Under My Skin: Drama, Trauma, and Rock íní Roll
By: Elise Krentzel - Kumi Books, $29.98
Description: In her new memoir, authoress Elise Krentzel details the first several steps of an exciting journey, one that takes her from an abusive upbringing in 1950s and 1960s New York City, to a young-adulthood spent discovering the allure of Europe and ultimately, alongside KISS in Japan as a rock and roll journalist.
A true tale of survival and skill, Under My Skin: Drama, Trauma, and Rock íní Roll offers a compelling look inside the world of rock and roll, from a perspective not often told: A woman as part of the media.
Verdict: Once you pick up Elise Krentzelís Under My Skin: Drama, Trauma, and Rock íní Roll, it is nearly impossible to put it down. Being only 190 pages means that the story is fast-paced, moving seamlessly through various times and locations. But the other aspect that makes the story so irresistible is how palpable the emotion is. Krentzel spares no detail in describing the often lonely, often loveless childhood she experienced.
And while the emotion within the first thirty pages may have the potential to be suffocating, this is ultimately a story about freedom. We are along for the ride as Krentzel proves to be the most reliable of narrators, taking us on a city-by-city Euro-trip full of adventure, sex, and substance, each encapsulated by its own bolded subheadings. But none this information is related in a way that is altogether too edgy or graphic; in fact, itís the opposite, setting the scenes with just the right amount of detail ó the sort of casual story that your coolest aunt might tell at a party. Itís all simply enough.
The bookís third act is where many might be tempted to feel the meat of the story is, beginning with a chapter entitled, ďIím Gonna Be a Rock íní Roll Journalist.Ē The spoiler alert, of course, is that Krentzel makes good on her promise to become exactly that, shipping off at age nineteen to tour Japan with KISS as one of only ten journalists invited on the junket.
Itís a feat well worth the admiration and twinge of jealousy the bookís closing chapters inflict upon readers who wish we had such chances.
And in many ways, thatís ultimately the great lesson of Elise Krentzelís story: We make our own chances in life; damn rejection, with enough self confidence and self love, we can be whatever we want to be.
If the pitfall of this book is that itís just a touch too short, weíre all in luck, for Under My Skin is the first volume in the authorís planned trilogy. And I, for one, couldnít be happier to know it, for Under My Skin: Drama, Trauma, and Rock and Roll and its authoress have firmly entrenched themselves not only under my skin, but inside my wannabe-rock-journalist soul.
About the Author - Elise Krentzel is a multiglot: author, ghostwriter, mentor, public speaker, and communications entrepreneur who has lived in five countries for over twenty-five years. Starting in Japan from 1977 to 1984, she owned a talent and booking agency, introduced punk rock, was a DJ and, music journalist. As Tokyo Bureau Chief for Billboard Magazine, Elise introduced the Sony Walkman and Laserdisc technology to a western audience during her stint.
After twenty years in digital travel publishing, lifestyle marketing, and public relations in Europe, she returned to the States and to her first love of writing. She has a soft spot for people (like herself) who were brought up in toxic households and brings the ďfunĒ back into dysfunction. Elise is currently working on book two, Moving From Wound to Wound. of her memoir trilogy; she is the mother of one son and currently resides in Austin, Texas, the sixth country sheís lived in.
ďI used to be a drama queen, but now Iím just a queen.Ē - from Under My Skin
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