Cover Image: David Bowie

David Bowie

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Member Reviews

I have been very interested in memoirs and biographies of musicians recently, so I was grateful and excited to have been chosen by NetGalley and Laurence King Publishing Ltd to receive a copy of David Bowie, by Robert Dinery. This is a brief overview of Bowie's life and career. It's not at all an in-depth biography. The first half of the book, which I found more interesting is focused on his family life and early music ventures, while the second half is focused on his public life, listing his albums and ventures into acting. It's not the book you want to pick up if you don't know anything about Bowie and want to learn about him as an artist, his life and inspirations. It's a concise run-through of his catalog, with a few tidbits of his private life thrown in. It could definitely be much longer and more complete, but it is a great introduction to an enigmatic talented artist.
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I have always had a casual interest in David Bowie. By no means a super fan, I have been intrigued by tales of gender bending and artistic experimentation, cult classic hits, and of course, whatever went on with Mick Jagger and in later days, Iman. This biography about David Bowie was not written for people like me. 

The writing style of this book was almost frenetic, peppering the reader with references that would likely enthrall someone who has closely followed Bowie’s musical evolution or musicians of a similar zeitgeist. The intermingling and reciprocal influences would likely be fascinating if I knew more about the artists being briefly referenced. Sadly, I was left with more questions than answers. 

To be honest,  I was hoping for deeper explorations into this prolific artist’s evolution through life, including his relationships and his work. I wanted to get a better feeling for Bowie as a human being. Instead, I went on a quick tour of Bowie’s entire song (and acting) catalog with some cursory stories about how each piece came to be. 1 sentence dedicated to a suicide attempt? Passing reference to his child? Listing trysts with various women and men rather than understanding the people involved? Not enough for me. 

This book would be better suited for someone already familiar with the music and entertainment underground of the 60’s and 70’s.  It is written for the reader who is more interested in Bowie’s music than learning about Bowie himself.  But even for that person, this book did not seem to share any deeper insight into the man or his music. While I am grateful to NetGalley, the author, and publisher for early access to this e-galley, it was not a good fit for me. 

The opinions in this review are entirely my own.
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I enjoy reading books about musicians.  I like to know why and how they wrote their songs and if there was a meaning behind it.  I felt this book left me wanting more.  The first half is about David Bowie and how he got started.  It doesn’t delve too deeply into his family relationship.  The second half of the book lists his accomplishments that you can look up yourself.  It was interesting but I wished for more.  Thank you to NetGalley and Laurence Kind Publishing Ltd for the E-ARC.  This is my own opinion.
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David Bowie from Robert Dimery is part of the Lives of the Musicians series, intended to be short but concise biographies of important musicians. Within that context, this book works very well.

If you come to this expecting new and as yet unpublished information, you obviously didn't read what the book was written to accomplish. Not to mention it makes no sense for you to think a short 144 page (body of the book) volume is an in depth groundbreaking work. The issue is not with the book but with the faux outrage of those wanting to display their pseudo credentials as "true" Bowie fans. Save it.

This volume is a very good general biography. It covers his entire life as well as his music. And no, the latter part of the book is not just music reviews, but reading comprehension is a weak point for many, so...  If you know nothing about Bowie other than some of his music, this is a great introduction. Even if you have read most of the books about him, as I and many other people have, this is still a nice quick overview that lets you spend a few hours reliving his life.

I would recommend this to readers who want a short biography of the person to go along with their love of his music. I would also recommend this to those who may well have read many of the critical books about his music or his life but like to have a nice quick read that covers everything without getting into every little piece of minutiae. I might refrain from recommending this to those who are more interested in showing how much they (think) they know, after all, they already know everything.

Reviewed from a copy made available by the publisher via NetGalley.
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A really interesting book. Well worth a read. Wasn’t a fan of David Bowie and chose this book in a whim. So glad I did. It’s worth having a read if this book even if it’s not your genre you won’t be disappointed.
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I have been a fan of David Bowie since I was about 14 when I first heard ‘Scary Monsters’, and loved his originality and ever-changing musical (and fashion) directions, so I was keen to read a new biography of him. I must admit that I enjoyed the first part of the book more than the latter, this might be because it dealt with less well-known periods of his life although I did feel that these episodes could have been discussed in more depth.  But the second part of the book was a real let down for me, offering me nothing new that I could not read in one of the many already published books about Bowie.  Having now looked at the type of books that Dimrey has written before which seem to be mostly ‘list’ type books I am not surprised that I found this to be a little lightweight.
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I am a big Bowie fan and was excited when NetGalley approved giving me an ARC ebook version of this book in exchange for my honest review. While I really enjoyed the first half of the book and learned a few new things, I found the ending to be a bit boring. To me, the end reads more like the author's personal review of Bowie music.  To someone who knows nothing of this artist, this may be beneficial, but most who read this book will be fans with established opinions of Bowie's songs/albums.
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I wouldn't call myself a Bowie fan, but I've enjoyed his music in the past and his ever changing persona was always of interest. I love to read biographies, especially those about musicians so was keen to have a read of this and learn more about Bowie and his music. 

It was an interesting read and certainly seemed comprehensive, but probably more suited towards real fans, than those with just a light interest.
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I’m a music addict and a big Bowie fan. I worked with him in the past, I’m awed by his talent, his charisma, his mystery. That’s why I gave this three stars. Otherwise it would be two. 

One reads a biography to understand a person. To learn the things that can only be uncovered through involvement or deep research. Bowie is a hero in n my mind - I want to know how he is a mere mortal. 

The first half of this book does a decent job of Bowie’s childhood. It is not in depth, bit that’s not what the intention of the book is. That said, I would’ve liked to better understand his relationships with his parents and with Terry, his half brother. 

The second half of the book is unfortunate. It is basically just one record review after another where the author gives his opinion on each song and it’s merit. If I wanted that, I’d read Rolling Stone. 

I didn’t get what I was hoping out of this. Maybe I will just watch a documentary instead. 

#netgalley #bowie
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Am a huge Bowie fan & was excited to be given the opportunity to read this early pre release. Factual, with plenty that I didn't know. So many unseen fantastic photographs of Bowie as we followed him throughout his life from Ziggy Stardust to China girl & his fantastic Black Star album. A stunning treat for any die hard fan of Bowie
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