James Patterson: The Stories of My Life
by James Patterson
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Pub Date 9 Jun 2022 | Archive Date 9 Jun 2022
Random House UK, Cornerstone, Century
How did a boy from small-town New York become one of the world's most successful writers?
· On the morning he was born, he nearly died.
· Growing up, he didn't love to read. That changed.
· He worked at a mental hospital in Massachusetts, where he met the singer James Taylor and the poet Robert Lowell.
· While he toiled in advertising hell, James wrote the ad jingle line "I'm a Toys 'R' Us Kid."
· He once watched James Baldwin and Norman Mailer square off to trade punches at a party.
· He's only been in love twice. Both times are amazing.
· Dolly Parton once sang "Happy Birthday" to James over the phone. She calls him J.J., for Jimmy James.
· Three American presidents have invited him to golf with them.
These are the stories of James Patterson's life: the most anticipated memoir of 2022.
'The master storyteller of our times takes us on a funny, poignant, and ultimately triumphant journey' HILLARY RODHAM CLINTON
'The whole story of his truly astonishing life' BOB WOODWARD
'The book was damn near addictive. I loved it' RON HOWARD
'I love the pithy, bright anecdotes, and at times his poignant narrative will bring you to tears' PATRICIA CORNWELL
'Will delight fans, and even non-fans, of America's storied storyteller' BEN BRADLEE JR.
'James Patterson's first rule of storytelling is 'be there.' And that's the genius of his autobiography' MIKE LUPICA
'Jim Patterson's life is a thriller itself . . . This book is a pure joy to read' STEPHEN A. SCHWARZMAN
'Always entertaining . . . You will enjoy the read' PHIL KNIGHT
Available on NetGalley
Average rating from 51 members
Interesting reading, once I started I didn't want to put it down.
I've read many of James Patterson books over the years, and like those JP's stories did not disappoint. Made all the more interesting when you knew which novels he was referring to (although reading them before not essential to reading this book, may draw you in to his long list of books, also noted at the back). Definite should read.
I've read many books by James Patterson over the years and thought his autobiography or memoir would be fascinating. It is, but I also thought it was a little bit short. It's written in his usual style of short paragraphs which appear almost to be spoken. I really enjoy this style in his novels as you can fit in a chapter here and there even if you're short of time. But I think it works less well in a memoir - I wanted more detail!
The whole book is interesting. I had no idea about his early years or the fact that he originally worked in marketing. But what I liked best were all the pieces about reading and writing. He explains his process and format and how he collaborates with other authors. He talks throughout about the importance of reading and his frustration about poor literacy levels in the USA. My most favourite chapter of all is one where he lists the books which have been most important to him (I love this) and he sums it up by saying:
'...I read alot, and I really like books. But especially the ones that are dog-eared, beat-up and look well loved and well read.'
I couldn't agree more and how wonderful to perceive a writer as a reader - to me this is something which many people keep private and do not share.
Highly recommended. I wish it was longer - I am sure there was more to say on all the good charity work and work to encourage children's literacy that he has done over the years both at home and internationally.
Thank you to NetGalley for an early copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
When this author has been one of your all time favorite authors for so so many years, it's really exciting when you see he has book about him, and his journey,
My love of reading has been going for many years and this is an author i've enjoyed following, The murder Club series, Alex Cross series, and many more have been among some of the best books i've read. It actually felt like an honour to be able to read this book.
As a huge fan of the author I was delighted to receive a copy of this book to read. I thought I knew a little about the man behind Alex Cross but I had no idea how little I did actually know.
This is a book which jumps from one story to another, with the typical short chapters fans have come to expect from the author. One of these stories actually explains why he chose to stick to this format in his books. The stories take us behind the scenes of his life from school to working at an advertising agency and beyond. The list of famous faces he has met over the years gets longer the further into the book you go. Such an impressive list I can tell you.
My heart broke for the author on reading one particular story. I won’t say anything more as I don’t want to spoil it for others. Suffice to say this is a man who has experienced loss.
I was so engrossed in this book that I read it in one sitting.
Huge thanks go to the publisher and Netgalley for providing a copy. Thanks also to the author for allowing us an insight into his life so far.
I am a massive of James Patterson and this read was amazing. I enjoyed it very much and like the fact he mentions books and titles and I have read most of them. If your a fan then this is a must for you. .
What I love about this is that it’s an autobiography so we finally get a book just in James Pattersons’s words again!
I was 12 when I started reading JP books, my aunty gave me a couple & then I went and borrowed the others from the library - it was circa 1997 so we were still early in the Alex Cross series and I was fully invested in his characters.
