“Sam Smith: The Biography” by Joe Allan

Book Review | 3/5 stars | Genre – Biography

I think I can honestly say that this is the final book in my pile of books I got at Christmas! Anyway, I’ve always had a soft spot for Sam Smith, I think his songs are absolutely beautiful and I’ll never forget seeing him in concert with my mum. So it really seemed apt that I read a bit more into his life.

Sam Smith has massive crossover appeal, with his album going gold or platinum all across the world and his touching honesty about loneliness, love and his own sexuality coming through both in his music and his interviews to win him fans of all ages and genders. (Synopsis from Goodreads)

My initial thoughts…

As I have said before, I’m not one to really read biographies / autobiographies, but I am making an effort to read more. With this one, I was a bit confused. It was super interesting finding out more about Sam’s life, but it kept meandering into talking about other people who I didn’t have any particular interest in. This book was one I read while I ate my cereal in the morning, it made for a good light read to keep my occupied for a couple weeks.

Favourite moments…

  • Interesting life: I hadn’t really given much thought into Sam Smith’s actual life so it was quite nice to read about how he grew up and moved into the music industry. There were parts of his life that made him seem just a little bit more relatable.
  • Watching it all unfold: having followed Smith’s music since his first release with Disclosure, it was fun to watch how the song was created and how it evidently paved the way for the rest of his career.

Where could it improve…

At the end of the day, I didn’t actually finish the book. Maybe I’ll go back and finish the rest one day, but for now I just need a break. I’ve kept it at 3/5 as I’m not a fan of complete negative reviews, and I also happened to enjoy the parts of the book that I did get through. There were just times when it felt like the author had written the biography by using facts from Google; there never seemed to be much heart in what was written, as if he hadn’t even met Sam Smith. There was also a moment where it detailed Sam Smith’s childhood, where he seemed relatively wll-off, but tried to maintain that it was a life experienced by everyone, to me (relatively middle class), that he had a very privelidged life.

In conclusion….

I’ll get round to finish the rest of the book when I feel like it, but I don’t think I’ll look into buying the Adele biography. There were parts I enjoyed, but that was only based on my genuine interest in Smith’s life. Maybe I just prefer autobiographies, it feels better to read when its actually the person writing about their life (even if it might be a ghost writer).


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