Fun fact: I started this as an audiobook but couldn’t stand the Daisy Jones narration but ultimately that’s what I heard every time Daisy Jones spoke in the book. So what I’m saying is: the voice Jennifer Beals picked absolutely fit the narrative (and is exactly how Daisy’s voice is described); I just couldn’t get into it even though I love a full-cast audio.
So anyway, yes, I loved this mostly because it’s a great character study and I love character studies. My favorite character is probably Pete (who doesn’t even do any narration)–(view spoiler)[okay, he has that one bit at the very end (hide spoiler)]–and my second favorite is Warren because they are legit the only ones that are all, “I mean, I’m just here to play music.”
I had so much to say when I first read this, but I don’t want to say too much to ruin the experience of reading it for anyone else. I will say, though, that this is a very different kind of love story, and I really liked the exploration of what love can look like and that it is not always a fairytale. I also am super into oral histories and since this is in the style of an oral history, it 100% worked for me. Also also also, I love the cover because it looks like an album cover and perfectly captures the mood of the entire story.
I also love Karen, but you knew that already. And Camila was also awesome. Okay, I loved all the female characters except Daisy–except that’s not even true. Daisy is a great character. I just wouldn’t want to be her friend is all. (I also wouldn’t want to be any of the guys’ friends except maybe Warren.)
(Also, I cannot believe I did not post this last year! I may have to do last year’s anyway. I started it but never finished, which ruined my streak. AND ALSO I DON’T KNOW HOW I FELT ABOUT BOOKS. What a tragedy.)
I’m trying something new this year, which is not repeating answers. So even if a book fit more than one category, I put it in the one I felt it best fit.
Number Of Books You Read: 48 Number of Audiobooks: 6 Number of Rereads: 4 Number Unfinished/Abandoned: 6 (2 of these were audiobooks)
Well, this was just awesome. I loved the narrative voice, the seamless transitions from past to present, and the characterization. That Stella is something else, but I think Bennett deftly shows how though her world seems larger, it’s actually just as small–if not smaller–than Desiree’s. I also appreciated the skewering of moderate racist White people.
All the characters here are sympathetic, and this just further proves my point that fiction can be a better entry point into anti-racist teaching than nonfiction. Also, as always, all Black lives matter and the reminder that “unimportant men were killed to make the point that they were unimportant–that they were not even men” (179) was as true in the 1960s as it is now.
I listened to the audio version of this, which I highly recommend. It’s like sitting in a room with her while she tells you her story. Plus, she sings! So that’s fun.
I appreciated Lewis’s honesty here, especially as she spoke of her sex addiction and bipolar disorder. I *loved* all the stuff about how she came to terms with her childhood and how she learned to forgive her mother. The story about the white man coming to the door and insulting her mother? WHEW.
Lewis makes liberal use of the f-word and isn’t shy about detailing her sexual history (there’s a chapter called “Dick Diva,” for example). If these are things that may offend you, probably don’t read this. But if you want a brutally honest account of working in show business while learning to accept and manage a mental illness, then definitely check it out.
Also, I totally want to hang out with Jenifer Lewis and Brandy. How do I make this happen?
Today’s A Month of Favorites topic is Top Ten Favorite Reads of 2015. There are still two days left in the year, so I feel like this may be too early, but! It is close enough to the end that it’s not weird. Also, if I’m being completely honest, I may not finish another book before the year is over. SO! These are the books I gave five stars on Goodreads. Click here if you can’t see them that well. That’ll take you directly to the list on Goodreads. Also: there are TWELVE.
That’s a pretty good mix of fiction, nonfiction, picture books, kiddie lit, middle grade, YA, and adult. I don’t think it usually works out that way.
The most recent book blog I’ve discovered is Thoughts and Afterthoughts, and I am finding all the posts delightful. Joey has a great style. I don’t actually keep track of WHEN I find blogs to follow, so that’s why the most recent blog will always win.
2. Favorite review that you wrote in 2014?
Ugh, I’m not super in love with any of my book reviews this year. I think they’re all fine, but nothing stands out as a favorite. Skipping this one.
3. Best discussion/non-review post you had on your blog?
5 Strategies for Reducing Student Email! Spring semester is about to start, so I’m really thinking about how to be as clear as possible in my writing so students can get their questions answered by the materials I provide.
4. Best event that you participated in (author signings, festivals, virtual events, memes, etc.)?
I really had a lot of fun with A Month of Favorites. I found some new blogs to follow and actually posted some good content. Apparently, having predetermined topics to write about helps a lot because I can plan ahead.
5. Best moment of bookish/blogging life in 2014?
Marissa Meyer did a talk at our local library and part of the swag she gave away was some awesome postcards. Since my friend’s daughter is a fan, I got one signed for her, and mailed it to her. The effusive thanks I received for that surprise gesture really warmed my heart.
5. Best series you started in 2014? Best Sequel of 2014? Best Series Ender of 2014?
The only series I started that I’m interested in finishing is His Fair Assassin by Robin LaFevers. Oh wait! I forgot that To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han has a sequel coming out next year. Add that one on, too.
Best sequel would have to be a tie between Marissa Meyer’s Scarlet and Jaclyn Moriarty’s The Cracks in the Kingdom. Obviously.
Since Blood of Olympus by Rick Riordan is the only series ender I read this year, it wins by default. I’m glad I liked it, though.
I’ve tried this a couple of different ways, and I’m stuck, so I’m just going to go with the questions from the prompt.
What month did you…
1. …read the least?
January. Poor January. I only read two books. I think that’s largely because of the back to school blitz, which makes sense because my September reading was also pretty low (4 books).
On the plus side, I really enjoyed both books I read!
The One and Only Ivan by Katherine Applegate
The Cuckoo’s Calling by Robert Galbraith (aka J.K. Rowling)
2. …read the most?
July. I read 9 books in July, mostly because of my weekly book club, but also because I read a couple of graphic novels. To be fair to the other summer months, though, I read 8 in May, June, and August, so it was almost a four-way tie. But, you know, July won by a book.
3. …read the book you liked LEAST for the year?
Also, July! The book was Kick-Ass by Mark Millar. Great artwork and an interesting story, but there was some casual and obnoxious racism and misogyny that I just couldn’t overlook. Blech.
(I should point out that it’s the book I liked least that I actually finished. I’ve DNF-ed around five books so far this year.)