Graham finally has the opportunity to make a name for himself as a journalist. His assignment is to go on tour with the successful band, The Texas Madmen, and write an exclusive. Lead singer, Ethan James, is not at all pleased. The band keeps everything tightly under wraps and Graham is supposed to dig up all their secrets. It doesn’t take long for Graham to discover that Ethan prefers men and the two fall into bed together while on the road.
Now Graham has to decide what to put in his article as all of the band members and the band itself starts to implode.
Facing the Music was published in 2013. Since then there have been a number of rock star books written and in my experience, many have been done better.
To start off with, we have Graham trying to make a name for himself in journalism and meeting Ethan who is not expecting him nor interested in talking to a reporter. This sets up the initial conflict and Graham is immediately attracted to Ethan, but there has never been any evidence that Ethan is attracted to men. Graham states how professional he is, yet falls for Ethan instantly while on the job and does nothing to keep a distant professional relationship. The band is not interested in a reporter touring with them, which is made clear, yet Graham cannot understand why they don’t welcome him with open arms once on tour.
We are told that Ethan is the charismatic lead singer that everyone wants to be or be with. He is mostly shown spending his time catering to the needs and wants of his band mates. There are many side stories with the band members. They all have known each other for a long time and they all have a lot of history. We are briefly told some of it, but it wasn’t enough to truly understand all of the connections. There is the standard rule that band members can’t date each other, which isn’t fully explored, although the consequences of that rule get worked into the story. It got to the point where it was difficult to determine whose story this book wanted to tell as it was everyone’s and no one’s all at the same time.
The dialogue was basic and there was potential for it to have been just an easy or comforting read. But, Ethan and Graham got together really quickly and there was not enough of a connection built either physically or emotionally for me. There was a lot of drama, which explodes at the end, but it didn’t flow well with a lack of character development for all of the characters.
This was ultimately a story that has been done before and lacked impact for me from both a plot and character development aspect. As far as rock star books, this would not be my first recommendation.