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Room Full of Mirrors: A Biography of Jimi Hendrix

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Now in paperback, the national bestselling biography of American musical icon Jimi Hendrix It has been more than thirty-five years since Jimi Hendrix died, but his music and spirit are still very much alive for his fans everywhere. Charles R. Cross vividly recounts the life of Hendrix, from his difficult childhood and adolescence in Seattle through his incredible rise to Now in paperback, the national bestselling biography of American musical icon Jimi Hendrix It has been more than thirty-five years since Jimi Hendrix died, but his music and spirit are still very much alive for his fans everywhere. Charles R. Cross vividly recounts the life of Hendrix, from his difficult childhood and adolescence in Seattle through his incredible rise to celebrity in London's swinging sixties. It is the story of an outrageous life--with legendary tales of sex, drugs, and excess--while it also reveals a man who struggled to accept his role as idol and who privately craved the kind of normal family life he never had. Using never-before-seen documents and private letters, and based on hundreds of interviews with those who knew Hendrix--many of whom had never before agreed to be interviewed--Room Full of Mirrors unlocks the vast mystery of one of music's most enduring legends.


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Now in paperback, the national bestselling biography of American musical icon Jimi Hendrix It has been more than thirty-five years since Jimi Hendrix died, but his music and spirit are still very much alive for his fans everywhere. Charles R. Cross vividly recounts the life of Hendrix, from his difficult childhood and adolescence in Seattle through his incredible rise to Now in paperback, the national bestselling biography of American musical icon Jimi Hendrix It has been more than thirty-five years since Jimi Hendrix died, but his music and spirit are still very much alive for his fans everywhere. Charles R. Cross vividly recounts the life of Hendrix, from his difficult childhood and adolescence in Seattle through his incredible rise to celebrity in London's swinging sixties. It is the story of an outrageous life--with legendary tales of sex, drugs, and excess--while it also reveals a man who struggled to accept his role as idol and who privately craved the kind of normal family life he never had. Using never-before-seen documents and private letters, and based on hundreds of interviews with those who knew Hendrix--many of whom had never before agreed to be interviewed--Room Full of Mirrors unlocks the vast mystery of one of music's most enduring legends.

30 review for Room Full of Mirrors: A Biography of Jimi Hendrix

  1. 4 out of 5

    Adam Crossley

    I'll proudly stick my hand up and admit to being a bit obsessed with Jimi Hendrix. He was just such a amazing spirit. He descended, blew up what everyone thought a guitar could do and then vanished into the mist. In the mean time he did a lot of drugs and lived a life that is almost unfathomable. This book details the messy chaos that swirled around him in a fun and easy read. I found it difficult to put down, but again, I'm a huge Hendrix fan. I wouldn't necessarily recommend it to everybody, but I'll proudly stick my hand up and admit to being a bit obsessed with Jimi Hendrix. He was just such a amazing spirit. He descended, blew up what everyone thought a guitar could do and then vanished into the mist. In the mean time he did a lot of drugs and lived a life that is almost unfathomable. This book details the messy chaos that swirled around him in a fun and easy read. I found it difficult to put down, but again, I'm a huge Hendrix fan. I wouldn't necessarily recommend it to everybody, but if you got some "Voodoo Chile" in you, go get this book!

  2. 5 out of 5

    npaw

    I grew up riding other people’s horses in the vacant lot next to Jimi’s dad’s house. I heard all the neighborhood stories and met all the people at parties who claimed to have seen Jimi play back in the day or who say they went to school with him (it’s amazing how many people say they graduated with Jimi when he never graduated from high school. Not to mention the fact that Jimi never lived in this particular house with his dad and didn’t even attend the same schools as these people). I met I grew up riding other people’s horses in the vacant lot next to Jimi’s dad’s house. I heard all the neighborhood stories and met all the people at parties who claimed to have seen Jimi play back in the day or who say they went to school with him (it’s amazing how many people say they graduated with Jimi when he never graduated from high school. Not to mention the fact that Jimi never lived in this particular house with his dad and didn’t even attend the same schools as these people). I met Cross at a reading given by my former instructor David Shields. I had not read A Room Full of Mirrors at this point (I’m not sure it was even released yet). I mentioned a short story I wrote that was loosely based on something that happened in the neighborhood that was never public knowledge. Cross not only knew the story I was writing about but gave me the amazing details of the story that came after my story. Sadly, I think Cross knows Hendrix better than Jimi’s family ever did. His writing is a perfect balance of someone who is a good story teller but has the journalistic approach and particulars that make you feel like you are a part of the scene. I have to admit despite knowing how the book would end, I found myself wishing Cross would somehow bring me to a different place. One of the few times I would have been happy to follow.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Cwn_annwn_13

