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…
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.’
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