adaptation for it with Amazon Prime and that Sam Claflin will be playing the role of Billy Dunne. I just saw him in the Hunger Games movies and loved him! Go read the book now!
Trigger Warnings: alcohol and drug abuse, addiction, sexual assault, unwanted pregnancy, emotional abuse.
My Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
I was supposed to post this review on Tuesday but I was deeply immersed in the Hunger Games universe. I read each book then watched the movie back to back. Nothing could tear me away from Panem. 😍
Sorry about that, I will try to stick to a posting schedule from now on!