    Just finished reading. 4 out 5 stars. I read a different Hendrix biography when I was a teenager in the 80s and have always loved and listened to his music but as far as his life its been a while. New things I learned or had my memory refreshed on. His Parents were not good people and unfit Parents. Hendrix was one of these people that had no business drinking and caused problems for everyone including himself when he was drunk. He had black fans but overall was rejected in Harlem and the black Just finished reading. 4 out 5 stars. I read a different Hendrix biography when I was a teenager in the 80s and have always loved and listened to his music but as far as his life its been a while. New things I learned or had my memory refreshed on. His Parents were not good people and unfit Parents. Hendrix was one of these people that had no business drinking and caused problems for everyone including himself when he was drunk. He had black fans but overall was rejected in Harlem and the black audience who thought he was weird. Years later when he was a major star fresh off his iconic Woodstock performance he did a free benefit show in Harlem for a political organization and only 400 people showed up. They booed and threw things at the stage. He was embraced by the white hippy types in Grenwich Village and had to go to London to really gain acceptance where he was fawned over by all the biggest rock stars of that time before he made it big. He was co managed by a former British Intelligence agent who took him to London where a still unknown Hendrix to a large degree re invented himself and was instantly rubbing elbows with famous rock stars and wealthy hipsters. David McGowan readers read into that what you will.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Sarah

    This book was extremely amazing. It begins with Jimi's life as a young child, and builds up to his life as an adult. It's obvious that Cross REALLY did his research because all of his connections who he interviewed were extremely personal, and each of them had a close relationship with Jimi. The most interesting parts for me entailed the people that Jimi met along the road to stardom, and how Cross just captured his life so well. There were also some parts that even made me chuckle out loud This book was extremely amazing. It begins with Jimi's life as a young child, and builds up to his life as an adult. It's obvious that Cross REALLY did his research because all of his connections who he interviewed were extremely personal, and each of them had a close relationship with Jimi. The most interesting parts for me entailed the people that Jimi met along the road to stardom, and how Cross just captured his life so well. There were also some parts that even made me chuckle out loud because there's a hint of humor in the writing which is also full of wittiness. There's no doubt that Cross prepared for years before his biography got published, because the encounters throughout the book are much too personal to have been gathered over the course of less than 3 years. And, of course it's no surprise, Jimi does die. Haha.. But that part of Hendrix's beautiful story is captured so intimately that you feel like you're right smack dab in the middle of it all! Such a great tribute to one of the best musicians of our all time. Long live Jimi.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Carol Storm

    Beautiful, compassionate, well-researched, this biography of Jimi Hendrix belongs on the shelf of any fan of classic rock. Charles R. Cross captures all the different sides of Jimi, arguably the most complex of the great Sixties rock stars. Blues man, mystic, science fiction visionary, flamboyant showman, Jimi Hendrix comes alive in these pages like never before. Moreover, the heart-wrenching chapters on Jimi's childhood in Seattle add new insight to his tragic end. I would recommend this book Beautiful, compassionate, well-researched, this biography of Jimi Hendrix belongs on the shelf of any fan of classic rock. Charles R. Cross captures all the different sides of Jimi, arguably the most complex of the great Sixties rock stars. Blues man, mystic, science fiction visionary, flamboyant showman, Jimi Hendrix comes alive in these pages like never before. Moreover, the heart-wrenching chapters on Jimi's childhood in Seattle add new insight to his tragic end. I would recommend this book to anyone who loves good music and legendary artists.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Todd Martin

    Room Full of Mirrors is a well researched and fair account of the life of Jimi Hendrix. Although clearly a fan, Cross doesn't shy away from the negative side of Hendrix, which included drug use (surprise?) and violence. More than 40 years after his death, Hendrix is still considered one of the most innovative, talented and influential guitar players of all time. It's remarkable to think that the entirety of his solo career spanned only 4.5 years.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Prince

