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4.6 out of 5 stars80
4.6 out of 5 stars
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on 23 June 2001
Autobiographies of celebrities can very easily fall into the pit of self praise and name dropping. Cash has none of this. We see a man who is free enough to present himself with all his difficulties, all his struggles. His story appears almost too difficult to tolerate at times, but ultimately there is light and hope, through family, recovery and love. I defy anybody to read it without shedding a tear. When Johnny tells us at the end that life had become "very moving indeed", we feel that we really have seen into the heart of a man who has struggeled, who has come close to the edge, but who has hope to offer. And ultimately it is that hope that shines through. Hope and gratitude. This is a very fine book indeed, not just a chronical of the events of a life, but the story of a soul. Well worth the effort.
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VINE VOICEon 28 October 2003
Indispensible for all Cash fans, this is a wonderfully evocative reflection on his remarkable career. Unconventional, as you'd expect of the man - rather than a straightforward narrative, he explores his life through a series of reflective impressions, and non-linear tales crossing the years.
What we are left with is a deeply moving, even inspiring, portrait of this humble, uniquely gifted artist. A fine memorial to a great musician and wonderful human being.
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on 18 June 1999
This book is an inspiration and it reads like a prayer for mankind, for Johnny Cash and for music. The prose washed over me and made me feel so calm and peaceful. He never has a bad word to say about anybody (which admittedly can get a bit tiresome at points) and every negative in his life is turned round into a positive. It moves at a loving conversational pace and has great humour and wit as well as touching insights. It is impossible to read without feeling great respect for JC as a man, a musician and as a spiritual being. In short, it has soul.
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on 20 March 2007
I read this book on holiday last week and thought it was great. It was a truthful, thought provoking book by someone who is not a professional author but gave it a jolly good shot. His stories of drug addiction and the destruction it causes seemed very real, as did his genuine love for June.

I really enjoyed this book and having read about 20 autobiographies, will be reading this one again definately.
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on 1 June 2014
This book was written with great honesty and emotion. It is a reavealing read, especially with respect to the inner feelings and motivations of the man himself. It is, however, a pretty mixed read and I expect you would really have to be a big fan to read it with an uncritical eye. There is a lot of religion in the mix, which is okay if you are a Christian, but tedious for a reader of differing, or no religious interest. There is also a very large overall percentage of the book that virtually lists all of the people he admired, was influenced by, needed to thank, or apologise to, were members of his family, or just got a mention. If you are not a big Country/Gospel fan then you'll find all that a bit tedious too.
On the positive side, there is some beautiful prose and some tear-jerking moments. He deals with his adiction problems in a very open manner and there is some good anecdotal material.
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on 14 February 2006
It's not usual that a biography of a musician is written by the actual person, which makes this book by Cash all the more poignant, especially since his death.
It's a riveting read that really puts you into the mind of the legend himself. You can really understand the man and what makes him tick by reading this book.
But because it writes about his thinking, the book can waffle on a bit. Cash sometimes gets sidetracked in his writing, goes off on a tangent before coming back to the previous story, and when the incidents take place is not always clear at what point of his life they took place.
But overlook that, and instead, this is a great book with plenty of stories - sad, funny, life affirming, Cash has plenty to say, opinions to reveal and tales to tell.
You won't get bored once, and he had a fascinating life. The fact that he had plans for his future, that he never got around to doing, make this book incredibly personal and nostalgic.
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This is one of the most enjoyable autobiographies I've ever read, and I've read a lot. Johnny Cash's style is very conversational and you really feel as if he is talking just to you as you read. He lets you into some really personal moments in his life that you don't tend to see in others biogs (such as his personal prayers and meditations), as well as describing his friendships, growing up and various addictions. You really get a feel for the man from this book and it comes highly recommended.

Feel free to check out my blog which can be found on my profile page.
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on 11 July 2014
This is the story of Johnny Cash as you’ve never heard it before, the story of the man in black from his own lips – it turns out that Cash isn’t just a songwriter, he’s an accomplished novelist and autobiographer in his own right, and this is his second book of autobiographical stories, a fascinating insight in to his mind.

This isn’t an autobiography in the traditional sense of the word – it’s not really linear, and it really is more like a set of stories told around a campfire than the detailed life story of a man who knew he hadn’t got long left. By the end, you’ll feel as though J.R. is a close friend, rather than the mysterious Cash who performed on stages at San Quentin and Folsom Prison.

It’s fascinating, too, to hear his tales of the superstars that he met and conversed with, figures as notable and diverse as Elvis Presley and Richard Nixon, Roy Orbison and Bob Dylan, Bill Clinton and George Bush. Hell, president Jimmy Carter was even a cousin of his, a direct blood relative of June Carter, Johnny’s loving wife and a talented performer in her own right.

The book is offset beautifully by black and white photographs from Johnny’s own collection, and they really help to bring his story to life – at the end of the day, Cash was a fundamentally likeable person, even if he does talk about religion a little too much for my liking. But that’s just the man he was, he pulled no punches and was just himself, unashamedly, throughout his career.

If you’re a particular fan of Johnny Cash and country music, or if you’re simply a fan of music in general, this is the book for you – it’s one of the most interesting autobiographies I’ve ever read, and I’ve read a lot of autobiographies. Keep on walking that line, kid.
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on 27 May 2010
After watching Walk the line a couple of times I decided I wanted to know more about the man. It is a really personal and well written account of himself and I would reccomend anyone interested in learning more to buy it
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on 12 October 2006
Having only been fully introduced to the musical genius of Johnny Cash since his death, I was eager to explore the man in more depth.

This autobiography is more than I could have hoped for. Containing tales of hope, struggle, ambition, self-destruction and redemption, Cash articulates his life reflectively, revealing his opinions and beliefs in a prose that ties the present to the past. He talks fondly of family and colleagues, presenting a humility and honesty that resonates to the reader.

In particular, I found the stories of Cash's drug addiction intriguing, dark and astonishing at the same time. The drug-induced incidents he describes are articulated with amazing clarity...sometimes in direct contrast to events which can be considered non-essential to the overall picture.

By the end of the book, my impression of Cash is of someone who has found contentment in religion and family, and is riding the wave of new-found popularity in his career. The gratitude Cash feels for this contentment is clear, and ultimately provides the book with a humility characteristic of the man.
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