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on 28 May 2017
Whilst celebrity biogs are ten-a-penny, this is different. It's not just the standard format of childhood, school, fame; the events portrayed are overshadowed by the mental health problems that have famously plagued this artiste throughout his adult life. This can at times make this a difficult and painful read, but it's so sympathetically and honestly rendered that it's hard to put down. This not only covers the height of Adam's success, but also the prolonged period when his stardom had waned and his personal life and mental health began to unravel. It would have been easy (and perhaps understandable) had he chosen to gloss over this spell, but to his credit he has laid this bare in front of the reader, warts and all.

It's easy to write Adam Ant off as an 80s has been, but really the scope of his success, and his enduring influence on modern music cannot be underestimated. His triumphant return to form over the last few years (sold out big venue UK & US tours) is testament to his artistry and sheer damn spirit and hard work. So well deserved!

Obviously if you're an Ant fan you'll love this, but even if you're less die-hard than most, this is a thoroughly absorbing page turner.
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on 1 February 2012
I was a big fan of Adam Ant in the late 70s, before he went on to become mega with the whole cowboys, Indians and pirates thing. I first saw the band in an early incarnation at Wardour Street's Vortex Club supporting my other fave ('before they became famous') band Siouxsie and the Banshees. I liked the vaguely dangerous atmosphere at the gigs, loved the edgy show, the frankly weird songs about S&M, Dirk Bogarde, and Hampstead ('not a place for revolutions - you're deprived of being deprived'). So the parts of this book that interested me most were those that dealt with this early period, and it went all too quickly. Adam's rise to fame was accompanied by sex addiction, an inability to stay in one place for too long - he bought several houses, in several places, in which he barely lived before selling them - and an inability to stay in the steady relationships he craved. It's all here, set out frankly, and rather heartbreakingly at times, and I was reading, thinking, 'How did you screw that up AGAIN...' The repetitive nature of Adam's various and numerous affairs with women, conflicts with managers and record companies comes through in the book, and, far from making it a bad read, underlines the nature of what is gradually revealed: his incipient mental illness, culminating in his well-publicised instances of being sectioned and prosecuted. I can't really complain about the lack of detail in the early years - the early versions of the Ants just formed a phase he went through - but I'd like to have seen more detail of the creative aspects; how did he come to write this song or that, what was in his mind at the time. The number of collaborators he worked with grew, but he writes off their endeavours with yet another statement on the lines of 'so we got together and wrote more songs'. His observations on the early punk scene and some of its characters are quite well done - including two punch-ups with Sid Vicious - and his time spent with characters as larger-than-life as Derek Jarman, Jordan (Pamela Rooke, so much more than a 'shop assistant for Vivienne Westwood') and Malcolm McLaren. Adam's quest to 'get into the movies' draws a lot of time in the book, and his sense of despair at being offered yet another role as a 'sort of rock star figure' comes over very well; unfortunately, he starts to tell it as desperately as he must have appeared to be, finally making the wrong choices of roles in films destined to be B-movies before they were even finished. The end seems positive - the Kindle version has a long footnote about having his book out and knowing that there are still people out there who are fans, a new relationship that at last seems stable and a positive turn to his life. He did a series of gigs throughout 2011 - look them up on YouTube - in which he seems to have regained his old songs and his old power and presence, and I hope (being an old admirer, despite his having dropped off my radar for 20 years) that continues for him.
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on 14 July 2017
Great book, pageturner, need an update on you Adam!
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on 21 June 2017
as described
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on 19 June 2017
Brilliant book! Can't recommend enough!
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on 23 May 2013
I loved this fella in the 80's but reading his book made me see him in a very different light. This man is so sad in himself, what a terrible life he had. Depression is a very crule illness, feel so sorry for him and hope he stays strong in the future. A good but sad read.
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on 26 September 2006
A brutally honest account of the life of very talented man. I'm so glad Adam finally decided to write his life story as it is both upsetting and fascinating. It gives one a totally different perspective into the life of a pop star and it doesn't pull any punches.Alcoholism ,spousal abuse,stalkers,it's all here and told in a way that makes you not want to put the book down.Highly recommended to all and especially to "Antpeople" everywhere.

Well done!
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on 16 May 2008
A very interesting and sometimes frankly sad history of one of the most enigmatic pop stars of the early 80s and 90s.

As well as his childhood and his rise to fame and the comedown afterwards, he talks about punk at it's peak in London in the 70s. What is also fascinating is that he talks frankly of his depression and manic episodes and the truth behind some of his relationships and sexual exploits.

This is a very well written book, honest and truthful. I rather think that writing this book helped Adam defeat some of his demons and the added epilogue which is an addition to the paperback version not in the hardback is a lovely touch, where he talks about the book signings and his ongoing road to recovery.

Before I read this book, I thought he was a good musician and I liked his music and only knew what had been written about him in the press. After reading this book I find that now not only do I now love his music, I admire and respect this man.

Well worth a read if you have any interest in punk, the early 80s/new romantic era and pop music in general.
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on 10 November 2007
I have been a fan of Adam since I the eighties and admire him so much. He has been a true influence on the music industry and on myself personally. He writes this book with honesty and I hope more people can understand him now and give him the support he needs and deserves. He has been through so much yet accomplished more than most people. This book is great even if you have never heard of him. I hope we will be seeing much more of him in the future! Best of luck Adam!
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on 12 October 2006
I have always been a massive Ants fan, ever since getting there first LP Dirk Wears White Sox back in 1980. Despite losing interest in his music once he went solo, I was still intrigued to find out more about the man and his music. As I travel a lot, I bought the audio version so I could listen in the car. It starts off going into painstaking detail about his early life in a flat with a violent father and abused mother, which was quite touching and probably helps set the scene for some of his personality problems later in life. However, although the start of the book is packed with detail, it has masses of sections which are just flipped past. The launching of Dirk and Kings albums receives a small mention, but details of a relationship with Jamie Lee Curtis or his on-stage knee problems receive much coverage. I would have loved to have heard more about his dynamic with other band members, and the thinking behind some of the crazy songs on Dirk, but alas it isnt in there. Maybe its in the book, after all the CD is abridged, but I am loathed to buy it again to find out. All in all, it was an entertaining 4 hours, that made the trip to work more bearable. It was also very well written, and oozing with humour, with his dry sarcasm and cynicism often making me chuckle. Give it a whirl if you are an Ant fan.
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