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Publisher's Summary

There has never been a band like Pearl Jam. The Seattle quintet has recorded 11 studio albums; sold some 85 million records; played more than a thousand shows, in 50 countries; and had five different albums reach number one. But Pearl Jam's story is about much more than music.

A study of their role in history - from Operation Desert Storm to the Dixie Chicks; "Jeremy" to Columbine; Kurt Cobain to Chris Cornell; Ticketmaster to Trump - Not for You explores the band's origins and evolution over 30 years of American culture. It starts with their founding, and the eruption of grunge, in 1991; continues through their golden age (Vs., Vitalogy, No Code, and Yield); their middle period (Binaural, Riot Act); and the more divisive recent catalog. Along the way, it considers the band's activism, idealism, and impact, from "W.M.A." to the Battle of Seattle and Body of War.

More than the first critical study, Not for You is a tribute to a famously obsessive fan base, in the spirit of Nick Hornby's Fever Pitch. Partly social history, partly autobiography, and entirely outspoken, discursive, and droll, Not for You is the first full-length treatment of Pearl Jam's odyssey and importance in the culture, from the '90s to the present.

©2020 Ronen Givony (P)2021 Tantor

What listeners say about Not for You

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Catnip for the true PJ super fans

This book is a masterwork of journalistic research into a rock band. If you’re a die hard PJ fan, this book will be the best Christmas you’ve ever had. It will be the equivalent of waking up on your 16th birthday to find Eddie Vedder in your bedroom, playing all your favorite songs for you on his ukulele.

If you’re not a PJ fan, or even just a casual fan, you will become very angry and perhaps a bit annoyed at the excruciating detail this book dives into. This book is most certainly not for you.

But it is for the super fan.

The author interjects his own opinion of various songs, albums, and other bands, which I found to be entertaining and awesome, even though I disagreed with him on some things. His opinions were totally unnecessary, but their inclusion showed he’s a Pearl Jam super fan who truly doesn’t give a f&&$@ what you think, and that’s exactly who I want writing a book like this.

To my knowledge, this is the BEST band biography ever written by a super fan. If that’s not the case, sue me. I’d much prefer reading a book by a guy like this than reading some dry, boring, professorial dirge about PJ, written by some nonfiction superstar.

4 people found this helpful

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robot voice and boring

narrator sounds like a robot. Story is 25% Pearl Jam 25% other bands 25% war and 25% politics. It's all over the place and mentions the same stories three times.

2 people found this helpful

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Ronen Givony: Marked for Death

This is the most breathtakingly arrogant book ever written by a "fan". Absolute garbage...

1 person found this helpful

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Pearl Jam from the fans perspective

A pretty good book on a successful band while also covering the events that surrounded it. About 50% of the book focus on the first 4 years of the band, when they were on top of their game. The author admits to being a major fan, but is objective throughout the book. He does call the band out a few times for their work post 1998. This book does take a few turns off the beaten path. Covering topics like the Seattle WTO protest, 911, and the war on terror. Overall, an enjoyable read for any Pearl Jam fan.

1 person found this helpful

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Arrogant and insulting to actual fans

Terrible narration. From the introduction you wonder why the author is even writing the book or is a fan because he basically says it’s embarrassing to like them. Little to no bona fides and embarrassed to be a fan? Don’t waste your time.

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Waste of time and money.

There is nothing interesting or telling in this book. Even if there was, the narrator’s “watching paint dry” approach is painful. Don’t bother.

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  • daniel robinson
  • 12-08-21

Not for you if you are a pearl jam fan

This is definitely not for you if, unlike the author as far as I can tell, you like pearl jam, it is merely a list of news reports and such which seem to focus on Eddie vedders politics.
I won't be finishing it.