Title: Daisy Jones and The Six
Author: Taylor Jenkins Reid
Publication Date: March 5, 2019
Genre(s): Adult, Contemporary, Historical Fiction
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Everyone knows Daisy Jones & The Six: The band’s album Aurora came to define the rock ‘n’ roll era of the late seventies, and an entire generation of girls wanted to grow up to be Daisy. But no one knows the reason behind the group’s split on the night of their final concert at Chicago Stadium on July 12, 1979 . . . until now.
Daisy is a girl coming of age in L.A. in the late sixties, sneaking into clubs on the Sunset Strip, sleeping with rock stars, and dreaming of singing at the Whisky a Go Go. The sex and drugs are thrilling, but it’s the rock ‘n’ roll she loves most. By the time she’s twenty, her voice is getting noticed, and she has the kind of heedless beauty that makes people do crazy things.
Also getting noticed is The Six, a band led by the brooding Billy Dunne. On the eve of their first tour, his girlfriend Camila finds out she’s pregnant, and with the pressure of impending fatherhood and fame, Billy goes a little wild on the road.
Daisy and Billy cross paths when a producer realizes that the key to supercharged success is to put the two together. What happens next will become the stuff of legend.
The making of that legend is chronicled in this riveting and unforgettable novel, written as an oral history of one of the biggest bands of the seventies. Taylor Jenkins Reid is a talented writer who takes her work to a new level with Daisy Jones & The Six, brilliantly capturing a place and time in an utterly distinctive voice.
TW/CW: drug addiction/abuse, abortion, infidelity
I’m going to start by letting all of you know, I am going to try my hardest not to compare this book to The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo. I know this is an unrelated story that just happens to also be by the same author. That being said, there are things that impacted my enjoyment that comparing to Evelyn Hugo will help me to better articulate.
“I had absolutely no interest in being somebody else’s muse.”
The plot of this book is super straight forward. The author is talking to the members of The Six and various others in the industry to chronicle the band’s rise to fame and infamous split.
I enjoyed how this book read like I was watching some documentary about a famous band of the 70s. You could feel the authenticity of the characters. Also, the different dynamics of the group were pretty interesting, most notably the dynamics between Billy and Daisy.
I really didn’t think this story was going to go in the straightforward direction that it did. I saw the abortion TW on Emmmabooks’ review and honestly thought a different couple was having the abortion if ya know what I mean.
I thought the tell-all exposé nature of the story was definitely its strength. I did chuckle a few times when you had vastly different POVs on the same event right next to each other. I also enjoyed how this book didn’t shy away from some of the more difficult subject matter: women’s rights, abortion, drug abuse, sex/free love. There were some great talking points discussed in this book. I also really enjoyed how sex was presented in this book. At first, it looks like it’s going to be a tale of woe of Daisy being taken advantage of before you see her not only reclaim her sexuality but wear it proudly. Karen was a great juxtaposition to this, actively doing or not doing things due to how she would be perceived yet still having this strong sexuality and confidence.
That being said, I didn’t connect with this story nearly as much as I did with Evelyn Hugo. I listened to both books via audio and for Daisy, I followed along with the physical book too, but something about it just didn’t suck me in. It might have been the documentary vs. interview style of writing. In Evelyn Hugo, I felt like the story was being told to me directly (through Monique), but for Daisy Jones, it was clear the story was told to someone else and I was just observing it. It was still an interesting story, but it didn’t get to me as much. Also, I’ve always been more into Hollywood and movies than music, so that might have also played a role as to why I connect with one more than the other.
Don’t get me wrong, Daisy Jones wasn’t bad. But this was a story that was meant to have a certain impact, and for the exception of one moment, it wasn’t there.
I also felt like the reason behind the band break up was supposed to feel like this big revelation, but personally, it didn’t really hit for me. I kept waiting for the bomb to drop, for the big reveal to come, and was a little disappointed when it didn’t.
“It’s like some of us are chasing after our nightmares the way other people chase dreams.”
I can definitely see why so many people love this book and I really enjoyed what a quick read/listen it was. This is definitely a book that is meant to be experienced via audiobook rather than traditional, physically reading. The overall plot was interesting, but interesting as a history bio or documentary is. Some great moments and some low moments. I enjoyed the authenticity of the characters, but I wish I just clicked with the story more overall.