February 2015 Book Reviews

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1965: The Most Revolutionary Year in Music
Andrew Grant Jackson
Thomas Dunne Books
Street: 02.03
Andrew Grant Jackson (Still the Greatest: The Essential Songs of The Beatles’ Solo Careers) beautifully illustrates the overwhelming changes that music, counterculture and politics defined in 1965. Largely, this year-long journey is seen through the experiences felt both existentially and internallly through the inspirations of The Beatles. Jackson takes care to analyze these great effects through the exploration of drugs like LSD and their influence on the creative world. This book also investigates the style of cultural relationships that surrounded the British Invasion, the rise of soul music and the reactions surrounding the charged race issues that characterized the struggles of the decade. He further takes time to explain the meaning behind classic songs like The Beatles’ “Help!,” “Barry McGuire’s “Eve Of Destruction” and The Rolling Stones’ “(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction,” using them to explain their significant pop-cultural relevance for their era. Though Jackson’s breakdown of events is not limited to just The Beatles, he clearly makes the iconic group the epicenter of all that goes on in the book. While this is a lighter read, it does well in explaining the end of a cultural innocence through the events surrounding a profound year in pop culture history. –Nick Kuzmack

Little Fish: A Memoir From A Different Kind of Year
Ramsey Beyer
Zest Books
Street: 09.03.13
Aspiring artist Ramsey Beyer leaves her small town of Paw-Paw, Mich., to attend art school in Baltimore. This comic is a comprehensive autobiographical document compiled 10 years later detailing that first year away from all things familiar. This hardcover edition brings together her collection of old zines, high school livejournal entries and obsessive-compulsive lists with new narrative comics to fill in the gaps. Nostalgia takes over while reading because it’s an interactive experience of being a hopeful and stressed 18-year-old. A school of little punk and hardcore fish becomes her new clique and we dive into a refreshing and extremely personal journey from a privileged, yet humble home to being on her own. Little Fish provides the backstory to Beyer’s online comic project “Year One” on everydaypants.com. The mixture of DIY storytelling with typewritten notes-to-self and scanned lists about scars and collecting knickknacks is captivating as it’s an invited revealing instead of invasive investigation into someone’s life. It’s authentic and pretty tame as far as trauma goes for being 18. Overall, it’s light reading and relatable to anyone who’s been or plans on moving away from home, especially girls in their teenage years. –Taylor Hoffman

Living Healthy and Enjoying Life
Maurice Baker M.D.
Street: 09.14.14
“If it’s going to be me it’s up to me” is the slogan and credo of Maurice Baker’s Living Healthy and Enjoying Life. The book serves as a self-help guide infused with 50 years of Baker’s hands-on experience and referenced medical facts. The book can be read two ways. You can read it from front to back like a traditional book or locate your specific areas of concern in the table of contents and go right in and jump around however you like. Baker’s writing style keeps the book engaging and sets it apart from most medical readings. He includes many examples from his own life and career that give a personal feel to the book. He genuinely cares about his audience and wants them to improve, as the book encourages the reader to stay the course and commit to its suggested lifestyle changes. One of the stronger points in the book is its frankness about each subject and how it doesn’t over-word the reader with information. Baker presents the facts and doesn’t waste the reader’s time with opinions and hearsay. I highly recommend the book and encourage anyone looking to make positive changes about themselves to read it. –Benjamin Tilton