JP must be lauded as not only a successful writer, but also an internationally recognised brand. In a similar way that Henry Winkler knows the value of writing for reluctant readers, JP is too and that shines through in the way he talks about writing for other people. I didn’t know anything about his life, so each little revelation was interesting and made me realise how he could take things from the mundane to the mysterious and create a bestseller.
This is sure to be a hit and I can’t wait to buy a copy for my aunt!
Just finished this fabulous autobiography on the fantastic author James Patterson. It was an eye opening read so much interesting facts and details about his life and of course his books. Even shed a tear at one part of the book. Overall a fabulous book and I fully recommend it!
James Patterson’s The Stories of My Life is just that, countless snippets and thoughts that James has kindly shared with us. I am sure there are many many more stories, but I definitely don’t think more could have fitted in the book.
At one point I thought to myself that the snippets were too short, and sometimes too scattered, but reflecting back on the book it really worked well. We get a brilliant insight into James Patterson, his influences, his career, and his life as a whole. And wow has he had some incredible experiences. A real testament to living with an open mind. And through it all he (seems) to have remained kind, caring and humble.
The below quote is so fitting;
“I look at myself as just another idiot wandering planet Earth with no real idea what makes the world go round, no particular identity, just another lost soul”
Thanks James for saving lives (whilst still writing with a pencil).
James Patterson is such a legend. It was so interesting reading abt the man behind all these amazing stories.
I could not wait to read this as been following JP for years and have pretty much read everything he’s released. A wonderful insight into the life of one of the best authors ever and told in a way that just makes you want to read page after page. Loved it and would totally recommend to anyone who wants a peak into the life of the one and only James Patterson.
I've been a fan of James Patterson novels for a number of years so it was really intriguing when the author announced he was releasing a story of his own life.
I do enjoy autobiographies so this was definitely one I was interested to read.
Thank you to the publishers and netgalley for allowing an ARC of this book.
It was a gripping read, but from James Patterson I have come to find that all of his books are highly enjoyable and satisfying.
If you enjoy his work then this one is definitely recommended to be added to your book pile.
Many thanks to both NetGalley and to Random House UK for letting me see an advance reader's copy of The Stories of my Life.
From the moment I knew that this book was coming out, I wanted it. Therefore, I was delighted when I was approved to write a review.
The Stories of My Life by James Patterson is exactly that, filled with what appears to be lots of little anecdotes about, well, his life. I can imagine them being spoken during an after dinner speech, and it also appears that that's where many of the stories originated: from speaking events.
The best bits for me were the ones about Patterson's writing process. He's one of the most prolific writers in the world and I was interested to see how he does it.
I'd also heard rumours that he wasn't writing his own stories any more, and that did put me off reading him for a while. I was very happy to be corrected on this in that the books with only his name on the front are, in fact, written by him. Any others are co-written rather than ghostwritten and, hence, the co-writers also get a credit on the cover.
The copy I received was a scrappy, unedited draft and there were text dumps in various places, either copied and pasted in error, or the typist forgot to go back and cut out the extra, unwanted bits. This interfered with the reading for me, but I pressed on to the end regardless.
I would have liked to have known more about Patterson's writing process, such as how many drafts does he write before the typist takes over, and then how many revisions. I also would have liked to know where the ideas come from before they land in his ideas file. It could also have been much longer for me.
However, I did enjoy it and I'm glad I read it. Every writer, or reader of James Patterson, would enjoy this book, I think.
Loved reading about Mr Patterson himself!
Felt like I was in a room having a conversation with him.
Loved the references to his novels.
Keep at it Mr P.
I have been reading James Patterson books for as long as I can remember. In fact, his Alex Cross books are some of the first grown up books that I remember reading. Needless to say, I am a big fan and I urge every crime book lover to read his books. When I heard that this book was coming out I just had to read it. It is always fascinating to learn more about the people that you admire, and James has had a very interesting life.
This is a book of stories, in not particular order really. He jumps around his life, telling stories of what he has done, people he has met and how he became the world best selling writer. I enjoyed reading about his time as an advertising executive, his school days, his experience at Woodstock and his lack of confidence at becoming a fiction writer. He talks about his friendship with former President, Bill Clinton and their writing collaboration. It was written in his usual conversational style, with short chapters which makes it a very fast read - just like his fiction novels.
I look forward to my physical copy arriving so that I can see the photos to go along with the stories.
This is a must read for fans of the great man's books. Absolutely recommend. All the stars
Thanks to Random House UK and Netgalley for my advanced copy of this book to read..
