Wordsmith Wednesday: Brandi Carlile’s Broken Horses

Brandi Carlile Broken Horses review
Brandi Carlile quote

What does a great memoir do? A great memoir pulls you in and takes you along on a journey through someone’s life. By the end of the book you will know them like you never did before, fully dimensional with talents and flaws and all the things that make people wondrously human. A great memoir is intimate and honest and filled with equal doses of happiness, sadness, tragedy and hope. That’s real life, baby.

Brandi Carlile’s book Broken Horses didn’t disappoint me with any of these things. From growing up in a musical but poverty stricken home outside of Seattle, Washington to achieving collossal success in music, she’s managed to channel her humble beginnings into an monumental career. She’s made it to the top with hit records, multiple Grammy awards and of course writing this memoir.

Such people are marveling aren’t they? How did they do it? How did they pull it off?

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Brandi Carlile Broken Horses review
Brandi Carlile quote

Unequivocally true is that success takes hard work and dedication, far beyond what anyone might imagine. It takes a lot of love, too. Brandi never forgets to talk about how crucial the love of family, relationships, friendships and God are to her success. Despite experiencing many terrible setbacks on her journey through life and towards faith, she still remains devote and continues to seek success as well as help others.

Here are some additional tidbits from the book as well as some beloved quotes.

Happy reading and have a great Wordsmith Wednesday.


More interesting stuff from the book…

  • Struggled in school and had trouble with anxiety and socialization.
  • As a teenager she was publicly humiliated and denied baptism in front of an entire congregation of people.
  • Describes herself as sensitive and serious with a debilitating empathy and innocent selfishness.
  • Tomatoes are her favorite food.
  • Has used her notaity to support many charitable endeavors.
  • Became good friends with people she grew up admiring: Joni Mitchell, Elton John, Tanya Tucker and Dolly Parton and The Indigo Girls. How many people can say that about their idols!
  • Is a steadfast proponent of women’s empowerment.
  • Has dedicated time to helping people in the LGBTQ community who struggle with faith.
  • Believes COVID has helped form a new intimate connection between artist and fan that cuts out the middle-man.

Favorite quotes…

“You gotta know what you want and don’t hesitate to ask for it or you won’t get it.”

“Music is my proof that God is real.”

“You can’t hide much when you’re on stage. People see you. They see your talent and your flaws, your clothes and your fear.”

“Mysticism stands in the middle of grief.”

“Love isn’t a feeling, it’s something we do and a promise that we keep.”


Broken Horses by Brandi Carlile: Book review
Brandi Carlile Broken Horses review
Brandi Carlile quote

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8 thoughts on “Wordsmith Wednesday: Brandi Carlile’s Broken Horses

  1. It stirs the soul, doesn’t it? When we read about a person we feel a kinship with and they pour out their heart without being maudlin about it, it’s one of the best experiences ever. I recall after reading Pete Townsend’s autobiography, “Who I Am”, I immediately understood what he meant when he said that the turmoil over his childhood abuses were what fueled his creative drive. It was as if there was, suddenly, someone else who was a fellow survivor. And that’s what it’s like reading your blog, JoAnn: Even though you and I have never met, I get a strong ‘I get it’ vibe from virtually everything you write. Yea, Brandi Carlisle is an amazing artist, too! Thanks for being in the world!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It definitely does stir the soul. I completely agree. Learning from other people’s shared stories can’t be underestimated. I’m sure Pete Townsend’s book was awesome as I’m a huge fan of The Who.
      Thank you for such kind words and I’m so glad that you are in the world, too! And by the way, maudlin in a great word!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. A mesmerizing read, JoAnn, no doubt.

    Brandi clearly has uncommon skills. No, I’m now writing about the musical inclination, which is obvious, but the steadfast determination. Overcoming these daunting obstacles requires a purposefulness most of us lack. “Most,” as in, nearly all.

    That, I’d wager, is what made the memoir fascinating. Sure, there’s the undeniable talent, but the same can be said of a good number of people. What makes Brandi nearly unique is her will.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, all that and I forgot to mention she seems very feisty… that helps too!

      You are very correct… overcoming obstacles definitely takes skills…. successful people have to be masters of that. Not sure I’ve been too good at it either but it can’t hurt to keep trying!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. An amazing person! It is good that she has her faith, as many end up like Janis Joplin. It is awful what is being done by churches in the name of God to fellow human beings. And still she advocates forgiveness and helps others. I take my hat off to her! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, it’s sad that so many people use their “faith” to judge, hate and discriminate… seems so completely opposite to what it’s supposed to do. Glad she and a lot of others have learned to rise above it! 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

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