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Rotten: No Irish, No Blacks, No Dogs Paperback – Illustrated, 27 Jun 2016

4.2 out of 5 stars 53 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Plexus Publishing Ltd; New Ed edition (27 Jun. 2016)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0859653412
  • ISBN-13: 978-0859653411
  • Product Dimensions: 23.2 x 2.5 x 23.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (53 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 105,137 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

'Rotten... captures the rancid flavour of Lydon's punk and pre-punk life... a good read' --The Guardian, January 31, 2004

‘Lydon’s story is one of struggle and an almost foolhardy courage... for sheer eye-of-the-storm authenticity, this is hard to beat.' --Kerrang!, January 24, 2004

‘This autobiography remains – ten years since it was first written – a nihilistic, gross-out masterpiece.’ --NME, January 24, 2004

About the Author

John Lydon still performs and tours with the Sex Pistols. He also records and performs both as a solo artist and with PiL (Public Image Limited). He lives in California.


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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
Last time I checked, this was out of print, so discussing Lydon and his amusing appearance on TV's I'm a Celebrity, Get Me Out of Here! I found it has been reissued. Rotten: No Irish, No Blacks, No Dogs is Lydon's first memoir, generally centred around his perception of life in the Sex Pistols (though he does offer other people's views); he is due to publish a second book, on his superior act after, Public Image Limited, which after reading this several times, is something I'm looking forward to...
Lydon has always been great with words, something you can't doubt from the lyrics to debut Anarchy in the UK alone; his lines at the notious winterland concert ("ever felt you've been cheated?") are typical of him. Whichever way you cut it, Lydon is one of the great English characters- he's up there with William Blake, Anthony Burgess, Graham Greene, Morrissey, Tony Hancock, Sid James, Pete Townshend, Virginia Woolf- a typically individual English voice...
No Irish No Blacks No Dogs probably tells it like it is, though of course we all have our own perspectives on experiences- Lydon discusses The Sex Pistols, the split after and of course Malcolm McLaren. Key events are seen from Lydon's POV, though perhaps the brilliant documentary The Filth&The Fury has surplanted that- I loved the scene from The Filth where the Sex Pistols played a Xmas party for striking miner's kids and a kid chucked a pie or cake in Lydon's face. This is why it seems perfectly natural he's on I'm a Celebrity!. Lydon makes lots of amusing bitchy comments about other people, from Shane MaGowan to Joe Strummer, and shows that he has remained an individual.
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Format: Paperback
Unfortunately, with all of the hype concerning the infamous Sex Pistols, their rapid rise and just as rapid decline and break-up, people have a tendency to forgot about the people involved in the band. Although Johnny Rotten is probably the most well-known member of the Pistols (I say probably because Sid Vicious is, quite possibly, more well-known), he is often seen as little more than a "punk rock" icon. In this book, he sets it straight, as he sees it. It is an incredibly good read, and Lydon (his real last name) is brutally honest about his home life, his childhood, his inclusion into the Pistols and the breakup and demise of the Pistols. The book is, at times, depressing, touching and upsetting, but it is always entertaining and, surprisingly, incredibly funny. Lydon is a very witty guy, and he holds nothing back in this autobio. Definately recommend for anyone interested in the man, the Pistols or punk in general.
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Format: Paperback
John Lydon writes the way EVERY writer should write - clearly and concisely. Indeed, I would say that this is the best autobiography I have EVER read.

What immediately strikes the reader is John's wit. He is simply one of the most irreverant, unconvential, funny men I have ever discovered. Whether describing the pitiful Malcom McLaren or his Grandfather's genitalia, I was literally roaring with laughter at most of the sentences here. He is as sharp as a razor and just as deadly. If he encounters anyone in the slightest way stupid, contrived or dull, he will reduce them to the size of a pin-head in a matter of seconds. Everyone should be like John Lydon! (If everyone were like John Lydon, life might actually be a little more interesting.)

He has also invited various other people woven into his life story to write passages for this book - helpful when trying to get an accurate picture of the punk story and it's aftermath. It is actually a very interesting technique, asking other people to contribute passages for an autobiography, but an effective one, as it enables the reader to get an ENTIRE picture, rather than something one-sided. Also, it is a technique which few, if any other writers have used, but that is the essence of John Lydon - always breaking boundaries, defying expectations and conventions, always being challenging. He is nothing short of a genius.

For a man who has fronted two of the best bands ever, (Sex Pistols and Public Image Limited), he is surprisingly down-to-earth. Indeed, most people in his position disappeared up their own backsides years ago - but this is not so with Lydon. For all his money, success, and fame, he speaks with a fiercely honest, working-class tongue. How utterly refreshing!
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I started writing a crit of this then managed to blow it all away somehow. Silly me - so this will be short and sweet.

The main problem here is that JL whilst being the most intelligent of the Pistols and probably of the punk movement in general right from it's start before it was even termed 'punk', is at the same time completely disingenuous and somewhat 'liberal with the veracite'. It's also ghostwritten. He should take the time to write it himself.

Its still a decent document of the period but it is quite sinful that a book like this, published in 2003, is out of print in the UK in 2014. It could do with updating to post-PiL stuff in a re-published new edition.

And its worth leaving with a quote

"All I offer to others is their own individuality. Grab it! The rave crowd call it freedom. They pay a fortune for the drugs to maintain this idiocy, and it's all manipulated by seriously bad promoters and evil-minded deejays. It's hypnotic, trance-like. It's enjoyable but not the be-all, end-all. Unfortunately the kids will come out the end very frustrated."

I still like him - the loveable young / old rogue!
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