Official Synopsis from Goodreads: Everyone knows Daisy Jones & The Six, but nobody knows the reason behind their split at the absolute height of their popularity . . . 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 and 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.
Genre: Historical Fiction, Fiction
Setting: 1965-1979, mainly Los Angeles
My copy came from: I purchased this book at my local bookstore, Copperfield’s.
*** this post contains affiliate links ***
Review: Raw and riveting. Daisy Jones & The Six by Taylor Jenkins Reid is a book about sex, drugs, and rock & roll. Along with all of that, we also get some very true, emotional scenes, and one heck of a strong female character!
We love broken, beautiful people. And it doesn’t get much more obviously broken and more classically beautiful than Daisy Jones.
Told by way of oral history, reading this book felt like I was watching a documentary about a 70s rock band. For example, the book is written with a character’s name written down, like Daisy, then has several lines of Daisy talking, and then cuts to the next character’s voice, like Billy. With having almost zero description of setting and various narrative details, it really makes the book fly by. There weren’t pages or paragraphs of descriptive text to weed through, just people’s memories of what happened. While I did enjoy the way this story was told, I did feel mentally tired by the format when I finished, and was eager to pick up a standard narrative after finishing this. Some readers may find this particular style off-putting, or difficult. I think it suited this particular story well, due to the nature of it being about a rock band and wanting everyone’s opinions and the real story behind the band’s breakup.
DAISY: I didn’t know why he insisted on rejecting me time and again.
BILLY: When someone’s presence gives you energy, when it riles up something in you—the way Daisy did for me—you can turn that energy into lust or love or hate.
I felt most comfortable hating her. It was my only choice.
This is the second Taylor Jenkins Reid book that I’ve read and reviewed, and just like with The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo, the characters really shine here. You’ve got the struggling addict Billy, the wildly popular and uncontrollable Daisy, Billy’s steadfast and caring brother Graham, the aloof and lonely Karen, and my favorite character, Billy’s wife, the strong and loving Camila. I went into this read thinking it was going to be a romance between Billy and Daisy, and that isn’t quite the truth. The true star of this book is Billy’s wife, Camila, and how she fights for Billy and their family.
CAMILA: You’re asking me if I knew he was going to be unfaithful as if that’s a thing that you know or you don’t know. Like it’s black and white. But it’s not. You suspect, then you sort of un-suspect. Then you suspect again. Then you tell yourself you’re crazy. Then you ask yourself whether fidelity is really something you value above all else.
Let me put it this way: I’ve seen a lot of marriages where everyone is faithful and no one is happy.
As a content warning, there are a lot of mentions about various drugs and usage of drugs, so if that type of stuff bothers you, it might be better if you skipped this read. You can’t just skim past a few mentions – it is everywhere in this book!
There is a lot of music mentioned in this read, and at the end of the book the lyrics of the mentioned songs are written out. This was nice, as I kept wondering about the lyrics of the songs that Daisy and Billy wrote.
GRAHAM: I just thought he was freaking out because he wasn’t the star of the album anymore. I mean, I knew things between Billy and Daisy were dicey. But back then I thought music was just about music.
But music is never about music. If it was, we’d be writing songs about guitars. But we don’t. We write songs about women.
Women will crush you, you know? I suppose everybody hurts everybody, but women always seem to get back up, you ever notice that? Women are always still standing.
There’s a reason this book has been so popular, and that is because the characters really just leap right off the page. There’s a compelling story here, with characters that demand attention, and I cannot wait for the Amazon miniseries that Reese Witherspoon is working on. I am looking forward to seeing the band come together and listening to their iconic music.
Bottom Line: Sex, drugs, rock & roll, and some unforgettable characters.
LINKS ***the Amazon link is an affiliate link which means I receive a small commission if you click the link and make a purchase***