Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Sweet Revenge: The Intimate Life of Simon Cowell” as Want to Read:
Sweet Revenge: The Intimate Life of Simon Cowell
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Sweet Revenge: The Intimate Life of Simon Cowell

2.89 of 5 stars 2.89  ·  rating details  ·  186 ratings  ·  51 reviews
For this definitive biography, acclaimed journalist and bestselling author Tom Bower was granted unprecedented access to Simon Cowell and those around him—and the result is a fascinating multilayered portrait of one of the world’s most intriguing television personalities ever to dominate the music industry.

Simon Cowell has made an international name for himself as the no
ebook, 384 pages
Published April 24th 2012 by Ballantine Books (first published January 1st 2012)
more details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Sweet Revenge, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Sweet Revenge

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 351)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
Quite an interesting biography on a man whose chosen mistress is power. I find Simon to be a fascinating and driven man who will accomplish just about anything he sets his mind too. I do admire his honesty and straight forwardness where others might find him arrogant and obnoxious. I had to read this book immediately, downloading it to my Nook the moment I knew that it was released. One of the better biographies I have read.
This was a brilliantly written account of Cowell's professional career. There was some information at the beginning as to his early years and family history, but this was mostly an account of his ascent to the top of the music and tv business. While some of the business jargon was slightly confusing to someone who has no knowledge of the subject, all areas where this happened were fleeting and necessary to understand the bigger picture.
If you like Simon Cowell, you will love this book.
Mark Butterworth
"Survival in the music industry required luck, talent, relationships, and brazenness. Those with only three out of the four qualities would inevitably fail. To climb to the very top, as Cowell had, also required single-mindedness, selfishness, and stardust."

I've read a lot about Simon Cowell before - interviews and biographies. They all hint at what this uncovers but while others hinted at a quirky guy with drive and a big idea, this book gets closer and builds on what's come before by exposing
I don't know why, but it was bit hard to read for me. Still I got till the end and didn't regret a second that I read it. It is full with interesting deatails about his life. All in all it perfectly shows that climbing showbiz mountain isn't easy task to take on. You are gonna fall, get bruised, but you just can't give up.
I had always - secretly - wanted to meet Simon Cowell. But not any more. Tom Bower has cured me of that.

The first half of this biography made me think Cowell should be fronting one of those "Ten years ago, I was a miserable loser. But just look at me now! And the secret is...." In inauspicious Act I to his career, for sure.

As well as learning that Cowell is VERY generous to his many ex-girlfriends (and so very hetrosexual), this book had lots of interesting stuff about the inner workings - if th
What would you call a person whose daily life revolved around “vitamin injections, special fruits, intravenous drips, piles of pills, Botox, massages, dyes, chest waxing, tooth caps and cosmetic surgery” all in an attempt to limit “the evidence of aging?” What would you call a person whose biggest wish is to acquire “as much money as I can get my hands on?” He’s known by fans and critics alike around the world as “Sarcastic Simon, Nasty Simon, Mr. Nasty.” That pretty much sums up “the intimate l ...more
Terrible, that's the only word I have to say about this. Its so well planned that Simon Cowell would have had a hand in this, you can tell by reading this.

It goes from his childhood, roots, right up to today. I really think that the avenue and telling of this book about Simon and how he reacts to different things edited by him.
Barbara Kinsky

I am loving this book but if you are not a Simon Cowell fan or supporter you will not enjoy this book. I now admire the music mogul even more than I did before. From a man who was semi-poor, who was laughed at continuously for music flops to a self-made well respected millionaire today - unbelievable!!
didnt like the writing style and whilst some of the details of cowells life are fascinating he author managed to drag out each item too far. He also refers to all the characters by surname only which only added to the confusion and made reading awkward. Haven't finished it and have no intention to.

I am a fan of Simon Cowell, but I could not get through the book. It was from the library so I did not feel bad when I put it down. I found it boring. Maybe I should have plugged along, but I hate to read just for the sake of reading.
This was quite an interesting book and it certainly does what it can to uncover every secret that Simon Cowell ever had. I think it is good that Cowell did nothing to stop this book coming out as some vain celebrities may have done, instead being of the opinion that he isn't bothered what people think of him. There are rumours that he fully cooperated with the book behind the scenes and I think he probably did, given the level of detail about Simon's thirst for revenge on everyone who wronged hi ...more
Simon Taylor
Sweet Revenge focuses largely on the professional life of Simon Cowell, most likely because his work takes up so much of his life.

Following a scene-setting “day in the life of” segment, Bower chronologically charts the rise and rise (and plateau?) of Cowell’s varied career from his early days in the industry to his TV successes.

It is particularly interesting to read about the thought processes and methodology of Cowell as he finesses his TV empire. We know who he hired, who he fired and what we
I am always interested in learning about how people I think are interesting get where they are today. I thought the author did a great job of telling Simon's story objectively. He didn't gloss over the mistakes made, the vanity or the enemies. Simon doesn't have a clean life or noble objectives, but he was innovative in seeing the profit of music and television. It was a little bit difficult to keep all the players straight. There were so many people involved at Sony, all the television stations ...more
Kerry Henn
Nothing too exciting about it. Disappointing.
Mildly interesting. Simon benefited from a rich father, constantly helping him out with jobs, money, place to stay, contacts. Simon makes lots of mistakes, but has the cushion to learn from them and bounce back. He likes his yacht. I find this stuff interesting, but not everyone will. The making of bands and artists, Pete Waterman from Stock, Aitken, Waterman, Dannii Minogue, Paula. how he learns from others' success, like Simon Fuller's Spice Girls. I like X-Factor, so it's interesting to see h ...more
Becks Dawe
I hate to admit it but I struggled to finish this which was a shame because I was really looking forward to a gripping biography. Tom Bower spends equal time going over Simon's past and his family and all his success with X Factor etc and LOT of time explaining relationships with Simon's contacts (how they met etc). However, it's left a bitter taste in my mouth to hear that Simon's call's the women who he "spends time with" as "toys".

