Autobiography Memoir Reviews

Book Review | Me

July 5, 2020
Me by Elton john book and audiobook on bookshelf by Jess pierron

by Elton John

“Elton John is the most enduringly successful singer-songwriter of all time. His life is extraordinary, his seven decades (so far) packed with incredible highs and lows, Now, in his own words and with his usual honesty, he shares his story – every hilarious, heartbreaking moment. Me will take you on an intimate journey with a living legend.”

Elton John.

Just saying his name sparks my emotions. When I think of Elton John, I see color, music, happiness. In my opinion (and in the opinion of countless others) he is one of today’s most creative living legends. My first love of Elton John began in the early ’90s when I heard “Crocodile Rock” playing on our local radio station. As a teenager, I fell deeply in love with “Your Song” (thank you Ewan McGregor and the cast of Moulin Rouge!) and “Tiny Dancer” (or as Phoebe Buffay in Friends would say, “Tony Danza”).

But as I got older, I began to wonder about the man behind the music. Me by Elton John is a beautifully raw book. Referring to what I stated earlier, when I think of Elton John, I see color, music, and happiness. After reading this book, it’s clear that Elton’s life was not just rainbows and butterflies. He lived a great life but chose some tough paths to get him there. 

Me follows the journey of Elton John’s life from childhood all the way to 2019 and boy, what a ride. As a fan of his movie Rocketman, it was lovely to hear his story from his own words and not the spin of Hollywood. He writes about his rejections in the music business; writing with life long friend Bernie Taupin; deep friendships with John Lennon, Freddie Mercury, and George Michael; getting clean and setting up his AIDS foundation; finding love after so many heartbreaks.

Elton also quotes so many of his songs, and the meaning behind many, which gave me a whole new appreciation for his work. While reading this book, I found myself hoping to Spotify or YouTube to listen to a song mentioned that I had never heard of; and falling in love with Elton all over again. 

The physical book has many pictures of Elton through the years which gave it such a personal touch. The audiobook, read by Taron Egerton who plays the role of Elton John in the movie Rocketman, was absolutely fantastic! 

If you enjoy Elton John’s music and are curious like I was about the man behind it all (and his crazy life and friends to go with), I highly recommend picking up this book.

I started to think about how I looked onstage. I wanted to be a frontman, but I was trapped behind a piano. I couldn’t strut around like Mick Jagger, or smash my instrument up like Jimi Hendrix or Pete Townshend: bitter subsequent experience has taught me that if you get carried away and try and smash up a piano by pushing it offstage, you end up looking less like a lawless rock god and more like a furniture removal man having a bad day.

Elton John, Me

I spent my whole life trying to run away from Reg Dwight, because Reg Dwight really wasn’t a happy budgie. But what running away from Reg Dwight taught me is that when I got too far from him, too removed from the normal person I once was, things went horribly wrong; I was more miserable than ever. I need – everybody needs – some connection to reality.

Elton John, Me

PUBLICATION DETAILS: Henry Holt and Company; 15 October 2019; 375 pages; Memoir & Autobiography

AUDIOBOOK DETAILS: Macmillan Audio; 14 October 2019; approx. 12 hours; Narrators: Taron Egerton and Elton John

Click here to purchase your copy of Me by Elton John.

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