Come Fly with MeThe Blurb

Come Fly With Me reveals Delich’s true behind-the-scenes story of the raw beginnings of Michael Bublé’s struggles and the stepping stones that led to his ascent to the top. “From the very beginning, deep inside his heart and soul, Michael wanted the brass ring and nothing less”, says Delich. “Even facing adversity, his desire for a major label and a major management company were the objectives.”

Michael valued dearly Delich’s professionalism, her belief in him and her dedication – even referring to her as his “safety net”. That was all Delich needed to continue on her decade long journey with him.

In eight warm, engaging and honest chapters, readers will learn how difficult the journey to superstardom was with countless early rejections, many naysayers and doors to the entertainment “moguls” that appeared to be closed. But with Delich guiding the path, the doors were always “slightly ajar.” With her tenacity, encouragement and whole-hearted belief in Michael, Delich did not stop until the record label was in place and industry legend Bruce Allen agreed to manage his next leg of international superstardom.

The Review

I am conflicted about Come Fly with Me by Beverly Delich. On the one hand it is a very interesting read. On the other hand I can’t help but think that the author has used her relationship with Michael Bublé as a cash cow.

Ok so let’s look at this logically. Beverly Delich’s relationship with Michael Bublé did happen. That is not up for question. However, the first few chapters of the book have nothing at all to do with him. They are self indulgent and they seem irrelevant to what the selling point of the book is about.

Beverly Delich spends the first few chapters waxing lyrical about her life. It takes a while before the story of Michael Bublé’s meteoric rise to success even begins. To be fair, even when that does happen, the story is centred on the feelings and emotions of Beverly Delich rather than Michael Bublé. This would not be a problem if Delich hadn’t used Bublé to sell the story.

Here is where further conflict comes into play. Come Fly with Me is really well written. No one can dispute this. For me, the story was just sold in a false way. I thought I was getting a Michael Bublé story but instead I got something different.

Come Fly With Me by Beverly Delich is available now.

BossypantsThe Blurb

Once in a generation a woman comes along who changes everything. Tina Fey is not that woman, but she met that woman once and acted weird around her.

Before 30 Rock, Mean Girls and ‘Sarah Palin’, Tina Fey was just a young girl with a dream: a recurring stress dream that she was being chased through a local airport by her middle-school gym teacher.

She also had a dream that one day she would be a comedian on TV. She has seen both these dreams come true.

At last, Tina Fey’s story can be told. From her youthful days as a vicious nerd to her tour of duty on Saturday Night Live; from her passionately halfhearted pursuit of physical beauty to her life as a mother eating things off the floor; from her one-sided college romance to her nearly fatal honeymoon – from the beginning of this paragraph to this final sentence.

Tina Fey reveals all, and proves what we’ve all suspected: you’re no one until someone calls you bossy.

The Review

Memoirs are not really my thing. I dip in and out of them sporadically rather than being an avid reader. However, every once in a while I find an autobiography that really impresses me; Tin Fey’s Bossypants really impressed me.

With her inimitable sass, Fey walks you through key moments in her life flashing you a sardonic smile along the way. What is really great is that Fey peels back the layers of “celebrity” and lets you see the person behind it. She doesn’t do this with sad stories, tragic past and constant failures but by showing just how damn hard she worked to get to the level of success she is privy to.

It would be cheesy to say that her story is inspirational because to be honest we all want the lazy way to success – for it to just fall into our hands – but it is uplifting to see someone who seems so together saying that she is just human.

It is probably due to this level-headedness that makes Fey so likeable.

With her book Bossypants Fey adds another quiver to her bow of talent.

Bossypants by Tina Fey is available now.

Follow Tina Fey (@NotTinaFey) on Twitter.

4 Stars

The Blurb

*Winner of the 2014 Goodreads Choice Award for Best Business Book*

In the space of ten years, Sophia Amoruso has gone from high-school dropout to founder and Executive Chairman of Nasty Gal, one of the fastest-growing retailers in the world.

Sophia’s never been a typical executive, or a typical anything, and she’s written #GIRLBOSS for other girls like her: outsiders (and insiders) seeking a unique path to success.

Filled with brazen wake-up calls, cunning and frank observations, and behind-the-scenes stories from Nasty Gal’s meteoric rise, #GIRLBOSS covers a lot of ground. It proves that success doesn’t come from where you went to college or how popular you were in school. Success is about trusting your instincts and following your gut, knowing which rules to follow and which to break.

Inspiring, motivating and empowering, #GIRLBOSS will give you the kick up the ass you need to reach your potential.

The Review

Sophia Amaruso is (among a plethora of other titles) the founder of Nasty Gal Vintage; a multimillion dollar company that started out as a little boutique on eBay. In #GIRLBOSS, Amoruso reveals how she managed her meteoric rise in the business world.

If you are looking for a paint-by-numbers, step-by-step guide to business success then you are looking in the wrong place. If, however, you are looking to read in inspirational story of hard work and reaping the benefits of that labour then maybe, just maybe, #GIRLBOSS is the book for you.

