Daisy Jones & The Six by Taylor Jenkins Reid
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
A good portion of the online book clubs picked this book this month and I felt like I wanted to see what all the fuss is about.
Daisy Jones and the Six is about a fictional 70s rock band and the drama surrounding the making of their album and the tour that they go on. The story is about what you expect. Sex, drugs, and rock & roll are on full display in this novel. Almost all the characters that we are presented with are fully fleshed out and have their own unique voices.
The thing that makes this novel the most interesting, in my opinion, is that it reads like a documentary transcript. All events are being described to you as though you would see them on a screen. Having grown up in the era of Behind the Music on VH1, I could completely visualize this documentary. I could see in my head the various performances, recording studios, hotels, etc.; that they were describing to me.
Unlike other novels that involve characters who are addicted to drugs and alcohol, this one tends to stay on the surface of addiction. The various consumptions of illicit substances are relayed to the reader in the way of hindsight. There's no depth or grit to it. I'd say this is probably the most disappointing thing about the story. While I do think the story works without such details, I don't think it goes as deep as it could have.
I will say that I cried a little at the end. The story isn't just about a rock band and their journey, it's also about personal journeys. There's a quote from the poem Nature Boy by Eden Ahbez that's been used in various formats over the years that I think is the main theme of this book. "The greatest thing you'll ever learn is just to love and be loved in return". Each of the characters is looking to be loved and learning to love others and themselves.
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