    Very revealing! Being such an awesome musician as he is, it is no surprise there are countless books and articles discussing Jimi Hendrix's musical legacy. But that also means we rarely strumble upon a book or an article which touch on his personal side, especially when he rarely give any details about it in interviews, as though the topic was too painful for him to touch. This book is one of those rare gems which made an admirable attempt to elaborate various aspects of Jimi's bleak and intense Very revealing! Being such an awesome musician as he is, it is no surprise there are countless books and articles discussing Jimi Hendrix's musical legacy. But that also means we rarely strumble upon a book or an article which touch on his personal side, especially when he rarely give any details about it in interviews, as though the topic was too painful for him to touch. This book is one of those rare gems which made an admirable attempt to elaborate various aspects of Jimi's bleak and intense childhood and how it might had contributed to and influence his latter life as a flamboyant musician. Definitely a good read!

  8. 4 out of 5

    Monica

    This is a wonderfully researched and deeply moving look at the amazing, incredible Jimi. From poverty to greatness, he lived in two divergent ends of the spectrum during his prolific, sadly short life. He gave so much, bringing blues and rock to new heights. He was truly a legend. This book shows Jimi as a real man, with faults and insecurities. A man who accomplished greatness in his short, tumultuous life. This biography gives a deeper insight and appreciation of all aspects of Jimi's life. It This is a wonderfully researched and deeply moving look at the amazing, incredible Jimi. From poverty to greatness, he lived in two divergent ends of the spectrum during his prolific, sadly short life. He gave so much, bringing blues and rock to new heights. He was truly a legend. This book shows Jimi as a real man, with faults and insecurities. A man who accomplished greatness in his short, tumultuous life. This biography gives a deeper insight and appreciation of all aspects of Jimi's life. It was a sad life yet his musical genius will undoubtedly live forever.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Scott Brook

    Having been a huge fan of Jimi and his music over the years, I had read a few books on his career and downfall. However, I had to admit that I did not know very much about his personal life and his early years. Room Full of Mirrors exposed for me the young Hendrix and all the hardships he endured at such a young age. It's amazing that he made it through his childhood, to be honest. Extremely poor and extremely neglected by his parents, Jimi was a success if for any other reason, enduring these Having been a huge fan of Jimi and his music over the years, I had read a few books on his career and downfall. However, I had to admit that I did not know very much about his personal life and his early years. Room Full of Mirrors exposed for me the young Hendrix and all the hardships he endured at such a young age. It's amazing that he made it through his childhood, to be honest. Extremely poor and extremely neglected by his parents, Jimi was a success if for any other reason, enduring these tribulations. When his success started to take off in Europe, Jimi just never seemed to find a comfortable place to fit in. The United States shunned him for many years. The white population looked at him differently due to racial stereotyping. The black community never fully accepted him into their fold as they thought he was selling out his race. Many fellow musicians were jealous of his talents. He was taken advantage of by his managers and record contracts. Through all of this, Jimi never was comfortable in this role as a pop/rock star. He succumbed to the same tropes that most in this position do. The drugs, the women, the self destructive nature, etc. All resulting in a tragic story line where a gifted star never reached his potential. Mr. Cross' book is a must read for any of you that were fans of Jimi and his music. Even those on the fence, this book opens you up into the culture of the time and let's you relive the rise and fall of a tremendous talent. Here's hoping that you found your roomful of mirrors, Jimi!

  10. 5 out of 5

    Kusaimamekirai

    Oh Jimi. It’s probably not well known but growing up in Seattle, Washington, Jimi Hendrix was a painfully shy kid with abusive and alcoholic parents. It’s something he never really shook despite the flamboyant outfits, guitar pyrotechnics, groupies piled up outside his door, and reckless drug use. When he had moments of quiet, admittedly a rare time from his career taking off in London in his early 20’s to his death at 27, he would be at times part introspective part despondent. He had created Oh Jimi. It’s probably not well known but growing up in Seattle, Washington, Jimi Hendrix was a painfully shy kid with abusive and alcoholic parents. It’s something he never really shook despite the flamboyant outfits, guitar pyrotechnics, groupies piled up outside his door, and reckless drug use. When he had moments of quiet, admittedly a rare time from his career taking off in London in his early 20’s to his death at 27, he would be at times part introspective part despondent. He had created a character (guitar burning wild man) that brought him the success he craved only to discover that it trapped him in a gilded cage making him captive to the expectations of everyone around him. There were times were I just wanted give the man a hug and tell him it was gonna be alright but perhaps this is how it was meant to be. He lived more lives in 6 short years than most do in a lifetime. He was incandescence in human form. An angel, a shaman, a shy little kid, a lover, kind, a jerk, an outrageously talented musician, and so much more. Had his life story gone a different way perhaps we aren’t talking about him like we are today. In this sense, he was a human sacrifice to his music. Hyperbole? Perhaps. But Jimi’s whole life was hyperbole. He knew no other way. He almost seems unreal. As if no human being could have lived a life like this. But he did. And the world should be grateful to him for it.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Adam

