Surrender Book Summary - Surrender Book explained in key points
Listen to the Intro

Surrender summary


40 Songs, One Story

4.5 (33 ratings)
19 mins
Table of Contents

    summarized in 6 key ideas

    Audio & text in the Blinkist app
    Key idea 1 of 6

    “Cedarwood Road”: friends, family and a new name

    May 10, 1978: That’s the day that an Irish boy of slight build and of less than 5 feet 8 inches, who had just finished reading Crime and Punishment and more importantly, finished listening to the Ramones’ “Leave Home,” turned 18. Flush with the excitement of his creative influences and his birthday, that boy, Paul David Hewson, sat down and wrote his first song: “Out of Control.”

    DJ Dave Fanning released that song for the first time the following year. Since then, Fanning has played the first release of every new single written by that 18-year-old Irish boy, now known throughout the world as Bono, lead singer of one of the world’s most successful, prolific, and long-lasting bands, U2.

    Bono’s childhood was happy at first, growing up on Cedarwood Road with his Catholic, opera-loving father and his loving, laughing Protestant mother and her large family. He was naughty in school, got expelled, and was put in a new experimental inner-city school in Dublin that he loved. It was a childhood spent playing chess with his father, and one spent riding bicycles while holding on to the back of a milk truck. 

    Good times – until the tragedy that made an indelible imprint on him struck. When he was 14, Bono’s mother Iris died of a stroke. The three men she left behind, Bono, his brother Norman, and his father were locked in rage and grief, unable to communicate as they were when his mother was alive to smoothen the connections. They took their sadness out on each other. To this day, Bono is not interested in food because he associates it with the times he had to fend for himself, eating reconstituted mashed potatoes out of a pot sitting in front of the TV, or airline meals that tasted of tin that Norman brought home from his job at the airport. 

    His main source of companionship was the gang of kids and families up and down Cedarwood Road. His childhood best friend and neighbor Guggi gave everyone in the family and street fantastical nicknames. He’s the one who came up with Bono, short for Bonovox – not for its Latin meaning – “nice voice”–  but for Bono Vox of O’Connell Street, a hearing aid shop in Dublin that Guggi liked the sound of. And since that day, Paul Hewson became Bono, a name that in four decades would be known throughout the world.

    Want to see all full key ideas from Surrender?

    Key ideas in Surrender

    More knowledge in less time
    Read or listen
    Read or listen
    Get the key ideas from nonfiction bestsellers in minutes, not hours.
    Find your next read
    Find your next read
    Get book lists curated by experts and personalized recommendations.
    Shortcasts New
    We’ve teamed up with podcast creators to bring you key insights from podcasts.

    What is Surrender about?

    Surrender: 40 Songs, One Story (2022) is a poetic tour through four decades of the life of Bono, lead singer of U2 –  one of the world’s biggest and longest-lasting bands. With each chapter headed by a song and illustrations throughout, the book is a memoir sprinkled with self-deprecating humor, wit, and poignancy.

    Who should read Surrender?

    • Fans of U2
    • Music lovers who are interested in hearing about musical history
    • Anyone interested in pop culture

    About the Author

    Born Paul Hewson in Dublin, Ireland, Bono is known to the world as lead singer of rock band U2. As well as numerous albums, tours, and collaborations, Bono is also a philanthropist who helped found ONE, an organization dedicated to eradicating poverty and preventable disease. 

    Categories with Surrender

    Books like Surrender

    People ❤️ Blinkist
    Sven O.

    It's highly addictive to get core insights on personally relevant topics without repetition or triviality. Added to that the apps ability to suggest kindred interests opens up a foundation of knowledge.

    Thi Viet Quynh N.

    Great app. Good selection of book summaries you can read or listen to while commuting. Instead of scrolling through your social media news feed, this is a much better way to spend your spare time in my opinion.

    Jonathan A.

    Life changing. The concept of being able to grasp a book's main point in such a short time truly opens multiple opportunities to grow every area of your life at a faster rate.

    Renee D.

    Great app. Addicting. Perfect for wait times, morning coffee, evening before bed. Extremely well written, thorough, easy to use.

    People also liked

    Start growing with Blinkist now
    26 Million
    Downloads on all platforms
    4.7 Stars
    Average ratings on iOS and Google Play
    Of Blinkist members create a better reading habit*
    *Based on survey data from Blinkist customers
    Powerful ideas from top nonfiction

    Try Blinkist to get the key ideas from 5,500+ bestselling nonfiction titles and podcasts. Listen or read in just 15 minutes.

    Start your free trial