I'm a lifelong Jeff Beck fan, so buying and reading this book was a no-brainer, and I enjoyed every page. It's important, though, to know what this is and what it isn't.
What it is is a book about Beck's life in music, an almost encyclopedic account of just about every tour, influence, instrument, recording session, and collaboration in Beck's career, framed by his aspirations, tastes, and, at the beginning of the book, his childhood discovery of the guitar and almost desperate drive to acquire one and learn to play it. We learn about his friends in music, some of them, like Jimmy Page, lifetime collaborators, influences, and thorns in his side.
What it isn't is any kind of probing character study or psychological reflection on Beck as a person. Other than those childhood scenes at the beginning of the book and his relationships with other musicians, we don't find out all that much about Beck's personality, at least beyond what we already knew about his younger, prickly days and his later reputation as a humble, self-effacing, gentle soul. There's some space given to his fanatic attraction to hot rods, relatively little to his marriages and other significant relationships.
All that's fine with me -- I don't really care to have Beck's psyche dissected for me. I'd rather hear and learn about how he developed his one-of-a-kind style, how he navigated (sometimes truly by random steering, it seems like) through all the musical fads and styles from the late 50s through to today. That propelled me through the book. I discovered more than I ever knew about the artists and music that inspired and influenced Beck, and spent more money than I probably should have chasing down a lot of that music on iTunes, eBay, and Amazon.
This book satisfied an itch for me, to understand more about Beck's music, how he got to where he got (all the different places he's gone), and maybe a little bit of why, of all the great guitarists we've seen, he is so unique that you find yourself saying that this guitarist or that guitarist, well they're great, but they're not Jeff Beck.
I'd like to have something more critical to say, and I'm sure someone's going to find factual errors here and there (actually, I will mention that there are numerous typos in the book -- missing words, wrong words -- all the things that escape spellcheck), but this was a great learning experience for me.