    Room Full of Mirrors is a really compelling and inspiring biography of one of the most fascinating musicians to ever live. Charles R. Cross describes the life of one of the greatest rock and roll artists to live. The struggles of living the rock and roll life, and surviving on sex, drugs, and rock n' roll. Not only does it describe the life of Jimi Hendix, but it also describes the hippie movement of the 60's, and growing up as a black child in the 40's and the prejudice against african Room Full of Mirrors is a really compelling and inspiring biography of one of the most fascinating musicians to ever live. Charles R. Cross describes the life of one of the greatest rock and roll artists to live. The struggles of living the rock and roll life, and surviving on sex, drugs, and rock n' roll. Not only does it describe the life of Jimi Hendix, but it also describes the hippie movement of the 60's, and growing up as a black child in the 40's and the prejudice against african americans. The book really picks up when Jimi first starts playing the guitar, and you get to see the inspirations behind his songs and playing style.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Miranda Elizeabeth

    This is an unbiased, well researched and documented biography of the greatest guitarist in rock and roll history. We all have heard stories about Jimi Hendrix, but this bio puts everything into perspective. From his youth being dirt poor and tossed around to aunts and foster parents and friends to becoming the highest paid musician in the world after years of playing the guitar obsessively and on the Chittlin' Circuit, JH was quite the success story. Unfortunately he couldn't escape the room This is an unbiased, well researched and documented biography of the greatest guitarist in rock and roll history. We all have heard stories about Jimi Hendrix, but this bio puts everything into perspective. From his youth being dirt poor and tossed around to aunts and foster parents and friends to becoming the highest paid musician in the world after years of playing the guitar obsessively and on the Chittlin' Circuit, JH was quite the success story. Unfortunately he couldn't escape the room full of mirrors that tormented his soul. Excellent read for anyone who loves music including the blues and rock and roll, as well as the psychedelic rock era.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Anfrbr

    This book is so awesome.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Alison

    A well written, informative biography of Jimi Hendrix. We had just watched "Woodstock" again which left me wanting to know about the life of a very talented guitar player. The book did not disappoint. Jimi came from a troubled home which set the tone for the rest of his young life. His parent's relationship with one another and his mother (whom he loved) leaving the home and leaving Jimi and his brother's care to the father (who was a role model of the wrong ilk) provided the rocky foundation A well written, informative biography of Jimi Hendrix. We had just watched "Woodstock" again which left me wanting to know about the life of a very talented guitar player. The book did not disappoint. Jimi came from a troubled home which set the tone for the rest of his young life. His parent's relationship with one another and his mother (whom he loved) leaving the home and leaving Jimi and his brother's care to the father (who was a role model of the wrong ilk) provided the rocky foundation for Jimi's life. Once he discovered what a guitar could do, he was thwarted by the lack of funds and so contented himself to play guitar with a broom (the first air guitar, perhaps). Jimi endured years of emotional and physical abuse by his father; he had siblings that were given away; and he was always poor. Once Jimi obtained a guitar, he wouldn't let go of it, even sleeping with it on his chest while in the army. There are so may factors that lead to his early death. He never had a place of his own to sleep, had little to eat, slept with more ladies than one can count, and, found drugs. No one ever said the life of a musician was easy and Jimi's life proved that axiom true. It was interesting to see how Jimi's life crossed with so many other musicians of the time, how he enjoyed the music of Frank Sinatra, and how money, once made, slipped through his fingers. Jimi's mother was buried in a pauper's grave, ironically, Jimi was buried but 200 yards away - but her grave was never tended to and the family did not know how close Jimi was in death to the mother he loved in life.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Jason

