Owing to my fascination with the seventies art, film and music scene, Patti Smith’s book, “Just Kids” was a natural fit. I wasn’t expecting to be moved so much by it, however, during its reading. Her burgeoning relationship with Robert Mappelthorpe, the denizens of the Chelsea Hotel and Warhol’s factory all come to vivid life in this autobiography.
It is always interesting to see how an artist develops, and here you get to see two of them as well as a number of others like Bob Dylan, Janis Joplin and Sam Shepard pass through the pages. It is a touching tribute to Mappelthorpe, but it’s also a painful exploration of love as it transitions from the physical, the emotional to loss.
Pick up this book. It’s an extraordinary read and won The National Book Award for Non-fiction this past year.