Digital and Audio Truth (Not even John’s book can escape from being used as blog title…)

Happy Halloween!!

I’m still struggling with the concept that it’s really Halloween.  I put up all of our decorations, I’ve got the Tinker Bell costume ready for the youngest…and naturally I have a good supply of candy on hand for our trick or treaters this evening, but wow….it’s really Halloween and the end of October??  Already??

Part of this problem is that of course, this means my birthday is coming in a week and sadly I must add another year onto my age.  I’ve been “practicing” saying 42 already.  Ick.  I’m going to just switch the numbers around.  I like the sound of “24” much better, although my oldest – bless her for bringing me down to earth – tells me that there is “NO WAY” I could pull off 24.  Before I take that as an insult, I must remember that she is in fact nearly 16.  I definitely did not have a child at the age of 8 *big sigh* so I suppose she’s right.  Damn.

The OTHER part of this though, is that as of about midnight last night (give or take since I wasn’t there in person), John’s book tour is over.  Thus begins the long dry spell of being a Duran fan, I suppose.  It will likely go months before we hear any news about the album (given that of course they haven’t even begun studio time yet), and still much longer before some small little snippet that makes absolutely no sense and gives no idea of direction or anything else comes to light with all of us tweeting “Wait, is that for real?  Is that from this NEW album or something that was unearthed from before?”  or “Is THAT what they’re doing?  Gah – that sounds like crap!  Where’s the guitar?” (or bass, or keyboards, or drums…etc.)  “Who are they working with now?  Why???”  Oh yes.  I can hardly wait.

I won’t give away the details of Amanda’s signing experience last night – as that’s for her to tell, but I will say that I got a very excited phone call from her after it was over.  She had three hours to kill on the way home, you know.  I will also say that I have a signed book coming from Wisconsin, which I am really excited to have and hold.  In addition, I will say that my book has a little doodle of the American flag on the page that John signed.  I’m amused by that, and I’m  amused that Amanda’s book and my book complement one another – just as I believe she and I complement one another on the blog and in real life.  Our friendship works well, even when some would assume otherwise. (because we are so very different)

I haven’t gone to a signing, but I have been spending my afternoons with JT in the car as I drive to pick my oldest up from school.  I have to tell you – and I know this isn’t our typical book club day on the blog, but if you haven’t gotten the audiobook yet, you really should.  I read the book back in September when it came out in the UK – I bought myself a Kindle copy.  I read the book very quickly – within mere hours as though it were a last meal.  (Truthfully I just didn’t put it down)  Then I received my US version of the book along with the audiobook. I really didn’t know what to expect with the audiobook because I’d never listened to one before.  I LOVE IT.  Love. IT!  Sure, it’s John Taylor reading the book, and that definitely has it’s own sort of appeal, but it’s not just that.  Having him read the book, as though he’s telling his story directly to you, gives him the opportunity to put emphasis on the things he feels are important. The spoken word is extremely powerful in a way I really hadn’t considered before. For instance, today I listened to John read chapter 56 – Dead Day Ahead.  I have to admit that when I first read the book I don’t think I really picked up on the subtle nuances that John was trying to convey.  It’s not just about his being “wired to the back teeth”, or the fact that out of clear blue nowhere he up and decided to write a chorale for Fr. Cassidy.  Sure, you can certainly read it that way – as I am sure many did.  It’s so much more than just that though. When John speaks his truth, tells HIS story – you can hear his frame of mind.  You can hear just how slightly manic he was, how slightly off the rails he’d really gotten.  Sure, it was the coke, and the last line in this chapter says it all.  “I had just enough coke left to get me through this next call.”

I won’t lie. A part of me died when I read that.  I felt mortified for John and worried about what might happen next.