    I really need a better Hendrix biography to read. Can someone get on that? This book suffered from what a lot of biographies do. It was written by someone who does not necessarily appreciate the subject, nor is he a good journalist. There is little to no detailed discussion of music, and there is no analysis at all, which is, right or wrong, one of the main aspects of a major musician's life I want to read about. There are many goofy factual errors, names mis-spelled, that sort of thing, and the I really need a better Hendrix biography to read. Can someone get on that? This book suffered from what a lot of biographies do. It was written by someone who does not necessarily appreciate the subject, nor is he a good journalist. There is little to no detailed discussion of music, and there is no analysis at all, which is, right or wrong, one of the main aspects of a major musician's life I want to read about. There are many goofy factual errors, names mis-spelled, that sort of thing, and the author also had the odd habit of dropping in statements that made me go, HUH!?. For instance, at around page 230 he mentions offhandedly that Jimi's eyesight was so poor he could never have gotten a driver's license. After reading a man's life story I would have thought that might have come up. He made a lot of statements like this that gave me the impression that I had missed something. If you set out to write a book like this I don't think you should necessarily be a Superfan of the subject, but you should at least come off in the text like you're familiar with it, and you should definitely apply a journalistic rigor to the research. I just don't feel like either of these aspects are to be found in this book. If you want to know who Jimi was dating then this is the book for you, although the girl's name is likely to be mis-spelled, if you want to know more about the music, don't bother looking here.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Tom

    This felt like a long article from "Uncut" rather than a book. Lots of details, some period colour, and some anecdotes I hadn't heard before : but very little scene-setting, history, analysis, and also not much show of enthusiasm for the subject. As a comparison, Charles Shaar Murray's Hendrix bio Crosstown Traffic: Jimi Hendrix and Post-War Pop is more breathless but works hard to place Hendrix in a context of Robert Johnson, Muddy Waters, Miles Davis, Segovia. Worth it for the opening This felt like a long article from "Uncut" rather than a book. Lots of details, some period colour, and some anecdotes I hadn't heard before : but very little scene-setting, history, analysis, and also not much show of enthusiasm for the subject. As a comparison, Charles Shaar Murray's Hendrix bio Crosstown Traffic: Jimi Hendrix and Post-War Pop is more breathless but works hard to place Hendrix in a context of Robert Johnson, Muddy Waters, Miles Davis, Segovia. Worth it for the opening anecdote.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Bob Colwick

    A great biography of Hendrix, it delves into some areas of Jimi's life (including him being a fanboy of Bob Dylan) and presents the legendary musician as a human as opposed to the psychadelic shaman that is the default setting of most articles/books written about him. Highly recommended for fans of music, guitarists, the sixties, and pop culture.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Jon Nakapalau

    Jimi Hendrix really did live in the reflection of others: what everyone wanted (or needed) him to be became crushing to his soul even as he became a legend. Fair and balanced look at this little understood icon.

  19. 5 out of 5

    karen reyes

    Loved this book. It is a true account of Jimi's life, from the beginning to the very end. This book examines his passion for music; he slept with his guitar in his early years. The author takes you on a journey of Jimi Hendrix the musician, the son, the lover the partier and the brother. He seemed like a really good guy, and was truly talented. He weaved through different bands before becoming "Jimi Hendrix", eventually resenting the mainstream perception of who he was as an artist. He got tired Loved this book. It is a true account of Jimi's life, from the beginning to the very end. This book examines his passion for music; he slept with his guitar in his early years. The author takes you on a journey of Jimi Hendrix the musician, the son, the lover the partier and the brother. He seemed like a really good guy, and was truly talented. He weaved through different bands before becoming "Jimi Hendrix", eventually resenting the mainstream perception of who he was as an artist. He got tired of all of the gimmicks and expectations during his concerts, despite popular belief that he enjoyed these things (setting his guitar on fire, playing with his mouth, etc.) So sad that he died so early in his life, when he was receiving so much attention for his role as a musical artist. Drugs, drugs, drugs! And finally, I learned that there is a little Jimi Hendrix out there in the world somewhere today; the offspring of a fantastic and gifted artist. Amazing we don't hear about him.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Steve

