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Bruce Hardcover – Oct 30 2012

8 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 512 pages
  • Publisher: Touchstone; 1st Edition edition (Oct. 30 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1439191824
  • ISBN-13: 978-1439191828
  • Product Dimensions: 15.5 x 4.6 x 23.2 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 726 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #5,597 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description


Bruce delivers. . . . Carlin gets across why Mr. Springsteen has meant so much, for so long, to so many people.” (New York Times)

“Do we need another Springsteen biography? The answer, here, is yes, thanks in large part to Carlin’s tireless reporting, which helps straighten out some of the lore-laden stories of Springsteen’s early years in New Jersey, and further illuminates his later struggles with depression.” (Boston Globe)

"There are probably more books about Bruce Springsteen than there are about any other rock star of his generation. But until one comes out with the words 'By Bruce Springsteen' on the cover, Bruce will be the definitive one." (The Star-Ledger)

“Interviews with bandmates, family members, and exes paint an unflinching portrait of the rock icon... Dives into Springsteen’s personal life in unprecedented depth... No previous biographer has uncovered as much about Springsteen’s family.” (Rolling Stone)

“Carlin’s exhaustively researched portrait of rock and roll’s working-class hero delivers everything a fan could wish for.” (People)

"An astute engaging account." (USA Today)

“The notoriously private Springsteen lends enough of his voice to Carlin’s biography to enhance its credibility. . . . Unless Springsteen decides to pen a memoir, this is as close as we’ll get to Springsteen unmasked.” (Atlanta Journal-Constitution)

“Though not officially an official biography, it's close, with access to Springsteen, his family members and family archives making for a far more detailed and comprehensive chronicle than Dave Marsh's enthusiastic books from '79 and '87.” (Chicago Tribune / Printers Row)

"Bruce Springsteen has been a muscular American icon for so long it's hard to remember that he was once a scrawny kid from Nowhere, New Jersey, struggling to find his way. Peter Ames Carlin not only brings that kid into sharp focus, he connects the dots between the small-town boy and the superstar he became, in all his memorable incarnations--boardwalk poet, working-class hero, middle-aged philosopher, rock and roll evangelist, political activist. This is the big, expansive biography Bruce's fans have been waiting for." (Tom Perrotta)

“An honest portrayal of the rock & roll legend.” (Entertainment Weekly)

"An epic look at the man and his music." (Kirkus Reviews)

"For all those of us who grew up on the Jersey Shore, chasing Bruce and the band every weekend: the chase is over. It’s all here. Everything we didn't know then -- we're surprised to learn now. It's close, it's intimate -- the master of introspection allows some full-on inspection of his life." (Brian Williams, NBC News)

“There are many things I could and should be doing right now, but I am not… I am reading and rereading this book. Why did you do this to me?” (Jon Stewart)

“An unusually intimate portrait.” (Booklist)

"Springsteen is biographical big game: majestic, fugitive, offering the unwary chronicler the possibility that he might get trampled. But Carlin has brought him down, with empathy and shrewdness. Here is Bruce, stylishly captured in all his Brucedom; the everyman, the unknowable; the anointed one, the loner; stadium swagger and dull, private pain. Are these contradictions, or just the span of a man’s soul? Read BRUCE and find out." (James Parker The Atlantic)

"Rock biographer (Peter Ames Carlin) delivers a straight-on, rockin’ and rollin’ life of the Jersey youngster who sold his soul to rock and roll the night he saw Elvis on the Ed Sullivan Show in 1957. Drawing on exclusive interviews with members of the E Street Band, including Clarence Clemons’s final interview, and unrestricted conversations with Springsteen’s family, friends, manager Jon Landau, and Springsteen himself, Carlin takes us on a fascinating journey through Springsteen’s childhood, youth, and his rise to fame out of his early years playing in bands such as the Castiles, Earth, and Child to his most recent concerts in support of his Wrecking Ball album. Carlin energetically drives through the streets of Asbury Park, the bars and arenas around the world where Springsteen continues to work his magic. Carlin gives Springsteen the definitive treatment, and this is by far the best of the many books about the rock and roller, capturing his many moods, his desire to retain his privacy, but his secret craving for superstardom, and, above all, his consummate musicianship and his deep passion for pleasing audiences with rollicking, energetic shows." (Publishers Weekly, Starred Review)

