Be omnivorous, don't just read one kind of book, read everything. - Richard Wagamese

Friday, November 18, 2011

Review: Crazy Heart by Thomas Cobb

Publisher: Harper Perennial 
Pages: 248 
Source: Publisher 

"Crazy Heart" is a beautifully crafted story about a flawed man with a dream. A dream he once attained but has since squandered. This is a story about a talented, washed up, country musician known as "Bad", "Bad" he will always be known as until he dies. He plans to reveal his name on his tombstone and not a minute before. Bad Blake was once a superstar, he had all the fame and money he ever wanted. He's know fifty-seven and just getting by. He's on the road in his pickup, playing small bars, the occasional bowling alley, his money is all gone but everyone still knows him as a great country musician. Bad has had four failed marriages. His only son was taken away by his ex-wife and Bad hasn't spoken to him in over twenty years. The booze and country music lifestyle was too irresistible. He was always at home for a few day, then on the road for a few months. Finally, Bad is offered a great gig, opening for the legendary Tommy Sweet, the man he helped get started. The man he had open for him. The tables have turned and Bad is reluctant to take the opportunity. Bad's life seems to be going nowhere, until he meets a young writer named Jean Craddock. His love for Jean makes him want to be a better man. However, his dependence on the alcohol threatens his future. 

I admit, I'm a country music fan. I grew up listening to country music and I know who Hank Williams, George Jones and Kenny Rogers are. I really enjoyed this book. This is the story of country music before the glamor. I felt sorry for Bad but I also knew it was a lot of his own doings. I wanted him to succeed and be on top again. The story was very well written, and I had no idea that Jeff Bridges won an academy award. I had no expectations for this book, and I was very surprised by the story. I didn't expect to enjoy it as much as I did, a great read. 

FYI: The ending for the Crazy Heart movie is completely different. I preferred the book.


  1. I saw the movie and I didn't care for it. From your review, I think the book would be a lot better than the movie.

  2. I had no idea this was also a book. I haven't seen the movie and from your review it looks like I should read the book first if I plan of sitting down to watch the movie. I'm not a country music "fan" but I do like a country song every now and then and I'm a sucker for a good emotional story. Great review.

  3. I heard the movie is wonderful! I didn't know there was a book also! I really dislike when the movie ends differently from the book. It just seems wrong to me somehow! Great review!

  4. I hadn't ever heard of this book before, but the human side of this dramatic read seems like something that I would adore, and I love it that there is a movie out there to watch after I finish reading. This was a great review and I enjoyed it! Glad to hear that it was such a success for you!

  5. I loooove country. Especially old country. This sounds like one I should check out.

    Does the movie or book have a happier ending?

  6. I stupidly had no idea this was a book! I will have to check this out as I loved the movie!

  7. Aww, I love that you love country music! I'll admit that I don't really listen to much music in general (because I'm awful at multitasking and I always choose my books over my iPod LOL!), but I've always had a soft spot for country too! :)

    Awesome review, Mrs. Q! I'm going to have to check this one out!

    And I agree -- books are usually better than the movies! ;)

  8. I've heard that the endings were different. I've gone through love/hate phases with country music in my life - there's really no in between for me. I don't know why that is, other than country has such a distinctive sound that I really have to be in the mood for.

  9. My dad was a fan of the old, traditional country music, so I grew up hearing Tex Ritter, Marty Robbins, Hank Williams, etc. I think I'll be able to relate to this book too. I'm not surprised to see that the book is better than the movie.

  10. I love when you review books I usually Im not even aware of and specially if they have been turned into movies XD. I rarely read fiction but I do like to keep up with its releases and authors.

    Great review!