One thing I’ve always been while writing reviews of various things is honest, so I will tell you right up front that I know Astrid, and not just on the Internet. We were never best buds, but we did hang out a bit back in the 80s, during her days as the lead singer for Sacred Child. I have a lot of respect for Astrid and the things she has gone through, and I just flat like the chick. So there you have my bias going in…
When Astrid told me she had a book coming out in April 2008, I arranged for an advanced copy immediately. Now, this was back in December… I thought I had been dismissed by the publisher and would have to wait like everyone else. Then the book arrived a week or two ago. They had mailed it in December…. it just took the Postal Service 2 months to get the damned thing to Sweden. Urgh. But, I have it now. I have read it. And I loved it.
Now, when I heard about ‘Being Young,’ my first reaction was that I really didn’t want to read about Neil so much. I wanted to read about Astrid. I think a lot of folks are going to be expecting a book on Neil’s life… yet another book on Neil’s life, I should say. That is not what this is.
Their father, Scott Young, had written a book about Neil called ‘Neil and Me’ and Astrid takes up where he left off, but it is not all about Neil this and Neil that. Not at all. Oh there is plenty of stuff about her brother, I mean, when you are writing about your family life then there is no way out of writing about your siblings, is there?
But ‘Being Young’ is mostly about what it was like for her to grow up in this famous family, and how it effected her own music career. This book is exactly what I wanted to read.
Astrid has a very folksy-friendly writing style. When the book arrived I flipped the pages just to get a peak – planning to read it later when I had more time to myself. I put it down 3/4s of the way through only after my husband begged me to shut the light off so he could get some sleep.
Let that be a warning to you: This book will suck you in the minute you open it, so do not do so until you can read it cover-to-over. It is a page turner, make no mistake.
I will say that there were a few (very few) things that were repeated (briefly) here and there. That did not detract at all from my enjoyment of the book. I learned a lot about Astrid, and the Young family, that I hadn’t known before. Some happy, some sad, and some slightly embarrassing for me… I had interviewed Astrid for Teen Trend Magazine last fall and got a crucial time-line item wrong. She was gracious enough not to cuss me out for it when it hit the newsstands. (Thank you, Astrid. I see my mistake now and am profoundly chastised…)
My recommendation is that you go ahead and order it now. It will hit the shelves in April, but you can order it at Insomniac Press. The price is in Canadian so it isn’t as much as it first appears if you’re American
There is a lot of insight in this book. Even if you are not a fan of either Astrid or Neil, read it for the enjoyment of a good book on family interactions. ‘Being Young’ is a 5 out of 5 stars book… even if I didn’t know her personally.