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James Hetfield: The Wolf at Metallica's Door [Paperback]

Mark Eglinton

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Book Description

April 22 2010
Metallica's seat at the top-table of rock is already assured. A huge part of their stunning transition from obscure thrash metal pioneers into globe-crushing rock megastars is singer, guitarist and co-songwriter James Hetfield, whose instantly recognisable and overwhelming presence has guided their every dramatic step. Brought up in a household aligned to Christian Science, his early life was inevitably overtly religious, yet by his early teens he was a keen fan of rock acts such as Black Sabbath and Motorhead. Working through the visceral thrash metal underground scene with Metallica, Hetfield exploded onto the global scene with their seminal eponymous album and his place in the rock pantheon was assured. However, behind the scenes was a complex band fronted by a genius who had his own personal battles to fight - internal friction, tragedy and the demands of global fame lacerated the band and in 2001 Hetfield headed into rehab to address 'undisclosed dependencies', throwing the future of Metallica into considerable doubt. His subsequent blistering re-emergence as a re-invented rock legend is a personal and professional triumph; Hetfield's often misunderstood intellectual and warm personality allied to his stunning ability certainly deserves honest recognition - The Wolf At Metallica's Door is the first book to chronicle this remarkable man's life.

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Product Details

  • Paperback
  • Publisher: IMP Publishing Ltd t/a Independent Music Press (April 22 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1906191042
  • ISBN-13: 978-1906191047
  • Product Dimensions: 15.3 x 1.8 x 23.4 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 340 g
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #294,897 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 3.7 out of 5 stars  16 reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Kinda disappointed Sept. 18 2010
By Bellmre24 - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I have followed James and Metallica since the early '80s. Much of what is in the book I already knew. The best part is the beginning, where his childhood and his discovery of music is described. Other than that, it is mostly just a chronological Metallica history. It would be great if James would sit down with a writer and describe for himself his memoirs. Perhaps someday he will. When or if that day comes I will be first in line.

The songs on each album are reviewed and critiqued. I don't really care much for this style of writing because it is very subjective and opinionated. I would much rather hear the man himself describe his thoughts on his music.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Average book Sept. 1 2010
By M. Fonseca - Published on Amazon.com
This is more o chronologic history of Metallica than Hetfield's bio.

At least, it has more information than the usual unauthorized "Control+C, Control+V" biographies around, because the author interviewed, first hand, a lot of people connecte to Hetfield along the years.

Even so, it's a satisfactory reading. The real biographic part about James Hetfield happens only in the beginning of the book, when the author tries to give a general portrait of Hetfield's early years. After that, there is very little that is not common knowledge.

Go for it if you're a die hard Metallica fan. If not, a search in Wikipedia will do it.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Biased May 25 2011
By PerennialQuest - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I couldn't continue reading after they completely sugar coated the way Metallica kicked out Dave Mustaine. It's obviously biased. Even in the Lars/Dave interview from Some Kind of Monster, Dave brings up how they just woke him up, had already packed his bags, and told him he was out. It's twisted in the book and made to seem like it happened so kindly. I'm a fan of both Metallica and Megadeth, but that honestly bothered me. I wanted to read this to learn about James, but once I saw that the author was biased and being dishonest to make Metallica/James look good, I couldn't trust anything else he was saying. I don't recommend it.
6 of 9 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good but not great May 23 2010
By Amazon Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Having been a huge Metallica fan for over 20 years now and having witnessed James Hetfield's stage presents and power live 12 times, I was of course interested in this book. Everyone that knows Metallica knows Jaymz, the riff machine and larger-than-life metal god he is at live shows. I was hoping this book would reveal a little more about James the person. While I have to give the author a lot of credit for his research, I didn't really take anything new from this book. As a matter of fact, 97% of the information is already readily available (such as the Playboy interview which gets quoted throughout the book) to those that do their research or have a general interest in the band and its history. The other 3% comes from interviews with a few people...a couple of James' friends (or so they claim) from back in the day and fellow musicians (most notably Anthrax's Charlie Benante and Megadeth's Dave Ellefson) who give their opinion and insight of James' persona. So, yeah, I guess there were some interesting things revealed but overall I was hoping for more "new" information. Also, the author took it upon himself to critique each album song-by-song which really has nothing to do with James as a person nor do I really care about his musical opinion, although I agree with 90% of it. To me it's clear this guy is a fan with a man-crush on James that decided to write a book about his idol. His writing style is pretty annoying at times as he is trying to be overly clever with his words. The author is also attempting his luck as an amateur psychologist, using his own assumptions to disect why James is who he is. If you are a new fan and want to know more about James and the history of the band, this is a good book. If you are a hardcore fan hoping to find out never-before-heard facts about James, you are out of luck.
4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Save Your Money Nov. 29 2010
By Amazon Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I have been a Metallica fan since I could discriminate the difference between pop and rock (25+ years). I love Metallica, especially James Hetfield's musical and Lyrical abilities. This book adds NOTHING to the Metallica story or that of James Hetfield. Anyone familiar marginally with the band can readily access the facts in this book. No surprises here. If you watch Some Kind of Monster and Behind the Music, you have as much insight as this guy does. The most annoying thing in the book is not the facts and story, it's the album reviews. Why would an author subject a reader to their irrelevant opinions of each album, track for track. The writer comes off as a want to be music critic with absolutely no understanding of music. He is honest as his opinions are not always glowing, but this guy comes off like someone that was wounded by the band's evolution from the Black album era through St. Anger. Whether he likes it or not should be kept out of the narrative, as it is useless. If a non-fan reads this book, it is written as if to guide them through what they should or should not listen to. Art is meant to be taken in for each individual to decide what he or she thinks about it. I just think it's juvenile the way it is written. I wish I could get my money back. I honestly think someone else could do a better job.

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