I love books. I absolutely adore reading, and I try to read as often as I can. There’s a sort of family folklore surrounding the age in which I first started picking out words and then sentences to my dad – he read to me every single night before I went to bed.  It was his job, and I so looked forward to that time each night.  (I guess I’ve always enjoyed having someone read to me!) The story goes that one night when I was about two-and-a-half (those six months are important), my dad made a mistake while reading – he missed a word or something, and I pointed it out.  Then I started reading sentences to him.  I guess that by the time I was in kindergarten at the age of 5, the teacher didn’t know what to do with me because I was already reading full books.  Judy Blume’s Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing was a favorite.  There are probably a lot of reasons why I love reading so much, but the truth is – nothing transports me away from reality faster than a good book.  I have a tough time putting them down, and John’s book is no exception.  Even though it’s his story (not Duran Duran’s story – I don’t know why fans have such a hard time with this concept – the members of the band are individuals, each with their own experiences, brains, emotions, etc), when I read, and more importantly when I listen, I feel like I’m right there in the moment with him.

I still kick myself though, because there is way more to John Taylor than just his pretty face and just this band.  I hope that other fans can read the book and really absorb that.  Judging from our book discussions though – very few are taking the time.  It’s kind of sad, actually.

-R

10 thoughts on “Digital and Audio Truth (Not even John’s book can escape from being used as blog title…)”

  1. I like Duran Duran, but I also enjoy following John Taylor on Twitter. I really do want to read the book and hear what he has to say. I am not trying to be harsh towards people who cannot separate an individual from a group, but I think this is the kind of thinking that makes people go a bit bonkers every time a real life couple that plays one on a movie breaks-up. Gee, your blog is really keeping me interested, and I definitely need to get John's book.

  2. Amanda and I have talked a lot about this recently – that people seem to have a difficult time separating the band (Duran Duran) from the individuals (John, Roger, Nick, Simon, Andy, Warren, and even Dom to some extent), and vice-versa. I think this is one reason why everyone jumps whenever the band announces or does something, but there is far less excitement when it's an individual band member doing something on their own. I think for many (but not all) fans, it's a matter of the sum of all the parts being more than each individual.

    I'd like for our blog to try and highlight each member as an individual. They are all different people with their own thoughts, feelings, beliefs, etc. I love that Duran Duran takes a bit from all of them to make this fantastic band – but I think they are worth respecting as individuals as well. Maybe it's a case where people just can't get past the band – it's this huge entity that we've never really been able to come to complete terms with, and so as a result of that it's difficult to separate the individuals from the group. I don't know, but I'm enjoying the journey of trying to examine all of it, even if I'm causing explosions in the heads of fans as a result. 😀 -R

  3. I am reading the book on kindle and listening to it. LOVE both. I like hearing because you can hear the words John chooses to emphasize and you know those are important to hear. The kindle version has pictures that I enjoy too. I am glad that I have both versions. I was hoping to get a book with a signature, but that did not happen…
    Michelle Browner

  4. Maybe Amanda knows this already but DD facebook added more photos to the Chicago Go Tag Yourself album & she is in there gettin her book signed. My friend & I made it in the album too!!! YAY!!!!

  5. I'm almost finished with the audio book and I've already decided I am going to listen to it again – it is really THAT good, and I'm learning so much. It's the subtle stuff that I continue to pick up on, it's great – besides, we're not finished with the book discussion and this way it'll stay fresh in my head! -R

  6. I am also having an amazing time listening to John read his story to me while I travel to/from work.
    I purchased the kindle version when it was released in Australia and read it quickly. Then my family got me the paperback so I had the full glossy pictures and finally I downloaded the audio book. Living in Australia we don't have many opportunities to see the band live and there was no book tour here. So listening to John speak is pretty amazing. I think I will use the book to listen to if I have a long bus or plane trip, it would be really soothing to have in my ears and what better way to get to sleep 😉
    I am really enjoying your book review and also the recent discussion of Andy's book.
    Love your work!
    Deanna

  7. I think the audiobook is even more special for the people who haven't had the opportunity to see or hear them much – you are right. I'm glad John took the time to record it.

    Glad you're enjoying the blog – thanks for commenting!!
    -R

We (Amanda and Rhonda) appreciate discussion and differences of opinion. We respectfully ask that you fully read the blog before bitching us out. If you're only here to take us down a notch, note that we moderate replies (meaning we're not printing rude comments). Thanks a bunch!

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