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Predictably, her most wonderful gift ends up being her son. But nothing else is predictable in this story. I really enjoyed living vicariously through her story for a few days. It's worth ignoring the many typos and just focusing on the romance and wild times. Jun 07, Lori rated it really liked it Shelves: memoir. I had never heard of Catherine James before reading this book, but I was hooked after reading her opening description of a luncheon with the world's ugliest transvestiteher father.

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Her childhood was very Dickisonian and priviledged at the same time, and her teenage and young adult years included being part of the lives of many famous rockers although she isn't an arrogant name dropper. Great read for any fans of 70s rockers, for sure!! Aug 02, Jennifer rated it it was amazing.

I loved everything about it Mar 07, Lisa added it Shelves: , memoirs. Loved the writing style. A very emotional memoir of a very intriguing life. Catherine James had amazing experiences and also a lot of unfortunate ones. Pretty jealous that she got to spend time with Bob Dylan most jealous , Loved the writing style.

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That's just enviable. This woman seems to be very sweet and I quite enjoyed reading about her life. I thought it was sweet how she wrote about most people with adoration. She didn't come across as bitter about anything, even when people treated her poorly. She didn't even seem bitter about being abused by her mother when she was a child. Definitely an interesting read for anyone who loves anything to do with that beautiful time when music was amazing and inspired people to just do crazy things like run away from home or in this case, an orphanage to be part of the scene.

This woman definitely met a lot of amazing people on her journey. I enjoyed this after a long self-imposed reading break. Ended too abruptly for me but still up my alley. Dec 11, Glorianne Roccanova rated it really liked it.

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I really like to read memoirs Apr 27, SouthWestZippy rated it did not like it Shelves: nonfiction , did-not-finish. Had enough so stopped reading on page Ugg it is just over the top drama that is makes the book questionable.


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Favorite of the Groupie Books Easy, engaging read. When it was over I still wanted more. James is an extremely resilient woman and seems to have weathered her tragic childhood with grace and without the narcissism and emotional instability of other muses such as Bebe Buell and Patti Boyd. Jun 03, Lisa Petty rated it it was amazing. If you are nosy and starstruck, you will love this. Also, if you are an abusive parent, this will make you feel good about yourself.

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Dec 07, Olivia rated it liked it. The writing was repetitive but I really enjoyed the story! Feb 22, Natalie rated it really liked it. Made me miss England terribly! Loved the stories of a chaotic, nomadic and music filled life! Aug 04, Rachel rated it liked it. Sep 21, Connie rated it it was amazing Shelves: own-it , music , bios , hippie-era. This was a very engaging story about a woman who started life in a horribly abused setting. It goes on to how she had survived in her life and all of her interesting experiences with a "Murphy's Law" type of life back in the 60's and onward.

Her stories range from meeting Bob Dylan at an early age, to meeting Denny Laine and having a son by him, to partying with many of the well known and famous rockers of the 60's and 70's to her affair with Jimmy Page like most every girl who knew him then I th This was a very engaging story about a woman who started life in a horribly abused setting. Her stories range from meeting Bob Dylan at an early age, to meeting Denny Laine and having a son by him, to partying with many of the well known and famous rockers of the 60's and 70's to her affair with Jimmy Page like most every girl who knew him then I think, lol , failed marriages and more.


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I could definitely empathize with her in many of her circumstances as many held true for me too, in a very eerily way. It appears she was able to purge herself of many of her emotional demons through writing this story and I'm happy for her. I really enjoyed the read, my only complaint is I wish she had gone into much more detail about some of her life and relationships. The book read like journal or a Cliff-Notes version of a potentially great biography.

I hope she writes more. Where Miss P's story is an exciting, light read about a happy, free-spirited girl who finds herself in the center of the rock and roll cosmos of the 's, Catherine's story is one about true survival.

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She was born unto a horrible, abusive mother and was left to her own devices at such a tender age. The circumstances were so dire that she made a decision to go out and find her own way because she felt that anything was better than the way she was living. Like Pamela, she met some very colorful now legendary figures who would make a huge impact on her life but she had to claw her way through some very hard circumstances just to retain some semblance of sanity and control over her life.

She, like her friend Miss P, is a woman I would love to sit down with and just listen to her tell her story! What an interesting, compelling read! You won't be disappointed with this memoir! Nov 15, C rated it really liked it. Not a perfect book, but a compelling one. I was expecting a juicy, light, gossip-filled book by one of the most infamous groupies ever to grace the Sunset Strip. Instead I got a sad and fascinating memoir about an unusual and difficult childhood. The parts about Catherine's relationship with her mother are raw and feel very truthful.

It's hard to read about the abuse she endured as a child.

Dandelion : Memoir of a Free Spirit

Once Catherine leaves home with inspiration and help from a young Bob Dylan , the book becomes a little l Not a perfect book, but a compelling one. Once Catherine leaves home with inspiration and help from a young Bob Dylan , the book becomes a little less compelling.

Her stories about Eric Clapton, Jimmy Page, and many others are interesting, but I found myself more interested in the things that were glossed over -- even relationships with husbands, for example, sometimes take up only a few pages. In place of the handsome, he-man race-car driver that I remembered stood an unknown, eerie entity.


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The sweet, musty odor reminded me of crumpled perfumed tissues mixed with cherry LifeSavers. As we sat down, he crossed his bony nylon-clad legs and daintily folded his large hands in front of him. As he explained how the doctor nipped off his private parts and constructed a new vagina, I was completely lost in his shocking transformation. He was wearing artificial, spiky, long eyelashes with iridescent blue eye shadow. He had lined his pale blue eyes with black liner and painted on the old-fashioned fishtails curling up at the ends.

Dramatic, heavy brown eyebrows scrawled down to his temples, and pasty pancake foundation gave his complexion a dull, deathlike pallor. His lips were stained in a blaze of scarlet, and silver hoop earrings dangled from his large earlobes. I noticed that his gold Rolex had been replaced with the smaller female version, and feminine rings that I recognized as belonging to his late wife, Loren, were squeezed onto his swollen fingers.

He held onto a fifties-style red handbag and wore matching red pumps with one wonky heel. More strange was seeing my dad in full female regalia. He was wearing a fancy knit ensemble with a short, slim-fit skirt that showcased his stick-straight legs.