ISBN 9781440635168 | 384 pages | 24 Jul 2008 | Tarcher | 18 - AND UP
Summary of Society's Child Summary of Society's Child Reviews for Society's Child An Excerpt from Society's Child
Janis Ian was catapulted into the spotlight in 1966 at the age of fifteen, when her soul-wrenching song “Society’s Child” became a hit. An intimate portrait of an interracial relationship, “Society’s Child” climbed the charts despite the fact that many radio stations across the country refused to play it because of its controversial subject matter. But this was only the beginning of a long and illustrious career. In this fascinating memoir of her more than forty years in the music business, Ian chronicles how she did drugs with Jimi Hendrix, went shopping for Grammy clothes with Janis Joplin, and sang with Mel Tormé—all the while never ceasing to create unforgettable music.
In 1975, Ian’s legendary “At Seventeen” earned two Grammy awards and five nominations. Her next two albums brought her worldwide platinum hits. But after seven albums in as many years, she made a conscious decision to walk away from the often grueling music business. During this period, she struggled through a difficult marriage that ended with her then husband’s attempt to destroy her, and a sudden illness that very nearly cost her her life. The hiatus from music lasted for close to a decade until, in 1993, Ian returned with the release of the Grammy-nominated Breaking Silence. Now, as she moves gracefully into her fifth decade as a recording artist and writer, Ian continues to draw large audiences around the globe.
In Society’s Child, Janis Ian provides a relentlessly honest account of the successes and failures—and the hopes and dreams—of an extraordinary life.
“Society’s Child is the hugely readable autobiography of an artist who has lived through success and crushing hardship but knows that ‘you can’t sing and cry at the same time.’ Sing on!”
—O, The Oprah Magazine
“Painfully candid . . . hard to put down.”
—Booklist (starred review)
“A juicily entertaining look at an unusual life in show business."Downbeat yet oddly rollicking and compulsively readable.”
"Deftly written, the life experiences described by Janis Ian in this engaging memoir gives us a peek into the anatomy of a brilliant songwriter'
"One of life's greatest pleasures is a book that you simply can't put down—one that transports you from start to finish as it elevates, enlightens, engages and entertains. Janis Ian gives you all this in Society's Child."
"A splendid retelling of a major life! Janis Ian is a survivor, and her book is an illuminating and inspiring read."
"Janis Ian is at once larger-than-life and excruciatingly human. In Society's Child she describes great triumphs, devastating betrayals of every kind, and her extraordinary strength of spirit shines through every page."
"A book of surpassing clarity and truth."
—Orson Scott Card, author of Ender's Game
"I laughed, I ached, I wept, I cheered...and ultimately was totally taken by Janis Ian's honest and deeply moving autobiography: an insightful and courageous personal account of her musical, spiritual and emotional journey."
—Noel Paul Stookey, of Peter, Paul & Mary
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