Along the Way: The Journey of a Father and Son by Martin Sheen
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
I bought this audiobook forever ago. Seriously, it's been sitting in the queue for at least a year now. It was in the wish list probably about a year before that. I'm not sure what took me so long to get through it. Even once I started, it took nearly a month and a half to get through it. Again, I couldn't tell you why. It's completely engaging and earnest and should have captured my attention.
Along the Way is a story told in two parts. Written by the father/son team of Martin Sheen and Emilio Estevez it chronicles not only their time together making the movie the Way, but also stories of their lives growing up.
The memoir starts out discussing the movie that they made in Spain together but quickly morphs into Sheen telling you about his life growing up and the start of his career. They then start to intertwine their stories as one can only do when discussing lives that overlap like this. Their dueling perspectives become readily apparent when they start to discuss Apocalypse Now and the drama that surrounded that production. Sheen tells you his version and Estevez feeds off that and provides you with his interpretation of events.
The memoir moves along mostly chronologically, with the exception of the chapters about the filming of the movie the Way. These pieces are distributed throughout the memoir at times when the stories they’ve told you about their lives relate to the struggles they were going through during the filming. They discuss the parallels that their life paths took as well as insights into trying to make ends meet. Sheen himself offers the major of the wisdom given in this book, however, it’s clear that Estevez was never a “normal kid” and could very well be considered an “old soul”.
Going through this one as an audiobook once again proved to be the best way to get through an autobiographical memoir. The alternating voices of Sheen and Estevez provide you with an odd sensation of listening as though you’re sitting on the porch with them, silently listening to their stories as they recall turning points in their lives. It is clear that the two have a special relationship and bond. The only other duel memoir I've ever listened to was the Rainbow Comes and Goes by Anderson Cooper and his mother. This was not like that one, which was a conversation between the two. This one was simply the memoirs of two men whose lives are intertwined.
I definitely recommend this book for fellow memoir lovers.
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