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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 24 February 2015
I bought this expecting what it says on the cover: "An Anthology of the Best Writing about the Greatest Rock 'n Roll Band in the World". Turns out this "anthology" is actually just a handful of reasonably entertaining articles, whereas the vast majority of it is the author's own reviews of every album, song, musician, producer, engineer, album cover etc. Not necessarily a bad thing, but this is actually a pretty strange one - because Sean Egan doesn't actually appear to like the Stones much at all. I'm all for a neutral and well backed-up review of any piece of work, but I'm still struggling to see which Stones albums Mr Egan actually likes. I might remember this wrong, due to all the general negativity, but my impression of his reviews is that there were a few great tracks, very few decent albums (but there's still always something wrong somewhere), and a whole bunch of crap. So you might think a song like Tumbling Dice is a wonderful, almost perfect piece of music? Not so! Sean Egan knows better than most, and when he says it's mediocre and a poor choice of single, obviously that's correct.

He also gets the various contributors' roles all mixed up, constantly blaming producers or engineers for things they may not have had anything to do with at all. Everything that's wrong (in his opinion) about a mix or master, is all down to the producer (or engineer where the Glimmer Twins produced it themselves, because he clearly doesn't understand what a producer does). The fact that the Stones' producers in most cases have had very little to do with the engineering, and often even less to do with the mixing, is a fact that passes him by. At several points he blatantly states that the producer operates the console, which of course is very often not how it works at all.

Sean Egan is also clearly a mind reader, because he knows exactly why the various band members behaved how they did and how they internally reacted to various situations. With no references whatsoever, he boldly explains what goes on in people's heads, for example Mick's true feelings and expectations around the release of his third solo effort. (not even the best example, just happens to be where I'm up to at the moment).

The strange thing is it's actually pretty well written. The prose does not at all reflect the mediocre and often ridiculous content (in my opinion, I haste to add).
As you can probably guess, this is not a book I would recommend to anyone, except maybe a Stones fan who might just find it quite entertaining for all the wrong reasons, as I did.
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on 1 August 2014
Highly readable and informative history. This will be of interest to anyone with even a casual affinity to Mick & co.

Sean Egan's text dominates, offering in chronological order a history of the band using key album releases as chapter reference points. The additional writings mainly back up what's already been laid out, so are really superfluous e.g. the interview with Keith Richard(s) loses interest well before the end.

There's no starry-eyed view of the band here - if the author thought things sucked, he says so.

Having read the book I am keen to find out more from the Stones, from their recordings and films.

Great stuff.
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on 6 December 2014
Can't get enough of the Stones, and this book is a very well-chosen and illuminating collection, a vital addition to the library of any fan of Mick, Keef and the boys.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on 30 November 2013
Brings together interviews and articles on the band and along with the author's reviews and opinions on all their releases, you get their 50 year up to date history. You can dip into the book at any particular point, but won't want to put it down once you start, even if you've read other books on the Stones or know most of their music. Well worth it for the 500 plus pages.
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on 11 December 2014
An excellent book which just about covers anything that's ever been written about the group. A must for any Rolling Stones fan.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 11 July 2014
The book presents itself as a collection of writing by many different authors, but in fact a good 75% of the book is written by Sean Egan, and the remainder consists of interviews and articles by others. This should have been made clearer.

Having said that, it's a fairly enjoyable read. Egan's chronological history of the band is thorough and contains a few details that were new to me, and his opinions on each record are mildly diverting, even when questionable ('Tumbling Dice' a bad choice of single? Live albums always rubbish?).

Workmanlike, but not outstanding, the book is cheap enough to be worth a punt if you're a Stones fan.
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on 26 July 2015
Excellent seller, highly recommended! A++++
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