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The John Lennon Letters by John Lennon

The John Lennon Letters (edition 2012)

by John Lennon, Hunter Davies (Editor)

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1251136,969 (3.75)5
Title:The John Lennon Letters
Authors:John Lennon
Other authors:Hunter Davies (Editor)
Info:Little, Brown and Company (2012), Edition: 1, Hardcover, 400 pages
Collections:Your library

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The John Lennon Letters by John Lennon (Author)



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This collection of letters, postcards, and inscriptions by John Lennon covers his teenage years to what is believed to be the very last autograph he ever signed. The collection was put together by Hunter Davies, a long-time friend and biographer of the Beatles, and Davies provides valuable context for the more obscure fragments in particular. Where possible, he’s tracked down the original recipients to learn more about when the letter was written. For example, one letter John wrote in response to a letter in the Times about television rotting young minds. John’s defence of television, particularly educational TV such as Sesame Street, was forwarded to the writer of the original letter at John’s request, and the letter-writer’s wife framed both her husband’s letter and John’s reply. It was interesting to see this side of John.

It was also heartbreaking to read the later letters, particularly the ones where he talked about his health regimen and his practising yoga, and his assertion that he expected to live to a ripe old age. I felt dread as the book inched toward the last track of the last disc, knowing what lay at the end. But John’s letters live on.

The audio edition has two main narrators: Allan Corduner, who reads Davies’ explanations of each letter and the biographical segments, and Christopher Eccleston, who reads John’s actual letters. Eccleston played John in a biopic called Lennon Naked and was therefore a logical choice for this production. Having the two narrators worked well, and I especially enjoyed hearing Eccleston doing a Liverpool accent. (He was the reason I got this audio version.) There is also an introduction read by Hunter Davies, and a foreword read by Yoko Ono.

I recommend this in conjunction with the print book, so you can see John’s writing and hear an approximation of his voice. Overall, I gave this 3.5 stars for the content (some of the fragments were a bit of a stretch to be considered "letters") and an extra star for Eccleston, so a total of 4.5 stars. ( )
  rabbitprincess | Nov 7, 2017 |
...... We elevate people to the status of heroes in order to let ourselves off the hook: "I'm just a mere mortal – I could never even dream of doing something like that." Lennon himself always seemed at pains to deflate any such high opinions of himself: what he would make of this book, I can only guess. The letters show an ordinary human being doing ordinary things: writing lists, sending postcards, enquiring after relatives. Why is that interesting? Because that person has now achieved demigod status. Is that a good thing? I dunno – good singer, though. Pretty good songwriter too, as it goes …

You, Hunter Davies, are just doing your job. I read it from cover to cover and will probably give it as a Christmas present. We, the children of the echo, should get a life. We, the children of the echo, should know better. Time to move on. Imagine that.
added by marq | editThe Guardian, Jarvis Cocker (Oct 10, 2012)

» Add other authors (5 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Lennon, JohnAuthorprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Davies, HunterEditor & Introductionsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Nessle, DavidTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Ono, YokoForewordsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0316200808, Hardcover)

A lifetime of letters, collected for the first time, from the legendary musician and songwriter.

John Lennon was one of the greatest songwriters the world has ever known, creator of "Help!", "Come Together", "Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds", "Strawberry Fields Forever", "Imagine", and dozens more. But it was in his correspondences that he let his personality and poetry flow unguarded. Now, gathered for the first time in book form, are his letters to family, friends, strangers, and lovers from every point in his life. Funny, informative, wise, poetic, and sometimes heartbreaking, his letters illuminate a never-before-seen intimate side of the private genius.

This groundbreaking collection of almost 300 letters and postcards has been edited and annotated by Hunter Davies, whose authorized biography The Beatles (1968) was published to great acclaim. With unparalleled knowledge of Lennon and his contemporaries, Davies reads between the lines of the artist's words, contextualizing them in Lennon's life and using them to reveal the man himself.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:15:52 -0400)

(see all 2 descriptions)

Published together for the first time, this collection of letters to family, friends, lovers and complete strangers from the beloved Beatle offers an intimate look into the true personality and mind of one of popular music's most prolific and revered artists.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

» see all 5 descriptions

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