2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
More than just morbid speculation,
This review is from: Richard (Paperback)
When I picked this book up initially the temptation was to put it straight back down again because of an uncomfortable sense of morbid voyeurism that comes from speculating about the disappearance of a public figure. The book is a million miles away from the negative, gossip celebrity culture you find in magazines, though. In the end I gave it the benefit of the doubt and was justified as I read Myer's sensitive and insightful account of Richey Edwards' struggles with fame and his own demons.
Written from Richey's point of view, alternating between the start of the Manics rise to fame and the period immediately before his disappearance, the book gives an insight into a troubled mind. The author is quick to point out that this insight is purely fictional but nevertheless it is haunting and beautiful, seeming real enough. The quotes and references to songs and books are inspiring and give you a sense of Richey's artistic vision - although the book is very upfront about his disregard for playing the guitar.
I'm not a particular fan of the Manic Street Preachers and was nine when Richie disappeared so had no prior knowledge. The facts are really a secondary consideration so it probably isn't the right book if you're after solid information - the focus really is on Richey's state of mind and it is an emotional account. It's an interesting read whether you are a fan or not and there is something universal about it as a record of a troubled mind. There are certain scenes and passages that cut through - heartbreaking moments where the band or Richey's family are involved - that are truly haunting and, although I don't often say this, the book made me think a little more about my life.