    Generally speaking I really enjoyed this book....I am a hater of biographies but because I am a massive Hendrix fan I decided to give this a go. The amount of facts in this book is incredible and I can only imagine the amount of work the author went to, to gather up all that detail. But this maybe a potential problem for some, the author laid out the facts about Hendrix without dramatising it too much. For me this wasn't an issue since I knew all of Hendrix's songs I enjoyed getting the facts Generally speaking I really enjoyed this book....I am a hater of biographies but because I am a massive Hendrix fan I decided to give this a go. The amount of facts in this book is incredible and I can only imagine the amount of work the author went to, to gather up all that detail. But this maybe a potential problem for some, the author laid out the facts about Hendrix without dramatising it too much. For me this wasn't an issue since I knew all of Hendrix's songs I enjoyed getting the facts behind them, I wasn't really interested on what else was going on at the time etc. The start of the book is also very interesting learning about Hendrix's early life and getting a feel for growing up as a young African-American in Seattle. Sorry first review so forgive me if it was rubbish. I think if you are Hendrix fan you will really get a lot out of the book, if not I think it will come across a bit clinical.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Rhonda

    Wow. What a STELLAR biography. It is both incredibly well written and so thoroughly researched. Sometimes biographies can be stilted and dry, but this book has been a real page-turner and I've learned SO much from it, not just about Jimi, but about the state of America (especially for African Americans) in the 1960s, the political/civil rights/socioeconomic issues of the times, the British "explosion" on the music scene, local music scenes of the times in general - Seattle, Memphis, Harlem, Wow. What a STELLAR biography. It is both incredibly well written and so thoroughly researched. Sometimes biographies can be stilted and dry, but this book has been a real page-turner and I've learned SO much from it, not just about Jimi, but about the state of America (especially for African Americans) in the 1960s, the political/civil rights/socioeconomic issues of the times, the British "explosion" on the music scene, local music scenes of the times in general - Seattle, Memphis, Harlem, London, Greenwich Village, the 'Chitlin Circuit'. It's been SUCH a well told tale! The author calls the book his "four-year, 325-interview effort to crack the code and to turn that black-light poster image into a portrait of a man." Well done, Charles Cross. Well done.

  22. 4 out of 5

    billy

    The best part of this book like all biographies is the beginning. It’s interesting to know what has happened to Jimi Hendrix in his early years. It’s good to know where he came from and the struggles he had to go through to reach stardom. It’s interesting to read about Jimi playing at small clubs in queens to going to London and playing while Eric Clapton (the best guitarist in history) was in-between set breaks. I liked this book because I like Jimi Hendrix. I enjoyed reading about a great The best part of this book like all biographies is the beginning. It’s interesting to know what has happened to Jimi Hendrix in his early years. It’s good to know where he came from and the struggles he had to go through to reach stardom. It’s interesting to read about Jimi playing at small clubs in queens to going to London and playing while Eric Clapton (the best guitarist in history) was in-between set breaks. I liked this book because I like Jimi Hendrix. I enjoyed reading about a great musician who accomplished so much in 27 short years.

  23. 5 out of 5

    John

    Okay,okay this is the best Hendrix biography, well researched and well-written, with a feeling for the man and his music. However, this book is so damned sad it gave me the willies for weeks on end. The thought of Jimi suffering the way he did HIS WHOLE LIFE was just too much for me to take. Such a towering talent and a man who so many loved so dearly and a man whose music reverberates through our culture so thoroughly and whose music I have unceasingly listened to for 44 years - his troubles as Okay,okay this is the best Hendrix biography, well researched and well-written, with a feeling for the man and his music. However, this book is so damned sad it gave me the willies for weeks on end. The thought of Jimi suffering the way he did HIS WHOLE LIFE was just too much for me to take. Such a towering talent and a man who so many loved so dearly and a man whose music reverberates through our culture so thoroughly and whose music I have unceasingly listened to for 44 years - his troubles as related in this book made me so sad.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Lemar

