کتاب های مرتبط
- نقد و بررسی
- دیدگاه کاربران
نقد و بررسی
November 5, 2012
Canadian critic Monk (Weird Sex and Snowshoes: And Other Canadian Film Phenomena) presents a curious survey of Joni Mitchell's life and myth, lying somewhere between biography and music criticism. For the most part, the author makes a convincing case that certain pivotal moments in Mitchell's life and career are inseparable from, and essential to, a full understanding of corresponding moments in her vast and enigmatic output. This is exemplified in such passages as the extensive explanation of the effect Mitchell's childhood bout with polio had on the development of her singular guitar style. The anecdotal portions of the book are exceedingly well told, and most of the connections the author makes are cited substantially. In contrast, Monk often makes detours into Joni Mitchell mythology that, while clearly written from a place of affection and admiration, contrasts strangely with adjacent passages of a more factual nature, to disorienting effect. Readers expecting a straightforward biography, or those without a front-to-back familiarity with her catalogue may be further disoriented by Monk's tendency to arrange the narrative by topic, rather than strict chronology. With these caveats, however, the book is still essential for the Joni Mitchell superfan, and even people more casually acquainted with her work may enjoy what they learn.
Starred review from December 1, 2012
Biographies of Joni Mitchell are attempted every few years, but the definitive one will have to wait until the singer-songwriter tells her own story. In the meantime, Monk's (Weird Sex & Snowshoes: And Other Canadian Film Phenomena) is the closest thing to essential reading. She describes her book as a "rambling adventure into the creative soul," and it follows Mitchell's path to popular and critical success as well as her self-imposed exile from that success, while frankly addressing the highs and lows of her career and personal life. One intriguing aspect of the book is Monk's pursuit of a kind of Mitchell-approved reading list (because of her subject's own interest in philosophy). Monk uses Martin Heidegger, Joseph Campbell, and especially Friedrich Nietzsche to tell Mitchell's story and shape the narrative of her creative odyssey. VERDICT Monk's own personality frequently surfaces, and it's noteworthy that the last two major books on Mitchell--this and Michelle Mercer's Will You Take Me as I Am--each fuse factual information with a strong authorial presence; it speaks to the impact Mitchell's music can have on an individual and makes for an engaging narrative. This unique and thoughtful biography is recommended for all fans of Joni Mitchell.--Peter Thornell, Hingham P.L., MA
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