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on 12 November 2013
As a long in the tooth Smiths and Morrissey fan I was slightly apprehensive about reading this autobiography of the genius that is Morrissey. I was wrong to be, as the book is a wonderful and beautiful account of the most talented singer/wordsmith that has ever lived. From his childhood days in gloomy Manchester to Hollywood love and sun it never fails to engage and entrall. The saddness felt from the long and unjust courtcase cannot fail to move and fill the reader with anger and bitterness on behalf of the man himself. I am gutted I have read it as I never wanted it to end.
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on 21 February 2014
It's not your typical Autobiography, that should really be expected considering Morrissey is not your typical... person/celebrity/idol. The way he has written it is just so unique to me. The English language is put to good use. I'm not saying its a page turner, cause I do have to put it down after a while, just from exhaustion I think from trying to make sense of the vast amount of words, but for me it's interesting and enjoyable.
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on 27 October 2013
It's worse than that.
Morrissey is a prize Arse.
With no grip on the art of melody or narrative, it seems that all his compositions are a stream of self-conscious, unrelated, bite-size chunks.
If it wasn't for Johnny Marr's rather interesting riffs he'd still be wondering around Manchester's record shops and writing fatuous letters to the NME.
An unpleasant and difficult-to-read book - worse than horribly terrible.
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on 25 March 2015
I like Morrissey but it was a bit hard to get into this book
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on 6 January 2014
I was under no illusion that this was going to be an up beat read by a witty raconteur but this man can both find (and write about) misery in any situation however mundane. The only humour (mentioned by the hordes of journalists who obviously have their heads so far up the author's backside that they cannot see the words on the page) is Morrissey's continuous whinging, surely never his intension?
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on 11 May 2016
Bought as a present arrived in good time receiver delighted
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on 9 February 2014
great read. The opening chapters are written in a different style to the latter ones, what starts as a dictionary finding start is given way to a more simpler flowing style as he whizzes through his memories. No mention of his hospitalization after his Swindon gig which was a bit strange. Worth the money if only for the moors ghost story. Recommended
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on 27 November 2013
I was really excited about getting this but disappointed to find there wasn't that much about his time with the Smiths and their music. The childhood/family parts are interesting but further on Morrissey seems to go on and on about the same person/thing/thought for far too long. Great pictures tucked away in there. Mrs NM
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on 13 August 2014
Bit of a difficult read but will get there in then
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on 13 November 2013
The first half of this book is a lucid trip into the world of a young Steven Patrick Morrissey. Various tales are presented; Morrissey paints a vivid picture of "knife-pluging Manchester" -- seemingly an everyday tomb from which escape is impossible. Moz is at his best when he's describing his schooling, family, musical influences, friends and so on. Flashes of wit and wonderful turns of phrase litter the pages.

His tenure with The Smiths is relegated to a small portion of the book. Very little is said of the dynamic in the band. I think Morrissey writes more lines about the ill-fated inclusion of Gannon than he does about Rourke and Joyce. Pretty much no light is shed on either how the band wrote their music or the interactions between the members.

The book starts an inexorably drift towards mediocrity when petty matters come to the fore. It starts with casual attacks on the head of Rough Trade -- everything is his fault. Some of the criticisms do sound legitimate (the cover art being butchered, lack of availability when it comes to getting singles in shops), but much of it sounds a little too ... convenient. It's a theme that continues right to the end of the book; any chart success is Morrissey's triumph alone, whereas a failure to conquer the charts is viewed as the fault of the record company (or his manager, or whoever else happens to be passing by). Several times Moz complains that it is an injustice that a song failed to chart at number one while writing as if it's the best thing he's ever recorded.

Things get worse when the book deals with the Joyce court case. Much as I can sympathise with Morrisey's treatment in court (assuming his version of events is accurate), his record of events is as repetitious as it is turgid. I lost count of the amount of times Joyce was savaged with the same phrases ("can't remember"). It was a particularly bloody time of his life and the enmity is there for all to see, but it doesn't make for fun or compelling reading, just dreary bleating. Also, for all of Morrissey's criticism of Joyce 'not understanding' the contract, Morrissey cited a similar defence when dealing with terms of contracts he'd personally signed (basically: he was naive and didn't fully understand what he was doing). Morrissey didn't sue the record companies, though, just complained about them instead.

All of this bleating as somewhat reminiscent of Father Ted's Golden Cleric award speech, particularly the barbs he slings at the New York Dolls (who are accused of being surly and ungrateful because He, King Moz, sells more records than they could ever dream about). Maybe they (to use one of his phrases) just Don't Like His Face.

The final stretch was scarcely readable. It features seemingly endless pages about police escorts, massive crowds and unmitigated adulation. I already know about this because I've been to Morrissey gigs. However, there's no need to stretch out the fact that the Crowd Loves Him So and the mainstream media do not understand Him.

If Morrissey had kept some of the pettiness out of the book and not indulged himself so much, it would've been sublime. Instead, it is merely... adequate. Disappointing.
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