Saturday, February 13, 2010

Beautiful Mess: The Story of Diamond Rio by Diamond Rio with Tom Roland

Beautiful Mess is a beautifully written biography about the messy history of the band, Diamond Rio. Tom Roland assists the Country band in telling the details of their years together. A common theme throughout the book is unity and commitment within and to Diamond Rio. This is proven repeatedly through the course of their 20 years together and the band tributes their longevity to these two qualities.

The book begins with Diamond Rio in the middle of a crisis that jeopardizes their careers in 2005. The first chapters recount the days leading up to each member joining the group. While this is a key element in the story, it is a bit tedious. There is a lot of music industry lingo, places and people. With an overabundance of names and people with the same first name it was difficult, at best, to keep everyone straight in my mind. Thanks to Roland’s writing style, this setting-the-stage section is fast-paced. He leads the reader through quickly and keeps the reader focused on the plot.

Each band member has a chapter devoted to telling his personal story. This portion of Beautiful Mess is slower reading but transforms each man from a superstar into a real human. Later in the book an update is given of their current personal lives, which gives readers a chance to learn how the band members grew from the struggles they encountered professionally.

Beautiful Mess is a good choice, even if you do not like Country Music. Avid biography readers will enjoy Beautiful Mess because of the multiple storylines—the band’s story and the individual stories. People who know the music industry well will enjoy making connections with the people and places in Beautiful Mess. And, of course, Beautiful Mess is a good book for those who simply want the inside scoop on the life of celebrities.

I received a complimentary copy of Beautiful Mess: The Story of Diamond Rio from Thomas Nelson Publishers as a participant in their book review blogger program.

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