- Audio Download
- Listening Length: 1 hour and 20 minutes
- Program Type: Audiobook
- Version: Unabridged
- Publisher: Audible Studios
- Audible.co.uk Release Date: 15 Jan. 2014
- Language: English
- ASIN: B00HVS1WPG
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank:
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Frank: The True Story that Inspired the Movie Audio Download – Unabridged
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Top Customer Reviews
Ronson’s brief memoir comes out just as a movie version of Frank Sidebottom, starring Michael Fassbender and Maggie Gyllenhaal, is released and recounts the barmy days he was in the band. There isn’t much to this book – Frank was a character Sievey played who revelled in chaotic stage shows and whose success was relatively low (his biggest gig was opening for Bros at Wembley to an audience of 50,000 who booed him as he came out and played terrible renditions of Bros songs).
It’s kinda funny and tragic that there was this Jekyll/Hyde nature to Sievey and that he actually seemed to prefer being Frank to the person he was in real life, and that professionalism was the death of the band – Frank’s improv/freestyle showmanship was what made him stand out, and bringing in actual musicians and rehearsing made him less appealing to audiences. Ronson clearly liked Sievey a lot and his book casts him as crazy and George Bernard Shaw’s Unreasonable Man, but that these were admirable qualities in this unique individual and made him stand out.
Ironically, nearly everyone else in Frank’s periphery became hugely successful – but not Frank. Caroline Aherne, then a secretary at the BBC, played a character in a skit during Frank’s radio show: Mrs Merton. Aherne took the character and developed it into The Mrs Merton Show and the enormously successful follow-up, The Royle Family, making millions and winning numerous awards.Read more ›
It's an enjoyable read but very, very short. As nice as the hardback edition is (about the size of a Ladybird book and with a lovely matt cover) I'm glad I went for the Kindle version because the hardback is very overpriced. I read the book in bed last night while my girlfriend was cleaning her teeth - it's that short, especially when you realise there are also a few pictures in the text too.
The book is more about Ronson than Frank. The early part explains Ronson's student days, squatting in London, then being called upon to play keyboards for Frank one night. A few tales are told of bizarre gigs and rehearsals before Frank's fortunes take a downward turn and the band breaks up. Years later Ronson and Frank are reunited, sadly only a short time before the man beneath the papier mache head succumbed to throat cancer.
It's a short, entertaining read if you were a fan of Frank Sidebottom, but it doesn't really reveal much about Frank or his creator, and instead it is more the story of Jon Ronson's time in Frank's band, an expanded magazine article rather than a book. Enjoyable, but not essential. If you want to know more about Frank Sidebottom the forthcoming Mick Middles book will be a better purchase.
It's just so very very short (about 30 minutes reading time), and what it does say isn't all that illuminating or exciting.
It feels like a preamble from the longer book. But then you find you've got all the way to the end.
A very unsatisfying 30-minute read.
I'm baffled by the positive reviews others have given this.
I think this is the only "book" that i've read from cover to cover in under 40 minutes.
The typeface can be read from the moon, there's scant information in the book, and it's basically a long article. There's next to no "on the road" anecdotes, and Ronson manages to make his time in the band sound like the worlds most boring experience.
The book could of benefited from some editing too. That said, doing so would of made this book the length of a menu.
It's worth a read for 50p on the kindle, sure. Don't buy the book though.
This latest book is about Frank Sidebottom. A wonderfully eccentric part of the British music scene of the late 80s. I own Frank's first ever EP although admittedly it's not something you'd play everyday. Frank however was more than his music and this book captures that time perfectly in Ronson's traditional honest and humorous style.
One thing I would say however is that the book is little more than an extended article. At 60 or so pages with nice big letters and wide spacing you can easily read the book within an hour. At a full retail of £7.99 this is a bit steep..unless you've got your eye on a place in Paris or Milan that is:)
Most Recent Customer Reviews
An absolutely fascinating mini-read by an ex-member of Frank's band. It captures the fall of the band in particular in horribly accessible first-hand detail. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Amazon Customer
NOT the true story that inspired the movie! More of a booklet with pictures which is partly about Frank/Chris and mostly about how long it took to get the film written. Read morePublished 3 months ago by Simpossible
Excellent little book by a great writer. Doesn't take long to read it's about the size of a penguin book. You can't go wrong with anything by Jon Ronson.Published 5 months ago by G. Johnson
I really enjoy reading Jon Ronsons articles, books etc. BUT on this occasion I feel truly ripped off. Read morePublished 5 months ago by Chequers Racers cycling club