Who says stars’ autobiographies don’t sell? There are three new ones on the hardcover nonfiction list this week — Justin Timberlake’s “Hindsight,” “Beastie Boys Book” and Abbi Jacobson’s “I Might Regret This.”
To be fair, these aren’t standard-issue tell-alls, ghostwritten and burnished to a high gloss. “I Might Regret This” is an illustrated essay collection; the Beastie Boys — and Timberlake, to a far lesser extent — have delivered memoirs with a technicolor, scrapbooky feel. “Beastie Boys Book,” chockablock with personal snapshots, punchy, stream-of-consciousness memories and stories from friends, is especially raw, a deeper way for the band’s fans to engage.
“These guys are great storytellers and they’ve amassed stories both epic (known moments in the band’s history) and intimate (memories, observations, pranks, etc.) that all together tell the story of the band,” says the book’s editor, Julie Grau, adding that there were a few things that guided the 592-page book’s aesthetic: the band’s short-lived zine, Grand Royal, the encyclopedic heft of “The Whole Earth Catalogue” and an R. Buckminster Fuller book called “Your Private Sky.”
Timberlake announced “Hindsight” in an Instagram post and gave his fans a sneak peek a few days before it came out. It documents his musical ability from the age of 2, when he was singing along to an Eagles track in the car and his uncle, who was driving, pulled over and said to his mother, “Do you hear that? Your son is singing harmony with Don Henley.”
Like Timberlake, Jacobson, the co-creator and co-star of “Broad City,” announced her book on Instagram. In “I Might Regret This,” framed by a cross-country road-trip, she examines some of her worries and regrets and fears.
For a period of time Jacobson, whose Twitter bio is “I make stuff,” shared her drawings on Tumblr, where she occasionally fielded fans’ questions. “I want to get a lower back tattoo of your face. You cool with that?” one wrote. She responded, “When faced with difficult decisions, I often make a pros and cons list. But, in this case, I can say with pretty strong confidence that you should not do this.” Jacobson is also an avid reader who, like a few other celebrities, recommends books on social media — most recently Valerie Luiselli’s “Tell Me How It Ends: An Essay in Forty Questions,” about the plight of Central American child migrants. “Devastating read,” Jacobson captioned her Instagram photo. “Should be required.”