Am I glad I spent time reading this - yes, but only because it
Saskia 'follow my shoes' Smith
BORING! I read the whole book, and its O.K but i found it boring. TBH, the stories and hype in the media makes this book look far more exciting than what it is - sales obviously!! He does come across as arrogant, its left me with a different outlook at Mr Cowell all together.Very badly written and full of irrelevant detail making it boring to read. Nothing juice in it, nothing we didnt know, other than he wipes his arse with black toilet paper! who cares. Badly written too.
A well-researched, in-depth look at the meteoric rise of Britain's most notorious TV personality, Sweet Revenge gives great insight into the backstage machinations of Cowell's TV shows, his climb through the ranks of the music industry and his real opinions on the talent show winners and losers who have paraded across Britain and America's TV screens for the last ten years. Well worth a read.
I don't like Cowell in any way, but I do get hopelessly addicted to his shows, something which embarrasses me but is also something I have to embrace. I was quite shocked in the end how much I got drawn into this, and how much I actually learnt about Cowell. Altogether, a very interesting book- I just couldn't resist it and I am glad to have read it now.
Easy to read. The first chapters are boring but then things pick up. Interesting to discover the story behing the Idol competitions, the X Factor and the America's/Britain's Got Talent shows. Also interesting to see how a ''loser'', with all his insecurities, no education, mediocre talent and vision can make it big. As I said, light and easy reading.
Angela Mccallum

I wasn't living in the country during Cowell's rise to mega stardom so I found the book interesting. If you're looking for scandal this is not the book for you. It focuses on his business interests and only dips into his somewhat weird private life. Despite everything I think I'm still a little bit in love with him!
I was very disappointed in this book. Lots and lots of detail on the music business which I had no interest in. I struggled through about half way until I just wasn't interested any more. Outside of determining this man is totally self-absorbed and neurotic, there wasn't much worth reading. Didn't finish.
If you like Simon Cowell (which I do) you will find this an interesting read. It really does chronicle his life in the music industry and his general manipulation of people. His ambition and drive is admirable. The book will only be of I Teresa to people who watch his tv shows and have followed his career.
Probably more than a person needs to about inside tv program/network politics. To sum up the book's take on Simon: he is a narcissist and very competitive and even revengeful toward his colleagues. He finds most people boring and and I happen to find this book about Simon boring.
Elaine Cochrane
There isn't much gossip in this book it majorly describes how much money Cowell has made. I went into this book thinking I quite liked the man and now have no time for him, pompous, arrogant, and with no care for anyone other than himself this book isn't really worth a read.
Ellen Stafford
I really enjoyed this book and found out so many things about Simon Cowell I didn't know. I have found Simon Cowell as an interesting person. I would recommend this to anyone who wants to find out more about his work in particular on The X Factor and talent shows.
I used to think Simon needed a dirty spanking but now I just think he's a woman hating pig. If you want a play-by-play accounting of backstage deals and reading about Simon getting phone calls in the tub, keep reading. If you want something else pick a different book.
Anne Mitchell
Extremely clunkily written, so much so that I had to re-read numerous sentences to be clear about the author's meaning. I persevered because I find the subject matter interesting (in an horrific car-crash kind of way), but overall this was a frustrating read.
Lisa Bennett
really interesting book on a very interesting man. he really has worked bloody hard to get where he is today. its a shame he didnt want to write it himself though. i do still wonder if he is gay. he screams bisexual.
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • What Really Happened: John Edwards, Our Daughter, and Me
  • Finding My Voice
  • I Don't Mean to Be Rude, But...: Backstage Gossip from American Idol & the Secrets that Can Make You a Star
  • Still Talking
  • Rachel Carson: Witness for Nature
  • Cooking & Screaming: Finding My Own Recipe for Recovery
  • Broken Silence (Inspector Jack Brady, #1)
  • Ecstasy and Me: My Life as a Woman
  • James Bond: The Authorized Biography of 007
  • Hollywood Forever
  • Oprah
  • My Remarkable Journey
  • Fork It Over: The Intrepid Adventures of a Professional Eater
  • i2
  • Chicken Soup for the Soul: Think Positive: 101 Inspirational Stories about Counting Your Blessings and Having a Positive Attitude
  • First You Have to Row a Little Boat: Reflections on Life & Living
  • Timesplash (Timesplash, #1)
  • Intuition (Bennett Sisters, #1)
Tom Bower (born 28 September 1946) is a British writer, noted for his investigative journalism and for his unauthorized biographies.
A former Panorama reporter, his books include unauthorised biographies of Tiny Rowland, Robert Maxwell, Mohamed Al-Fayed, Geoffrey Robinson, Gordon Brown and Richard Branson.
He won the 2003 William Hill Sports Book of the Year Award for Broken Dreams, an investigatio
More about Tom Bower...

Share This Book