It's nice to read autobiographies by well known authors as they are bound to be well written. I found James Patterson's highly engrossing. A lot of humor, a lot of name dropping and a lot of questions answered (especially how he co-writes)! It's sweet that he seems so eager to show himself as a good, humble, likable personality with lots of friends. Something rare for a celebrity who rubs shoulders with Presidents and other celebrities, I suppose!
Definitely a must-read for writers and die hard fans of the author's! Must-buy for public libraries.
5 stars from me, for all the chuckles!
Not the usual memoir; a scattergun of anecdotes about his life. The title is very apt. I enjoyed reading about his early life, how he became a writer, all done in a conversational style as if he is chatting to you personally. I was also pleased to read about his collaborations with other authors and discover he has a great deal of input, rather than as many think, are being ghost written. Nice short anecdotes, but as with his books, they keep you reading and are pithy, insightful and sometimes poignant. I also admire him for his literacy work with children which he is passionate about. He comes across as a genuinely likable guy, totally invested in writing. Very readable and recommended.
Thanks to Cornerstone, Random House UK and NetGalley for an ARC in return for an honest opinion.
Another fabulous read by this author, with a insight to his life such a fabulous author would recommend to anyone who likes thriller books he never disappoints his readers.
Anyone who's a Patterson fan (and maybe those who aren't) will enjoy reading this book. It's written from the heart and you get a real insight into the man behind the stories.
I had no idea what to expect when I requested this story. Over the years I’ve read quite a few books by the author so this story is definitely something that I couldn’t miss. And not any other reader should.
It’s so interesting to see how his life shaped everything along the way in his career and the characters that he met along the way left their mark as well.
I would recommend this book to anyone, whether you’ve read his books or not, it’s one of those that will stay with you forever
Very grateful to the publisher for my review copy
would like to thank netgalley and the publisher for letting me read this quirky book
i say quirky as its a collection of stories of james pattersons life, and at times i laughed out loud and other times i agreed with him
it was lovely to find out how it all started and now i understand how he has a book out nearly every 3 months he writes everyday....
but its his love of reading that comes across and how he is trying to encourage it for everyone....
its a great read and i thoroughly enjoyed the quirkiness of this book
looking forward to my next james patterson book
I read a lot of James Patterson's books but I didn't know a lot about him. This was a gripping and interesting read.
He's a master storyteller and this is another great book.
Many thanks to the publisher and Netgalley for this ARC, all opinions are mine
Quick, easy read. It was quite entertaining with lots of humorous stories of his life and career. A born story teller.
## The Stories of my Life by James Patterson
As the title suggests this is the story of one of the most productive writers of our age. It pulls you in immediately. Although I have read several of his novels I knew nothing about the man himself, apart from the fact that he is prolific.
It's quite refreshing to read an autobiography that highlights failures as well as successes. The book has lots of short scenes, which I like, but may not appeal to everyone. By short I mean a page and a half and it does flit about a bit.
He relates his life story as though you, the reader, are a friend with whom he is having a conversation. It works very well and being in an interesting conversation you want more.
It's a well-written story, as you would expect from a writer of his calibre.
One thing that stuck with me as I read it was that he, even to this day, writes with a pencil. I find that unusual but most of his story is quite unusual too, so why not?
My thanks to #NetGalley, #JamesPatterson, and #RandomHouseUK for this free ARC in exchange for an honest review.
An fascinating insight into an author's life. James Patterson's memoir is written in the same style to his books, with short, snappy paragraphs. Interesting to read about his early years in marketing, but my favourite part was how he explains the process of writing. His love of books shines through, whether he's discussing enjoying other authors' work or his concern about low literacy levels in the US. You don't think about authors having time to read books themselves. I've only read one James Patterson novel so far so I'll be diving into my husband's collection now!
I love reading books by James Patterson so this book made me excited. To find out about his personal history and the route in to full time author. His chatty style and short chapters are his trademark style of writing that makes you feel as if you are having a conversation with the man himself.
Interesting and fascinating tale of determination and resilience.
Agree with the sentiment that we need to get youngsters reading and it can open up the world to them, even if it's to escape their reality
I haven't read a James Patterson book for several years but always aenjoyed them and I do love memoir and autobiographies. So this one was a must read for me. It's full of short choppy chapters, just like his novels. Full of fascinating information about his life from boyhood onwards and plenty of recognisable names threaded through the stoties too. He's certainly led an interesting life and the book read just as if you met him for a coffee and he told you another story.. Highly recommended. With thanks to NetGalley, the oublishers and the author for the opportunity to read and review an e-ARC of this title.
