Book Review: Daisy Jones and The Six by Taylor Jenkins Reid

Daisy Jones and The Six…

About the Book:

A thrilling story told in the form of an extended oral history, Daisy Jones and the Six transports the reader to the world of ’70’s rock ‘n roll; creative chaos, musical alchemy and an iconic sound.

There was Daisy, rock and roll force of nature, brilliant songwriter and unapologetic drug addict, the half-feral child who rose to superstardom.

There was Camila, the frontman’s wife, too strong-willed to let the band implode – and all too aware of the electric connection between her husband and Daisy.

There was Karen, ice-cool keyboardist, a ferociously independent woman in a world that wasn’t ready for her.

And there were the men surrounding them: the feuding, egotistical Dunne brothers, the angry guitarist chafing on the sidelines, the drummer binge-drinking on his boat, the bassist trying to start a family amid a hedonistic world tour. They were creative minds striking sparks from each other, ready to go up in flames.

It’s never just about the music…


My Thoughts:

Well, it was bound to happen. After a run of five and four star reads, it was inevitable I’d hit a wall at some stage. In my defence, this is not the sort of book I’d usually choose to read, so it’s probably no surprise that it really didn’t float my boat. It is, however, the six degrees title for January, and also my local book club title, hence it making its way onto my reading list. Generally speaking, I quite enjoy music biographies, so I’m not adverse to reading about rock stars and their lifestyles. I do find the 1970s sex, drugs and rock’n’roll scene particularly distasteful though; it’s truly not my favourite music era and I find it repulsive to read about how much alcohol and drugs a person can consume without dying. So, from the get go, this was probably not the best book to reader fit. Clearly, this is all my problem and not the book’s fault. But it does offer you some context.

In terms of creativity though, this novel is clever and unique. It’s set up from the beginning as a non-fiction account of a real band, there’s even a dummy ‘author’ note at the start, and the book finishes with the lyrics of each song from the fictional Daisy Jones and The Six album. The entire story unfolds in transcript format, extracts from all of the interviews the ‘author’ did organised chronologically to chart the rise and fall of the band. Stylistically, it’s clever, but for me, it made for very flat and boring reading. It put me in mind of my early journalism tasks, reading through transcripts to rewrite into news stories. Except this had a lot more pages. I posted on Facebook that I wasn’t really enjoying this book and the overwhelming response was that it was excellent…as an audio book. I can see how that would be the case, particularly if the narration was spot on, which it must be because so many people recommended it. I believe it’s being made into a TV series. Again, I can see how this would work. There’s something about the story that lends itself to being heard and watched. It’s just not (for me) very readable – all tell and no show.

There were, however, some stand out quotes that I wanted to include here, and it’s through these you’ll see perhaps why this book is enjoying so much popularity. It has a strong feminist current running through it – hence it gaining the Reece Witherspoon sticker of approval. I also just want to point out that I liked the little twist towards the end where we find out who the ‘author’ is. That was nicely done.

‘That’s how it was back then. I was just supposed to be the inspiration for some man’s great idea. Well, fuck that. That’s why I started writing my own stuff.’

~~~

‘She was a drug addict. The type of addict that thinks that other people don’t know she’s using, which is maybe the worst type of addict of all.’

~~~

‘Eddie: Daisy showed up in a thin tank top and these tiny cutoff shorts. Barely covered anything.
Daisy: I run hot and I always have. I am not going to sit around sweating my ass off just so men can feel more comfortable. It’s not my responsibility to not turn them on. It’s their responsibility to not be an asshole.’

~~~

‘I don’t believe in soul mates anymore and I’m not looking for anything. 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.’

~~~

‘I wanted drugs and sex and angst. That’s what I wanted. Back then I thought that the other type of love … I thought that was for other types of people. Honestly, I thought that type of love didn’t exist for women like me. Love like that was for women like Camila. I distinctly remember thinking that.’

And my absolute favourite:

‘Camila: It’s not my place to say what happened that day. All I will say is that you show up for your friends on their hardest days. And you hold their hand through the roughest parts. Life is about who is holding your hand and, I think, whose hand you commit to holding.’

☕☕+1/2


About the Author:

Taylor Jenkins Reid is the author of several novels, including The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo and Forever, Interrupted. She lives in Los Angeles with her husband, their daughter, and their dog.


Daisy Jones and The Six
Published by Penguin Random House Australia
First Released March 2019

21 thoughts on “Book Review: Daisy Jones and The Six by Taylor Jenkins Reid

  1. Hi Theresa, it doesn’t really sound like my kind of book either, but…that last quote was excellent. So maybe we can still discover some really good life lessons from books that don’t really tick our boxes.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I think I enjoyed it more than you (but not as much as others!) – it was a solid 3 stars from me, on account of the creativity of the format. I thought the author did well to create the characters and give them decent back-stories, in short bursts.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I’m with you: I have no interest whatsoever in the sex, drugs and rock’n’roll scene. After all, it’s not as if people don’t/didn’t know about the harm they’re letting themselves in for. The current fad for books about addiction holds no interest for me at all.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I had never heard of this book at all until last week, but I think yours is the 4th or 5th review I’ve seen of it since then. It must be the Six Degrees challenge which has prompted all the bloggers I follow to read it.
    These quotes actually sound rather thought provoking, if a tad heavy handed. It also seems quite conversational, so I can see how it might work as an audiobook. Because I’m blind and therefore use audio all the time, I will probably end up reading it sometime.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes, I’d say that six degrees bumped up the mentions of this one in recent weeks. Although I believe it also made a few best books of 2019 lists, so perhaps that has contributed.
      I would be interested to hear what you think if you do ever decide to read it.

      Like

  5. I have to say I’m super impressed you read the whole thing considering how much you weren’t enjoying it. I couldn’t have read it, I only got a chapter or so in and gave that up. Well done! Audio definitely is the way to go with this one.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I’ve avoided this one for this exact reason: SO MANY people REALLY love it, I feel like I’m bound to be disappointed. And sharing anything less than a glowing review takes a lot of courage, good on you doll 😉 I actually don’t mind the whole sex-drugs-rock’n’roll angle, but don’t love it so much that I’ll give this one a go despite the hype. I’d give anything to be a fly on the wall at your book club chat, though! 😉

    Liked by 1 person

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