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on 2 May 2008
I'm a woman of the 60's and it all rang true. I think we all wanted to be these three women when we were younger, and the stories behind the music, plus the real-life tales of each woman's challanges to free herself from stiffling conventions kept me reading it straight through. The evocation of each woman's personality and her particular challenges was keen - I felt I knew them by the time the book was finished (and could so relate to so much of what they went through). You also got a chance to revisit the times ....How I had forgotten so many details: What we wore, what concerned us, how small a space a young woman had to move around in, how much she had to do on her own. These women's music expressed the exhilleration and the pain of charting a new course, and by the end of the book I wanted to hug them (and listen to their magnificent albums all over -- and over -- again)
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This wonderful book gives us the fascinating and often sad braided biographies of three remarkable artists. Carly, Joni and Carole: Contemporaries and creative 'Sisters'.

The Music Business and all its obstacles are thrown into sharp relief. The chapter on Carly Simon's first months in the studio in the mid-sixties makes disturbing reading. The sexual bylaws Carly would often use to her advantage, she learnt through jarring humiliation. She conquered all this and more, all the while journalising her experiences in her song-writing.

Carole King rivalled Joni Mitchell in her tangled personal life. She showed her naturally compassionate nature - and considerable balls, I think - in accepting her husband Gerry Goffin's adultery and child with another woman into her life, while bringing up their two children and working full-time as a songwriter and musician in New York's legendary Brill Building. Carole would go on to enrapture her fellow singer/songwriters as a resident of Laurel Canyon, California. Her album 'Tapestry' is still a high-watermark of her profession, and still a wonderful album the listener can return to; like the embrace of an old and trusted friend.

As for troubled, feisty, self-absorbed, passionate, ambitious and always confrontational Joni...

Read all about it. Sheila Weller's book is an absorbing, beautifully detailed history of three women, a tumultuous personal history and a powerfully evocation of a heady era. I cannot recommend it enough!
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on 30 April 2016
This is a very fast paced account of a very heady time. The family and musical stories of the three artists are interwoven, often with them sharing partners (most notably James Taylor), at different times. The author makes a very good case for the importance of all 3. but clearly with artistic primacy being given to Joni Mitchell. For what it's worth, I found their likeableness in reverse order to their standing as artists.
At times, and probably naturally, the preferences of the author seep through; in particular she is damning of pretty much all (though, admittedly, not actually ALL) the men that have anything to do with Joni. Carole or Carly. Perhaps they were for the most part a bunch of self serving bastards?!
Overall this book is a very evocative and easy to read account of an important period of social history in which these women, it is argued, contributed greatly to the enhancement of women's independence (from men) by showing, in both their lives and their songs, the different ways in which women can lead a fulfilling life.
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on 15 May 2008
I thoroughly enjoyed this book. Having been a young woman in the '70s and a child in the '60's this graphic account of the developments in the '60's filled in the gaps for me. The three singer/songwriters are described with warmth, generosity and a clarity that captured my imagination and sent me back to their music, I closed the book with a huge respect for their ground breaking work, something I'd previously taken for granted. I think that Sheila Weller has done a brilliant job processing the information she had and analysing it in terms of the period. The only weakness is in some of the writing which descends into the style of a rather unskilled rock journalist. However, this is not always the case and at many points the writing is clear and unpretentious. This book is worth reading for anyone interested in why we, as women, are where we are today and have the freedoms we do.
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on 6 March 2016
I have not finished it and I doubt I will. The language is not appealing and the author seems to not have met any of the subjects in person. I am a fan but I can't be bothered.
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on 26 December 2014
I really loved this book as these three women, especially Joni Mitchell, were my favourite singers when I was a young student and beyond.
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on 25 June 2015
It has fascinating information on each of them and provides a real insight into how they developed their respective talents.
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on 14 November 2014
Full of lots of information....I haven't got through it all yet, but such a well written book
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on 31 October 2014
Already got this and have got it for a friend its fabulous
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on 16 July 2015
Such a good book and in great condition
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