James Patterson: The stories of my life by James Patterson
Thank you. I Absolutely loved it! The humour and the background stories were amazing. (I too am a fan of Jonathan Kellerman and just as likeable as a writer his wife Faye Kellerman and I have tons of both of their books!)
I now have a short list and a long list of James Patterson books I NEED to read. 😀
Wow I loved this book. If you are a fan of James Patterson and want to know more about the man and the myth then this is the book for you. This is written in a collection of short chapters about his life and travels but feels like you are sat having a conversation with a friend and is a fascinating read.
An excellent book by an excellent storyteller, giving an insight into his method and his psyche. This isn’t a chronological book with his life laid out logically. It is little stories, little vignettes which stand alone. It is strong because of that and very entertaining. He has certainly had an interesting life.
I loved the story about the woman on the plane who mentioned Mr Patterson’s appearance on Castle and I’m jealous of his relationship with Dolly Parton - an amazing woman.
A great book if you're a fan of Janes Patterson’s books as many of them are mentioned here. It’s also a clever way to share details of a life well lived.
I was given a copy of this book by Netgalley
James Patterson: The Stories of My Life by James Patterson is an extremely interesting and entertaining read. I enjoyed reading about his childhood and his advertising career. He came across as someone who is thankful for his writing career and his marriage to his wife, Sue and his love for his son.
I appreciated his story and his storytelling and enjoyed reading his autobiography.
A book about James Patterson - by James Patterson.... yes please!!
I loved how it was written in his well known and loved short paragraphs and loved getting an insight on the man behind so many incredible books. And what a man, so many anecdotes from his life, some humorous some serious but all giving us an insight into himself. I loved reading it.
With thanks to the author, publishers Random House UK, and NetGalley for a digital ARC in exchange for my honest and unbiased review.
I seem to be firmly in the minority in that I have never read a James Patterson book before! I’m not sure how that has transpired when he writes primarily in the crime/mystery genre, which is one of my favourites, but there you have it, The short and snappy chapter approach of the author was therefore a new experience for me, albeit one that I felt worked well in the context of this autobiography, where the random nature of the chapter topics made it an ideal book to dip in and out of while taking a break from reading other fictional works.
The author has certainly led an interesting life, based on the different careers he has had and the people, famous and otherwise, that he has crossed paths with along the way. He has also had his fair share of tragedy to deal with, but this, along with his middle-class upbringing and lack of pretension, makes him a likeable character that most people will be able to easily relate to.
One criticism would be that I would have hoped for a little more insight into the authors writing process, and a little less of the name-dropping which seemed to permeate this book, sometimes for no apparent reason other than to mention them. But perhaps that wasn’t the intention for this book.
Overall an enjoyable read though. Now I’m off to find out who the hell Alex Cross is!
As a James Patterson fan, this book has been a long time in the making. One of the most prolific writers of our time, I have read all of his books and was even lucky to meet him when he came to Australia for a Q&A a few years ago.
Meeting him afterwards at the book signing, I had in my head some intelligent questions to ask him, but when it came to my turn, I blurted out ”Please don’t kill Nana Mama!” Readers of the Alex Cross series will be able to resonate with this. I was so embarrassed and wanted to hide but he was very gracious and laughed.
In this memoir, Patterson gives the reader an inside look into a interesting and fascinating life. In no order we are told through wonderful storytelling from his childhood, to altar boy, to gaining a scholarship to Vanderbilt, to working in a mental institution, to a CEO at an advertising agency before becoming a full time author. WOW! He has done it all.
What I found most interesting was he never liked reading as a kid especially as he is such a big advocate for it now. There is nothing wrong with that in the least, but it’s rare when reading a memoir from an author that reading wasn’t in their blood from a child. I enjoyed reading about the process of his collaborations with other authors, for which he has copped a lot of unwarranted criticism (unwarranted in my opinion)
All round I found Patterson’s memoir a very entertaining and enjoyable read. Told through his signature short sharp chapters, if you a fan of his work,I highly recommend you reading this especially the audiobook which is narrated by the man himself.
Thank you to James Patterson, Random House and NetGalley for allowing me to read an advance copy of The Stories of My Life, which I have reviewed honestly and voluntarily.
A collection of anecdotes from his life’s journey illustrating his experience of rising from a small-town nonentity to the CEO of a national advertising agency and then to achieve an outstanding position as a world-famous author consorting with US Presidents and the like; relating what sucks. to avoid, and who are Jerks, to be aware of along the way. Observing that to live a successful and fulfilling life is like juggling 5 balls with only a specific one that one could drop and recover.. What the balls represent and what is the specific one that is recoverable and why, well the book will need to be read to find out..
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