Review: Bono humbles himself in a new memoir
In a new memoir, U2 frontman Bono recounts his life in a way that most people know nothing about.
In one telling, Bono, the U2 frontman, recalls being raised in a Catholic orphanage in Brussels, Belgium. In another, he tells tales of being raised by a Roman Catholic priest, whose strict regimen is made to look better by his habit of referring to the nuns’ underwear-clad undergarments as “the Holy Spirit” as opposed to the Holy Bible, as the nuns do. Bono adds that he was also sexually abused during childhood. Other chapters seem to be completely fabricated.
In one chapter, Bono writes that he and his brother, Sean, escaped to Dublin from the orphanage. In another, he claims that he had been expelled from his high school in Dublin. In yet a third, he has been arrested for drug possession in Dublin and sentenced to five years in prison. Bono also seems to be making up parts of his memoir. He writes that he was never a Catholic, but at the age of 10 he was baptized, “by some sort of strange, Catholic thing.” He also writes that he was a drug dealer and a “top-rate” drug dealer.
Still, Bono’s memoir provides an insight into a strange and intriguing life in which his rock career was never as popular as his books and his philanthropy was legendary. As The New York Times reported his first book, “How to Be a Person,” on the newsstands and in the library, it was a bestseller and quickly climbed the bestseller lists. The book also brought a lot of attention to him, as he was once one of the biggest-selling authors in Ireland. One newspaper even ran a cover story on Bono in the newspaper of the day, the Irish Independent.
In his new memoir, Bono goes over a period of six years in his life. Born in Dublin, he was raised in a loving Catholic family, which sent him to a Catholic boarding school for a year and sent him home because he was “too young and too slow for the other public schools