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Freddie and Me: A Coming-of-Age (Bohemian) Rhapsody
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Freddie and Me: A Coming-of-Age (Bohemian) Rhapsody

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3.58 of 5 stars 3.58  ·  rating details  ·  330 ratings  ·  69 reviews
High Fidelity meets Wayne's World in this utterly charming graphic memoir about a young man's life-long obsession with the rock band Queen.
All of us have had that one band with which we identify, the band that was always there for us during good times and bad. For Mike Dawson it's always been Queen and Freddie Mercury. Not unlike "Bohemian Rhapsody," Freddie & Me takes
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Paperback, 304 pages
Published May 27th 2008 by Bloomsbury USA (first published January 1st 2008)
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Sam Quixote
Freddie & Me is Mike Dawson’s autobiography framed by his love of the rock band, Queen. Mike lived in England for a few years as a kid, fell in love with the music the first time he heard it, and then his parents moved the family to America where he’s lived since.

I’m a fan of Mike’s podcast, The Ink Panthers Show or TIPS, which he does with fellow cartoonist Alex Robinson (author of Box Office Poison among other comics) where they talk current affairs and funny stories from their lives, iro
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Bob Fingerman
Jun 05, 2008 Bob Fingerman rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: fans of Queen, autobiography, indy comics
Dawson's heartfelt (though never mawkish) autobiographical paean to Freddie Mercury and Queen is a thoroughly enjoyable read. His art is fluid, as is the storytelling, dipping back and forth in time. The text during the middle-school years reads authentically as written by a thoughtful, awkward tween/teen. Since he portrays himself keeping a diary, I imagine he referred to it often or lifted actual passages straight from those pages to these. It really works well. His adolescence dovetails organ ...more
Jennifer
A sweet graphic novel memoir of growing up on Queen and classic rock. Dawson does a nice job of showing what a prominent place music holds in the lives of teens. The music references to Wham, Rush and George Michael resonated with this Gen-Xer, and Dawson's observations of teens just hanging out and jamming are spot-on. If I knew any Queen songs other than Bohemian Rhapsody, I might have given it another star:)
Derek
This is a comic book memoir, told through the author's memories of music. (I've always thought 'graphic novel' seemed pretentious, I don't know why.) It's told primarily as a "memory play" a la Tennessee Williams, although in this case the author's memories don't center around a glass menagerie, they center around his obsession with Queen.

There's a lot to like here, and there are some surprisingly moving sections, especially when dealing with his memories (or, technically, the nature of memory i
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Ryan
There were things about this book I really liked and things that bugged me beyond belief. I appreciated the demonstration of the power a band can have on someone's life and the surprise appearances by other musicians in the imagined conversations pieces. The problem I did have with the book was that I felt some of the dialogue was choppy and in illustrating that sliced dialogue the author drew certain sentences have in the frame ( after a while this became annoying).

All and all a good book aside
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Adriana
I’m a massive QUEEN fan and think that Freddie Mercury was a musical genius on par with Mozart, so I was all set to love a story that revolved around him.
So imagine my surprise when the book turned out to be a deeply personal memoir that only kind of relates to Queen in that the author was obsessed with hem as a child. There are more details about Wham! than there are about the titular Freddie.
Some kudos are deserved for Dawson’s expert exploration of what memory is and how music shapes and fol
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Julia
In his autobiographical graphic novel, Mike Dawson illustrates his boyhood years and his experiences as a transplant from England to New Jersey. More importantly, and nearly as big an influence in his life, he is also a passionate fan of the band Queen. Mike's recollections of events and interactions in his young life are very often tightly entwined with Queen's own history and songs.

