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4.5 out of 5 stars54
4.5 out of 5 stars
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on 4 October 2009
I loved the first book - "Anything Goes" - so much that despite my eagerness to read more from the joint pens of John & Carole, I must admit that I was concerned that they had set the bar so high that a second book, following so quickly on it's heels, could not be as good. Thankfully, I was wrong.

Remember the old adverts that used the tag "It does exactly what it says on the tin"?..... well that is most definitely the case with this second book. We were promised "more about the man behind the television sensation" as well as "focusing on John's unique approach to life & love" and "heart-warming family anecdotes" - and that is exactly what this book provides.

I have been fortunate enough to see John entertain us all for 20 years this month - yes I was there when it all began, with the musical from which the title of his first book was taken, and I was there again on 14 September 2009 when John returned to the West End (in La Cage Aux Folles) after far too long a time away, and sang "I Am What I Am" - to not a dry eye in the house, I might add. Reading this book, I can almost hear John's voice in every line - this much-loved & much-loving man has put his heart & soul into this, as he does into everything he puts his hand to. I challenge anyone who reads it to avoid a tear in the eye when John speaks of those he has loved & lost in his life, just as I challenge you to keep a straight face when faced with the heartwarmingly hilarious tales of his home life, that reveal so clearly the deeply abiding love that exists between John & Scott.

This book is meant to be read & read again - I would read it again myself right now, but my 11 year-old has snaffled it & is intent on using it for her next school book report!
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on 6 October 2009
I was intrigued enough by the review/criticism made by 'JB Fan' that I actually physically compared the hardback edition of 'I am What I am' to the hardback of Barrowman's previous book 'Anything Goes'. and guess what, the books basically have the same format; they have the same font sizes, same small chapter lengths (I checked a couple of random chapters in each), and about the same number of total pages in them (exluding end notes). So basically the books are actually the same size!

Conclusion: 'I am What I am' is just as good value for money as the previous book. So if someone reads it quicker then there must be a reason for doing so other that the size of the book!.

Also, regarding the previous reviewer's comments on the 'ballgate' incident. I'm not going to cricise anyone's personal view of this, but, again just to correct a point. In the book Barrowman does not abdicate reponsibility for the incident but takes 'full responsiility' for the 'outrageousness' that 'got out of hand'.

And regarding the other stories in the book, yes I've also heard some of them before, but there were plenty of anactdotes that I'd never heard, some hilarious, some moving.

I agree that the book does read a bit differently from the previous one, it's more a book to 'dip into', and feels more like the reader is sitting down listening to various tales told by around a table or in a living room. It feels much more intimate (perhaps that isn't the right word, maybe 'homely') But from the introduction that seems to be a deliberate intention of the writer. And I think it works very well. Whether it sounds like Carole talking and not John (as the previous reviewer claimed), I have no idea, as I haven't heard enough of Carole to make a judgement!, But I can say that, to me, it definitley reads like it's John's book!

All the above does not mean to say that 'I Am What I Am' is perfect; there is indeed the occassional error, that perhaps should have been rectified by better proof reading prior to publication

But overall I would definitely recommend it to anyone who wants a fun read. It's not great literature but its certainly entertaining enough for the price (at least for me)
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John Barrowman's first book "Anything Goes" was an excellent read and it left me eagerly waiting for his next. I bought "I am what I am" as soon as it came out in paperback and I wasn't disappointed. :-)

His first book told you mainly about his career with stories about his family, partner and friends. This book tells you more about John as a person and how fame has affected him, plus he continues to tell us about what's been happening in his career, more heart warming stories about his family, partner, beloved dogs and friends. John makes no apologies for who is or what he believes in, but why he should?

This book also tells you about his 2009 tour "Music Music Music", his parents also accompanied him on the tour as he loves to have them touring with him if it's possible. I was lucky enough to be in the audience when he did his show at "King Georges Hall" in Blackburn, Lancashire in 2009. He even comments on what a great audience we were and that he'd had a great night, I thought that was a lovely gesture to mention that night, (and we all hope he returns in the future to do another show for us). :-)

Again John is very open and frank in this book; it just shows that he's a fantastic person in everyway. :-)

This is another fabulous, enjoyable, interesting and compulsive read. If you enjoyed his first book I'm sure you'll enjoy this one too. :-)

Personally, I hope John will consider writing another book and if he does I'll be one of the first to buy it. :-)
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on 7 October 2013
This is the 1st time I'v bought a 2nd hand book instead of av'ing it sent to my kindle in my iPad as I wanted too take it places where I did'nt want to take my iPad due to the cost of my when it came I was very impressed with the packaging plus the main thing was the I opened it I was really glad the book looked all most new & looked like only the 1st few pages had been I gave it a good clean with antibacterial wipes it was like a new book.when I'v finished with the book I give them too charity shops so somebody else can enjoy,Thank you
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on 28 March 2010
As with John Barrowman's first book I read this over two days. It is easy to read and flows through from one chapter to the next. His stories are entertaining. His love for his family and partner shine through the pages. There were some recollections that had me crying tears of laughter (try page 27 where he recalls his attempts at entertaining his niece and nephew using a folding bed.... and his brothers understanding of what a brothel is.. priceless). I would highly recommend this book.
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on 2 April 2016
A very interesting gentleman,I have read both his autobiographies,and seen his live performance in Brighton.He is exceptionally talented and knows it,and is in a career where he is all things,singer,actor and now ...writer.A clever man,brave in many ways and fully deserving of his success.
Would love to meet him.It's a very good read by an author who is not afraid to be himself.
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on 22 April 2013
I enjoyed reading about Johns life he comes over as a really freindly guy with no side to him. He envedently has deep love for his family and friends.
It made my laugh at times, I wish hime well for the future and all he does. And bring back Capt. Jack.
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on 15 June 2015
YES!! The best autobiography/biography I have read so far. John's personality comes across well. His obvious love of his family and respect for his fans comes through right the way through the book. He's brill.
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on 18 July 2010
As always John Barrowman is honest and entertaining. An insight into his family life and relationships and covering the more recent years of his career. A good read with fun personal pictures.
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on 20 November 2009
I loved this book! It was a brilliant read, and a real insight into the mischief achieved in the Barrowman-Gill households. The adventures had by all are exciting, enticing, amusing and bountiful. The 'Table Talks' are a unique feature providing highly entertaining anecdotes.

With fun and laughter, tears and joy rolling off each and every page, you will enjoy this book weather you are a fan, curious or have no clue who John Barrowman is!

I would recommend it to all and everyone...
Every bit as good as "Anything Goes: The Autobiography" John's Autobiography.
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