I was a tried-and-true romance novel reader and never imagined I would ever be inspired to pick up a historical fiction novel. A couple of years ago, when a friend recommended Daisy Jones & The Six to me and said, “it’s giving Fleetwood Mac in the best way possible,” I reconsidered. And I haven’t stopped talking about the book since. In fact, I’m convinced Taylor Jenkins Reid conjured up some kind of magic and infused them into her books. Reid effortlessly transports you back into the 1970s, having you almost forget you’re reading about a fictional band. It’s sex, drugs & rock ‘n’ rolled into one riveting story.
If “read more” has been on your list of new year’s resolutions for five or more consecutive years—no judgment—and you have no idea what I’m talking about, let me get you up to speed. Written in the form of an oral history, Daisy Jones & The Six tells the story of an iconic ‘70s rock band’s rise to fame and their subsequent mysterious break-up. The band forms when up-and-coming singer Daisy Jones joins rising rock band The Six for a duet orchestrated by a cupid-esque band manager. Frontman of The Six, Billy Dunne, is struggling to be a good husband and father after a brush with the rockstar life. Daisy is a pill-popping beauty with an incredible voice and a knack for songwriting. When their duet becomes The Six’s biggest hit, Billy and Daisy lean into their chemistry, the band transforms into Daisy Jones & The Six and their album Aurora is released.
When I heard the news that the novel got picked up by Amazon Prime Video for a limited series, with three episodes being released at a time, I’ll admit I was skeptical. A bookworm through and through, I can confidently say adaptations rarely top the book. It’s almost impossible to replicate the magic that comes from reading the story for the first time. From imagining the characters to picturing the setting, and chronicling those fine details, the story becomes your own. Screen adaptations almost always have to leave something out, leading to something different than what you imagined. However, three episodes into Daisy Jones and I’m pleasantly surprised. Starring Sam Claflin, the king of book-to-screen adaptations himself, as Billy Dunne, and Elvis’ granddaughter, Riley Keough as Daisy Jones, the casting hits the nail on the head. The rest of The Six are rounded out by Will Harrison as guitarist Graham Dunne, Suki Waterhouse as keyboardist Karen Sirko, Sebastian Chacon as drummer Warren Rojas, and Josh Whitehouse as bassist Eddie Roundtree. The band’s honorary sixth member is Billy’s wife Camila, played by Camila Morrone. This deters from the book slightly as the actual sixth member Pete has been left out of the series entirely. All in all, the casting is bringing the essence of the book to life.
What makes Daisy Jones & The Six a book-to-screen adaptation that is just *chef’s kiss* was the brilliant decision to bring the band’s fictional album Aurora to life. *Minor spoiler alert: Daisy and Billy’s chemistry is brought to the forefront when they’re sent to Greece to write the album together alone. It’s when we realize that their passionate dislike of one another was really just a tool to distract from their attraction. It’s also when you realize the book has been heavily influenced by Fleetwood Mac’s tumultuous history. It gives you a feeling of ‘I think I’ve seen this film before, and I didn’t like the ending…’ When the novel was released, Taylor Jenkins Reid went as far as to provide readers with lyrics to the songs on Aurora, a fiction game-changer as it gave us readers insight to what made the band’s music so special. They’ve now been altered by Grammy Award-Winning Producer Blake Mills, with talents like Phoebe Bridgers & Marcus Mumford making contributions to the writing. Put simply, Aurora is Gen Z’s version of Rumours by Fleetwood Mac.
Daisy Jones & The Six, the novel, made me nostalgic for a band that never even existed. But Daisy Jones & The Six, the limited series, is hijacking Spotify Wrapped this year. In addition to releasing Aurora, the series is also releasing an EP to go along with each episode featuring music from members of the band before they came together. The music brings me, a Zillenial, back to the ‘70s and immerses me into the show, just as much as I was in the book. I’m along for the ride, so much so, that I keep forgetting I already know how the story ends. All this to say, in a world of disappointing book-to-screen adaptations, Daisy Jones & The Six is a refreshing take on how to bring a story to life more tangibly.
After bingeing the first three episodes in a single sitting, I just have one question: when’s the tour?
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