After having recently finished reading another fictional account of a fictional musical act (Nick Hornby’s “Juliet Naked”) I was still in the mood to “rock out” and since my Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) has made it so I can’t hear music (it becomes metal on metal sounding noise) reading about music was fun. I decided these fictional musicians were better than reading about real musicians because references to real music would just make me miss hearing it. So this month’s book review is of the novel “Daisy Jones & The Six” by Taylor Jenkins Reid. It’s an account of a fictional rock band’s rise and fall and is written like each of the band members (and affiliated people) are being interviewed. Get ready to rock on 🤘🏻 in this book review!
During this uncertain time of the rapid spread of COVID-19 I’m having to really manage how much I think and talk about things related to the virus and other serious matters. Therefore I am seeking out lighter things to read. I noticed that since my TBI (and really more in recent months) that I have a harder time stopping my brain from thinking about things incessantly. A common phrase used when talking about coma is that someone “awoke from” or “came out of” a coma. I was technically in my coma for three weeks in 2016. However, I feel like because my brain was so changed that even 3.5 years later, I am still “coming out of the coma.” What I mean by that is various things have taken me longer to get ahold of and gain that ability again. And some things that were dormant for the immediate years after the coma are slowly coming awake again. This was a long explanation to explain why I am gravitating towards novels that aren’t as gritty or hard-hitting and instead going for fun. That’s where “Daisy Jones & The Six” comes in. Even though it tackles tough subjects like addiction and the pitfalls of fame, it still read much faster and lighter than my typical fare (and for that I was grateful).
The entirety of the book is written like those interviews in magazines where it’s just the questions and answers reprinted. The twist is the questions the interview subjects are being asked aren’t included. And we don’t know who is asking the questions (other than someone writing a book about the band) until very far into the novel. With a novel like this where information is included very purposefully, it really stands out when things are purposefully left missing. I found myself wondering about the interviewer several times when the interview subjects spoke to them as if they knew them well. However, the book moved along nicely (the interview format made for really easy reading) so I kind of forgot we were missing a few pertinent details until they were revealed (a hint that the writing is strong, I think).
The story chronicles the rise and breakup of an American popular band (fictional) in the 1970s: “Daisy Jones and The Six.” The Six starts off as its own band founded by two brothers. They release an album and are moderately successful. Then their label pairs them up with Daisy Jones who has made one album but wants to break out and write her own stuff. The coming together of Daisy and the band is filled with the ups and downs that are associated with rock bands. They write and record an album and tour with the continuing of those ups and downs until the band breaks up. If you know anything about the real-life band “Fleetwood Mac” and its lead singer, Stevie Nicks, this story reads a lot like accounts of that band during that time. This is not a bad thing. I loved that this fictional band felt like a real band. There is strength in the realism. (When writing this blog I found this article written by the author [Taylor Jenkins Reid] and how she was inspired by Fleetwood Mac. This is from Reese Witherspoon’s website “Hello Sunshine.” Witherspoon chose this book to be on her reading list and she’s producing the TV series.)
I used to get an overwhelming feeling of sadness when I finished a novel. I was sad I had to leave those characters behind and no longer get updated on their thoughts and activities. I think this sensation can still happen to me but it didn’t with this book. I think partially because the author tied it up in a pretty neat bow at the end. And partially because I found out that there is going to be a small screen adaptation of “Daisy Jones & The Six” airing on Amazon. I think this book will adapt very well, so I will definitely check it out.
CreativityForDays Weekly Project
I am creating a homemade children’s book for the daughters of a friend. I’m just creating it by using blank cards so that I can mail it to them when I’m done. It’s almost complete. I will probably not get to mail it out until tomorrow. Here’s a picture of the cover. I may share it in more detail once they receive it.
Thoughts on the global pandemic (COVID-19)
Like I did last week, I’ve decided to write a brief summary of my thoughts this week on COVID-19 and the rapidly spreading global pandemic. I didn’t want to put out a blog post that ignored what’s going on. That wouldn’t be a true reflection of me currently (or the world).
I was having a video chatting session with my psychologist the other day (so thankful for technology and my access to it) and he mentioned he was glad I seemed to be coping well with the scariness of the pandemic. He said that oftentimes people who have experienced a sudden and shocking trauma or traumatic event (like my coma and TBI) tend to adapt and adjust better to other similar situations. I am reading a book where the central character is a doctor. This character observes that more privileged people have a harder time accepting bad news/diagnoses than people who are less privileged. And maybe that’s the silver lining to my personal trauma; I now know I can and will cope better with turmoil.
An @selbysweetie Conclusion
I don’t think I shared this picture of Selby in her hula girl costume. Hopefully it brightens your day! Aloha!