Following her natural instincts, Amoruso took her love of vintage fashion and took it right to the bank but she didn’t do this with a business degree or knowledge of the fashion world. No, Amoruso did it by following what she felt was right and with a (some would say) foolhardy determination. Along the way she learnt the ropes, knew what would sell, how to sell it, putting the customer first and also the power of social media Amoruso’s natural business acumen oozes off each and every page. You don’t think it is a coincidence that the title has a hash tag in it, do you?

One thing is for sure is that Sophia Amoruso is an inspiration. I hadn’t even finished it and I started believing that I could reach my goals and that I hadn’t fully realised my potential yet. Amoruso may not have set out to become the poster child for success but she has garnered that role through her perseverance and uncanny ability to understand the fashion market.

#GIRLBOSS by Sophia Amoruso is available now.

*Many thanks to Annie Hollands from @penguinrandomhouse for sending me a copy of #GIRLBOSS to review.

The Blurb

Part memoir, part master class by one of the bestselling authors of all time, this superb volume is a revealing and practical view of the writer’s craft, comprising the basic tools of the trade every writer must have. King’s advice is grounded in the vivid memories from childhood through his emergence as a writer, from his struggling early career to his widely reported, near-fatal accident in 1999 – and how the inextricable link between writing and living spurred his recovery.

There is a reason why Stephen King is one of the bestselling writers in the world, ever. Described in the Guardian as ‘the most remarkable storyteller in modern American literature’, Stephen King writes books that draw you in and are impossible to put down.

The Review

I have wanted to read On Writing for a long time but the thought of picking it up terrified me. Not because Stephen King is a master of the horror genre; he undoubtedly is. It was actually the fear of what came next that made me scared to read it. As a wannabe fiction author I read a lot of books about how to write and a lot of them give practical advice – do this, don’t do that etc. However, what I found when reading On Writing was more than tick boxes of what I should do; I found inspiration. I managed to plot the novel that I would like to write from beginning to end and since then I have been feeling like I have reached a creative boom. Now, I am not completely giving Stephen King credit for this, it was my idea after all, but I cannot denounce his efforts.

I didn’t really know what to expect with On Writing. I didn’t read the subheading about it being a memoir and if I had I guess what I read wouldn’t have come as much of a shock. It is a fascinating read. If it was a fictional story it is about a man who perseveres until he gets to fulfil his dream of being a writer and that is always going to be inspiring. King’s wit, wisdom and experience drip off the pages and you feel compelled to keep reading. This is by far the best (and ok, the only) writing manual/memoir that I have ever read.

Whilst the advice about writing wasn’t the typical or formulaic type that you would find in other manuals it did serve (for me anyway) as a starting off point – I probably wont remember the exact point ten books from now – in the moment, I found it to be rather useful.

It has to be said that the postscript was the best part of the book. King describes an experience of being knocked over by a bad driver with unmerciful detail that you feel like you have been knocked over yourself. His description of the event was phenomenal. Based on that reason alone, I highly recommend On Writing to anyone and everyone. There is a reason why Stephen King is a bestselling author.

On Writing by Stephen King is available now.

On Writing

1996. Back in New York having studied in England, Joanna Rakoff lands into the real world with a bump. She takes a job in a publishing agency performing menial tasks for her outdated boss, whose sole client is JD Salinger. Unfamiliar with his work, Rakoff fails to see the importance of Jerry (how JD Salinger is referred to throughout the memoir) or the impact that any of his writing as had on his followers.

And having not published anything recently, JD Salinger’s stories seems as archaic as the office in which Joanna works. She has to copy dictation by an old typewriter as computers are strictly forbidden. Her office is like a museum, steeped in the history of the publishing world and not as fast paced or as modern as it should be. That is until Salinger decides that it is time to publish another piece of writing and things slowly start to change.

Rakoff’s year of working in the agency is chronicled in My Salinger Year. Rakoff explains her time there with heart warming candour and sentimentality. Her relationships with the people around her – her parents, her boss, her colleagues, her boyfriend and indeed, the man himself JD Salinger – all shape and define her during this period. Throughout her story you cannot help but see parallels between Rakoff and some of Salinger’s characters, for me this was mainly due to the theme of growing up which is ever present. Rakoff is likeable and so easy to relate to, especially if you yourself are in that transition period of becoming a fully fledged adult.

I loved this book. Really loved it but what I felt more of was the desire to know the author. A strange similarity (that even I have to acknowledge) to some of the Salinger fans that Rakoff found herself writing to. I wanted to ask her questions about her experiences; to know what part of the book she would choose to do a reading of; to hear more of her anecdotes from this time in her life.  I loved My Salinger Year for the intimacy that Rakoff created between herself and me, the reader. However, I will point out to all who read it or who are contemplating reading it that this book is dangerous. You will start it and lose hours of your life because it is difficult to put down. Don’t say that you haven’t been warned.

My Salinger Year by Joanna Rakoff is available now.

My Salinger Year Cover