“This definitive biography leaves all other Springsteen books in the dust of its roaring engines." (BookPage)

“If there is anyone who writes about modern musicians better than Carlin does, I don’t know who it could possibly be.” (Buzz Bissinger, author of Friday Night Lights)

"This is a Bruce bio like no other. Carlin's dogged research, tough-minded prose, and above all, ability to draw out the previously private thoughts of almost everyone involved in this remarkable story combine to transform much of what we thought we knew about Bruce. Carlin's recounting of Springsteen's personal and professional struggles, and those of the members of the mighty E Street Band, make this a quintessential American story and one that will resonate, and inspire, as long as the music itself does." (Eric Alterman, author of It Ain't No Sin to Be Glad You're Alive: The Promise of Bruce Springsteen)

“You can toss those other tomes; Peter Ames Carlin has just penned the definitive biography of Bruce Springsteen. . . . A richly researched, extraordinarily entertaining story of one local boy who did pretty darn well for himself.” (Asbury Park Press)

“A solid must-read-thrice for any fan of the superstar. . . . Even for those who have been baptized into the Springsteen ‘religion,’ the book has major revelations. ‘Bruce’ is now the preeminent reference in the study of all things Bruce.” (The Coaster, Asbury Park, NJ)

About the Author

Peter Ames Carlin has been a senior writer for People, a TV critic for The Oregonian newspaper, and is the author of Catch a Wave and Paul McCartney: A Life. Carlin lives in Portland, Oregon.

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By R. Harvie on Jan. 6 2013
Format: Hardcover
What to say?

Firstly Carlin's skill as a wordsmith goes far beyond the typical biographical material we typically see lining the bookshelves. Perhaps, having garnered Sprinsteen's confidence he felt compelled to put it up a notch when having to put his tiding side by side with the stuff of Jungle Road and Racing in the Street.

And, once the reader begins to put aside their own fanatical adoration of "the Boss", and accepts the whole of what Carlin is actually describing, decades of Springsteen's skillfully manufactured persona as America's Everyman is finally pierced as we see Springsteen as he truly is - not some mythical saint from the city, but just a guy.

A very talented guy - but a guy with his faults. Driven by his need for success, he shows diffidence and in fact abusive occasional behavior towards his girlfriends.. And while I'm sure Carlin walked a very careful line to always be sure to describe Springtseen's failings in as positive a light as possible - he does manage to finally bring the reader a truer picture than we've ever been privy to before... In particular, the brutally cold and business-like way that he dispatches band members when no longer sufficient for his needs. The juxtaposition of Springsteen's cold dismissal of original E-Street drummer Vito Lopez, with his effort to be considered a friend of the working man is quite stunning, actually - and cudo's to Carlin for managing to show us the harsh underbelly of what it takes to succeed in Rock and Roll.. This is no place for the "Occupy Wallstreet" crowd.
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By Lillian Stocco on July 14 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Found myself skimming over a few parts of the book that detailed the inner workings of music production which I didn't find interesting and somewhat distracting from the soul of the Bruce saga (because I'm so uninformed about all that technical stuff that goes into making the music - I just really love the outcome). Mostly though the story and writing hooked me and wouldn't let go - it was mesmerizing and felt like "going up" with the "ball that never comes down".
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By Wooper on Oct. 16 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I bought the vinyl Born In The USA in the 80's and loved it. The record jacket was a favourite also. Then I bought the CD Wrecking Ball in 2012 after hearing it nearly every morning on the radio. I bought this book after reading it from the local library and just had to have a copy of my own. This guy is a real musician icon. The gift that keeps on giving. I would call myself a fan now. It was the book that pulled me in. The music laid the tracks to get me there.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Best Springsteen bio yet - informative, honest, dark, silencing, moving and relentless. This is a must have for all collectors of Springsteen memorabilia. Love!
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