Top positive review
32 people found this helpful
Interesting. Compassionate, but doesn't sanitise subject
on 21 April 1999
This is the only biography of Freddie Mercury I have read so I'm not an authority. However - I do have a deep-rooted interest so here goes. I felt that the author was really interested in her subject and had definitely done a good deal of research. I am pleased that she doesn't try and present him as an angel (which he clearly wasn't, bless him) and some less flattering anecdotes are included as pointers to show the reader what a pain in the neck he could be when he chose. At the same time, some quite endearing memories balance this up - and if you liked the man to start with then you'll definitely still like him when you've finished the book. I think really it could have benefitted from some better photographs as these are an odd collection, some from childhood, including some old-looking photos of the area where he was born in Zanzibar, and these to my mind are not particularly interesting. The slant of the book is, I believe, that of finding out who Freddie really was by means of charting his course through life - so I suppose these are relevant - but perhaps not very exciting if it was the outrageous banana-on-head wearing, leather-clad party animal image that had prompted you to buy the book. However, with regard to the narrative, she has a nice style, and is at no time is waspish or accusatory. She deals particularly well with an interview with Barbara Valentin, one of Freddie's closest friends. All in all, one of my favourites and a pretty good read.