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James Patterson by James Patterson: The Stories of My Life Paperback – Large Print, June 6, 2022
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“Damn near addictive. I loved it . . . that Patterson guy can write!” –Ron Howard
THE INSTANT #1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER—How did a kid whose dad lived in the poorhouse become the most successful storyteller in the world?
- On the morning he was born, he nearly died.
- His dad grew up in the Pogey– the Newburgh, New York, poorhouse.
- He worked at a mental hospital in Massachusetts, where he met the singer James Taylor and the poet Robert Lowell.
- While he toiled in advertising hell, James wrote the ad jingle line “I’m a Toys ‘R’ Us Kid.”
- He once watched James Baldwin and Norman Mailer square off to trade punches at a party.
- He’s only been in love twice. Both times are amazing.
- Dolly Parton once sang “Happy Birthday” to James over the phone. She calls him J.J., for Jimmy James.
James Patterson by James Patterson is the most anticipated memoir of 2022.
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“The book was damn near addictive. I loved it. Patterson recounts turning points and life-shaping lessons in short, riveting bursts that inform, entertain, and satisfy—then propel you into the next story. That Patterson guy can write!” ―Ron Howard
“James Patterson does it again. The master storyteller of our times takes us on a funny, poignant, and ultimately triumphant journey through his own life. If you are among the many millions of us who enjoy reading Patterson’s books, or if you haven’t discovered him yet, you’ll love reading this one too.”―Hillary Rodham Clinton
“I felt I was interviewing James Patterson under the highest permissible dose of sodium pentothal, the truth serum, for hours—and he spilled the whole story of his truly astonishing life and experiences and the absolute unlikelihood that he would become the best-selling fiction author of all time.”―Bob Woodward
About the Author
- Publisher : Little, Brown and Company; Large type / Large print edition (June 6, 2022)
- Language : English
- Paperback : 464 pages
- ISBN-10 : 0316445215
- ISBN-13 : 978-0316445214
- Item Weight : 14.4 ounces
- Dimensions : 5.5 x 1.5 x 8.3 inches
- Best Sellers Rank: #144,472 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
About the author
Reviewed in the United States on June 7, 2022
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Patterson starts by describing his “colloquial” writing style, and informing the reader that the rest of the book will be written in this very conversational matter-of-fact style. He then dives right in telling these short individual stories about his life; from working in a psych ward, to almost dying at birth, to being an altar boy. The stories aren't exactly in chronological order, but most are generally grouped into themes, like “mad men”, “name dropping”, and “love stories”.
Overall I really enjoyed reading this memoir. The format is unusual for this kind of book, but I think it really works for Patterson's writing style. He builds a comprehensive self portrait by telling one short story at a time, and adding in some humor along the way. Fans of his books will likely enjoy reading these interesting details about his remarkable life, and everyone can appreciate his ability to tell a good story.
Patterson’s life story is delivered to the reader… not in what I would call chapters… but what would be much more accurately described as “snippets”. The “snippets are approximately 1-4 pages in length. The dissertations are quick (as he said they would be… in a brief preamble by the author) and effectively hit the bull’s-eye of varied human emotions. Some make you laugh… some brings a mist to your eyes… some are simply educational on many fronts… some hit multiple targets.
From his early days in Newburgh, New York… he covers his childhood and unflinching descriptions… frailties… positives and negatives of his family… and Catholic School… and a burst of athletic pride over half-a-century later. And treating the reader like a friend or acquaintance… swears it’s true. Wanting your imaginary “wink-wink” acknowledgement of authenticity… before he spurts forward to the next biographical “snippet”. His almost lifelong love of writing… is pretty amazing… if you correctly clear your head of the accomplishments he’s world famous for now. The blind dedicated dream he kept alive while working totally unrelated jobs. It’s almost shocking what he accomplished in the “BIG-LEAGUE-MAD-MEN-ADVERTISING-WORLD-JUNGLE” at heavyweight ad agency J. Walter Thompson. While handling high pressure high dollar accounts such as Burger King (during the height of the “BURGER WARS”) and Ford Motor Company. Despite the stress and hours during those times… he had the self-imposed discipline… and an eye still on his ultimate dream of writing… and would write before work… during some skipped lunches… and in the middle of the night. The normal weak human frailty… that I admit I have at times and millions of other people have… though they may not admit it… is some form of jealousy… or believing it was “luck” when you view super-super-successful people like James Patterson… but that is no longer the case with me… because I now know he absolutely earned every ounce of success he has. He literally refused to ever let his lifelong dream die. And though ultra-successful in the game of true **MAD-MEN**… he refused to stop juggling his dream while he survived and flourished day to day!
Embedded within the biographical story telling are some great zinging intelligent one -liners. Such as when a mental patient at a mental hospital knocked himself unconscious by running full speed into protective glass… Patterson stated: “HE LEFT US FOR A MOMENT THERE, BLACKED OUT, MAYBE GONE TO HEAVEN FOR A SNEAK PREVIEW.” And sharing some inside industry acronyms regarding Ford: “FORD STOOD FOR “FOUND ON ROAD DEAD”… OR “FIX OR REPAIR DAILY.”
He can also make your heart ache when telling about one of the two great loves in his life Jane who died at thirty-nine years old from a brain tumor. As I am an extremely blessed nineteen-year brain tumor survivor… this powerful “snippet” didn’t hit me… it engulfed me.
Many times throughout this entertaining and educational book… Patterson utilizes the literary version of the way George Burns used to talk directly through the TV to the viewers with a wink of his eye… like it was you and him buddy! And that’s what the author does throughout. He also throws in some self-deprecating humor… and isn’t timid in hinting that you buy other products of his. Besides tidbits from the “Burger Wars”… and Ford frolics.. you’ll get an insider’s look at what it’s like to go on book tours… along with this bit of info former President Clinton told Jim when they toured together… “THE ATTENTION SPAN OF HUMANS IS EIGHT SECONDS… THE ATTENTION SPAN OF BUTTERFLIES IS NINE SECONDS.”
Well… I guess that’s why this book is written in short eight second snippets… I HAVE ENOUGH MONEY TO PAY FOR THIS BOOK… BUT THE AVERAGE BUTTERFLY DOESN’T!
Top reviews from other countries
Lots of tales from before he was a famous author - being an expert marketeer has certainly helped him achieve record book sales.
This is a book of stories, in not particular order really. He jumps around his life, telling stories of what he has done, people he has met and how he became the world best selling writer. I enjoyed reading about his time as an advertising executive, his school days, his experience at Woodstock and his lack of confidence at becoming a fiction writer. He talks about his friendship with former President, Bill Clinton and their writing collaboration. It was written in his usual conversational style, with short chapters which makes it a very fast read - just like his fiction novels.
This is a must read for fans of the great man's books. Absolutely recommend. All the stars