Me by Elton John

Me by Elton John
Publisher: Henry Holt & Co
Genre: Non-Fiction, Memoir
Rating: 4.5 stars
Reviewed by Nymphaea

In his first and only official autobiography, music icon Elton John reveals the truth about his extraordinary life, from his rollercoaster lifestyle as shown in the film Rocketman, to becoming a living legend.

Christened Reginald Dwight, he was a shy boy with Buddy Holly glasses who grew up in the London suburb of Pinner and dreamed of becoming a pop star. By the age of twenty-three he was performing his first gig in America, facing an astonished audience in his bright yellow dungarees, a star-spangled T-shirt, and boots with wings. Elton John had arrived and the music world would never be the same again.

His life has been full of drama, from the early rejection of his work with song-writing partner Bernie Taupin to spinning out of control as a chart-topping superstar; from half-heartedly trying to drown himself in his LA swimming pool to disco-dancing with Princess Diana and Queen Elizabeth; from friendships with John Lennon, Freddie Mercury, and George Michael to setting up his AIDS Foundation to conquering Broadway with Aida, The Lion King, and Billy Elliot the Musical. All the while Elton was hiding a drug addiction that would grip him for over a decade.
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In Me, Elton also writes powerfully about getting clean and changing his life, about finding love with David Furnish and becoming a father. In a voice that is warm, humble, and open, this is Elton on his music and his relationships, his passions and his mistakes. This is a story that will stay with you by a living legend.

Tantrums and Tiaras had nothing on this book.

I went into this book knowing I loved Elton John’s music. I assumed I’d like him as a person, too. He’s complicated and can be a bit of a pain in the behind, but I wouldn’t expect him any other way. His writing is honest and flows well. Plus, he’s candid. He doesn’t pull punches. He talks about his relationship with his mother, his father–both ridiculously complicated–and his love life. Then there’s his music.

In the grand scheme of things, he rather glosses over the music. It’s almost like it’s there, but it’s not the focus. I kind of liked that because he talks more about himself than the songs. But if you’re looking for his insights on his music, then this might not be the right book.

I loved how he described his feelings about David, his husband, and how he fell in love and opted to have kids. It’s sweet, complicated and worth the read. There are the kiss and tell moments, but this is more than that. It’s his honest recollection of his life–full of dents, holes, wrong turns and love.

If you want an autobiography that doesn’t come off preach and will keep your interest, then this is the book to try. Elton John fans, check it out!

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