Freddie & Me especially resonated with me because I, too, am (or at least once was) a Queen "superfan." Mike
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Michele
High Fidelity meets Wayne’s World in this utterly charming graphic memoir about a young man’s life-long obsession with the rock band Queen.
All of us have had that one band with which we identify, the band that was always there for us during good times and bad. For Mike Dawson it's always been Queen and Freddie Mercury. Not unlike “Bohemian Rhapsody,” Freddie & Me takes readers on a rock-opera-like journey—from Mike’s childhood in the UK, through high school in New Jersey, and into the nineti
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Lydia
While the artwork wasn't my favorite, this was a thoroughly enjoyable way to spend my morning commute. And, I'll admit, I got a little teary-eyed at the end. It's true that one band or singer or actor or celebrity can impact a person greatly. This illustrated (get it?) just how much of an impact one stranger can make.
Donna
"Freddie" is Freddie Mercury of Queen, who the author is obsessed with from childhood on. I like that he constantly makes fun of himself, instead of taking his obsession seriously. The result is funny, and I felt a bit nostalgic, seeing as how he's one year older than me and came of age at the same time.
Robin
Jun 23, 2008 Robin rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: those who like qurky graphic novels
Recommended to Robin by: reviews
This was a surprise because I wasn't sure how I'd feel reading about a man reflecting on his life and his obsession with the rock band Queen but it was really interesting and he didn't get maudlin or overly introspective so that was great.
Dov
I had high hopes for this book. I tend to really appreciate graphic memoirs and there will always be a special place in my heart for Queen (I still miss the presence of Freddie Mercury in the world nearly twenty-five years after his death.) But the title gave the impression of more of a love of or fascination with Freddie Mercury than there was. And the storytelling just didn't pull me in. I finished "Freddie and Me" and felt that I knew the basic details of the life of a guy who fought with his ...more
Sheryl Olszewski
When I read a preview that this graphic novel was by a lifelong fan of Freddie Mercury, I hunted it down online and instantly clicked "Buy Me." I'm not a young lad from England, but was a teen aged girl in America when Queen first hit our airwaves and I was hooked instantly. It was a delight to find someone else whose young life was as influenced ... influenced is too small a word but it's the only one coming to mind ... as I was. In rough times, Freddie's voice would soar in my mind - "Keep You ...more
Sarah
Mike Dawson was born in England and as a boy falls in love with Queen. His family moves to the US and as a teenager in the grunge era of the 90s, he remains faithful to his favorite band.
Queen is the soundtrack to his life - his longing, fears, joys, successes, and failures. It is packed with both good memories and bad. His life isn't especially remarkable but allows for instant identification. I would think that most MTV generation readers would have absolute memories of certain bands or songs
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Kelly
I thought the art and the narration were fabulous, but also I love the idea of autobiography through music and can imagine writing my own through various phases of fandom.
James
one of my favorite bands
Jayaprakash Satyamurthy
Music is a huge part of my life; most of my happy childhood memories have music in the background, whether it was The Beatles and Simon & Garfunkel or my parents listening to melancholy ghazals late at night or my obsession with western classical from the age of 10 onwards. Music's still a vital part of my life, and my band recently released its first album, fulfilling a lifelong dream. So I could really relate to Dawson's brilliant, sensitive memoir about his lifelong love for the music of ...more
Chip'sBookBinge
I had read a few reviews about Freddie & Me prior to checking it out for myself. I love comic books and I love Queen. So how can you lose when combining the two? Ya can't. Straight up, this was a very cute, touching and fun autobiography about Mike Dawson and his life as it related to his favorite band of all time: Queen. Even though all the reviews I had read were overwhelmingly positive, I was still a bit iffy on how this would play out before reading it.

I will admit that the first 1/4th
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Dave
Freddie and Me is an interesting and enjoyable graphic novel that uses a personal story to explore the larger concept of memory and memoir. Mike Dawson explores his own personal fascination with the rock band Queen from his childhood to the present, and along the way uses that as a jumping off point to explore his life as a whole and his relationships with friends and family filtered through the lens of Queen.

My favorite part was where he explored the nature of memory and point of view. In it,
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Erik
The British Invasion in comics has been largely dominated by the dark fantasies of Alan Moore and Neil Gaiman. So it was with some surprise that I came across this charming and whimsical memoir by this Brit-turned-American comics auteur Mike Dawson, who doesn’t fit this mold at all. And it’s equally as striking how I immediately thought his style to be reminiscent of Alex Robinson (a favorite of mine in the alternative comics scene, or whatever you call it) – only to find out that Robinson is a ...more
Robert Beveridge
Mike Dawson, Freddie and Me: A Coming-of-Age (Bohemian) Rhapsody (Bloomsbury, 2008)