    Meticulous research makes for a clear look at this man who became a legend in his own brief time. Cross does not employ flashy prose to bring this flashy artist to life but is able to put us there in each phase of his life so that we understand (his take on) Jimi and the prevailing atmosphere in which he found himself. Written at the perfect moment (2005) when passions and legal wrangling had mostly subsided yet many of the protagonist were still around to be interviewed, Cross is the perfect Meticulous research makes for a clear look at this man who became a legend in his own brief time. Cross does not employ flashy prose to bring this flashy artist to life but is able to put us there in each phase of his life so that we understand (his take on) Jimi and the prevailing atmosphere in which he found himself. Written at the perfect moment (2005) when passions and legal wrangling had mostly subsided yet many of the protagonist were still around to be interviewed, Cross is the perfect writer, a fan but never a fanatic, to write Jimi's biography.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Rich Jonny's Son

    Room Full of Mirrors: A Biography of Jimi Hendrix (Paperback) by Charles R. Cross is all about Jimi Hendrix's life. His life a child to an adult. his main internal conflict is drugs. his main external conflict is he's dead. while reading this book i made a text-to-self connection. based on how i play guitar and so did Jimi. he also wasn't much of an athelete and neither am i i would give this book 5 out of five stars. this book is about the number one greatest guitar player of all time so this Room Full of Mirrors: A Biography of Jimi Hendrix (Paperback) by Charles R. Cross is all about Jimi Hendrix's life. His life a child to an adult. his main internal conflict is drugs. his main external conflict is he's dead. while reading this book i made a text-to-self connection. based on how i play guitar and so did Jimi. he also wasn't much of an athelete and neither am i i would give this book 5 out of five stars. this book is about the number one greatest guitar player of all time so this book has every thing. i would recomend this book to any one who is a fan of rock and roll.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Jeremy

    This is hands down the best biography I have ever read. Sometimes I find a biography taxing because at certain points, it is just a blast of dates and minor details. Charles Cross does a fantastic job of making an interesting read the whole way through. I learned oodles of information on Hendrix that I hadn't known before. Very informative. I rate this a 5!

  27. 5 out of 5

    Elionora

    This book was an amazing biography, it was definitely very well detailed and inspiring. It gave you insight on his early life and a more personal depth that can only paint Jimi Hendrix as a tragic and relateable artist. Charles R. Crosses uses interviews and research in a very beautiful account of a life that has marked the hearts of many fans across the world.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Joe Brunory

    a close look at the best guitarist we have ever seen and how he couldn' t shake the state of poverty he grew up with. Hendrix's unwillingness to take a vacation, to stop earning and spending money burnt him out. A genius on the guitar, chock full of talent, that original poor state of mind stole a full life for himself and his audience.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Jacki

    I have to admit I never thought Jimi Hendrix was "sexy" but after reading this book, I have changed my mind! Jimi was portrayed as a genuine person, caring, intuitive, and creative. I loved this book and was afraid after reading the Claption bio, it would be similar. No way! I found myself revisiting my Jimi hits to hear his voice again. Well written and a true American tragedy!

  30. 4 out of 5

    Ashley Teagle

    I called myself a fan of Jimi Hendrix before listening to this book but I realized as I got into it that I didn't really know much about Hendrix's background at all. This book made me feel like I got a very complete picture of Jimi--both the good and the bad. I knew very little about Jimi's home life and one criticism I have of this book is that I felt I didn't get such a balanced portrait of Jimi's parents. I can live with that because the book was really about Jimi anyway, but it would have I called myself a fan of Jimi Hendrix before listening to this book but I realized as I got into it that I didn't really know much about Hendrix's background at all. This book made me feel like I got a very complete picture of Jimi--both the good and the bad. I knew very little about Jimi's home life and one criticism I have of this book is that I felt I didn't get such a balanced portrait of Jimi's parents. I can live with that because the book was really about Jimi anyway, but it would have been nice to have gone deeper in their stories in order to more fully understand Jimi's. From what I did learn about Jimi's childhood, it was hard for me to feel like he should be held accountable for any of his actions. I was actually frustrated by the people around Jimi, such as the ex-girlfriend who would tip him on his side when he had taken too many drugs and needed to clear his airway. I struggled feeling like people around Jimi, even those closest to him, ultimately abandoned him. In other words, this book sucked me in a very emotional way. Jimi lied, he hit his women (or at least one as the book describes), and he never took responsibility for the two children he had. But Cross' portrait of Jimi as a man who is simply struggling to survive day by day is so compelling, I could forgive all of those things. I would highly recommend this book to music fans and fans of biographies.

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