My general rule of thumb on memoirs is simple: I loathe them. I have encountered a few that have been worthwhile over the years (Ruth Reichl's food-porn series of memoirs, Wilson Smith's Just Dirt, a handful of others), but for the most part, they're uninteresting people going on about their uninteresting lives. Graphic novel memoirs alleviate this trend somewhat, as they tend to be short (at least), but there's s
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VeganMedusa
I figured this might be an okay read, so I was pleasantly surprised. First, I'm not Queen's Number One Fan - they're great but I have plenty of favourites ahead of them. Second, I was from the era of Wham! and will always have a piece of my heart reserved for George Michael.
So when a few pages into this book, we meet his sister who has an enduring love for Wham!, and we see the siblings fighting over who's best, I was on Sarah's side all the way. And later the author imagines various key points
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Poonam
If you look at the content, it is very much a Queen (band) fanboy book. It is a memoir in graphic novel format about an English boy who grew up in US loving Queen. Freddie Mercury of course is his idol. All his memories are weaved with memory of Queen. He also talks of 'ownership' of fanboyism to Queen. You get the drift - only puzzling thing to me is he never explained why he loved Queens so much. What struck me was not the content but the format of book.


The art work reminded me of Joe Sacco (I
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Tatiana
Wow, what a great memoir. Wonderful art, wonderful narrative, all tied together expertly, using the medium of comics to its capacity. The story reaches beyond most other comics I've read lately, asking complex questions that explore life, existence and autobiography itself. Those questions take their time to ripen and fill this large book chock full of content and meaning. Also a wonderful fan tribute that anyone who's ever been consumed, heart and soul, with a band can understand.
Nicole
I was going to give this one 3 stars, because I didn't find the actual act of reading it as enjoyable as I would have liked. But in retrospect this is a pretty great autobiographical comic.

This book is as much about memory as anything, which explains the repetition and the occasional disjointed feeling. It's roughly linear, but certain loops keep intruding. As a Queen fan only a few years younger than Dawson, I find it both frustrating and awesome that Freddie himself only appears in 3rd person
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Sarah
An endearing look into one boy's identity with and through the music of Freddie Mercury. Everyone has that one thing that is external to them, but is an enormous part of their identity (I still can't date a guy if he doesn't "get" Muppet-humor); for Mike Dawson, that thing is Freddie Mercury and Queen. Reading about his adolescent awkwardness, that ennui and ambivalence, that confusion and wanderlust, brings me back to my own never-ending journey and, more specifically, harkens me back to witnes ...more
Patricia
Oct 12, 2009 Patricia rated it 2 of 5 stars
Recommended to Patricia by: embarrassment of riches
Shelves: read-in-2009
The book section of the Oregonian recommended this to me and I missed the fact that it was a graphic novel. As I've said before, I'm not the biggest fan of the genre, and reading this I realized why. There are no paragraphs. Each picture has a sentence or two, but then my eye has to move a great expanse across the page to the next sentence. It is too choppy for me and there isn't enough description. I like description better than pictures.

But this book was okay. Davis and I are essentially the s
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Tessa
There is one really brilliant passage in this memoir that is perfectly suited to the form of the graphic novel--Dawson talks about how he sees his memories and wonders how other people see theirs. Otherwise it's a good story about a regular guy who happens to be a huge Queen fan. Nothing particularly awful happens to him (as is usually the case in memoir). I think the worst thing is that a drunk dad of one of his childhood friends yells at him for acidentally breaking a toy, and the older brothe ...more
George Marshall
Sadly it doesn't deliver on the promise. At last, I thought, an autobiographical graphic novel (a genre I love) that is not about 20 something ex-students in a big city or being a teenager in the suburbs. This is real British working class family life, presented with gentle humour and honesty. But I fear that is really as far as it goes...it has little depth or insight and I was yearning for a more critical analysis of celebrity worship. The failing was all the stronger because the artwork is gr ...more
Josh
One of the few autobio graphic novels that justifies being labeled a "memoir." Dawson uses the British rock group Queen as a vehicle for discussing different periods of his unique personal history of growing up in England and moving to the States as a boy. He tells an episodic story in a way that still has the flow of a continuous narrative. Dawson's portrayal of his family dynamics expertly sketches in a sense of everybody's personality -- and the warmth they all feel for each other -- without ...more
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Mike Dawson was born in England, and emigrated to the United States in 1986, where his family settled in Red Bank, New Jersey. He studied painting at the Mason Gross School of the Arts at Rutgers University.

Since 2005 Dawson's work has appeared in a number of comics anthologies, including AdHouse Books successful Project: Superior collection, and issue #1 of the spin-off series, Superior Showcase.
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More about Mike Dawson...
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