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4.02 of 5 stars 4.02  ·  rating details  ·  1,257 ratings  ·  35 reviews
The best and most complete biography about the influential Beatle.
Paperback, 691 pages
Published January 5th 1993 by Harper Perennial (first published April 15th 1986)
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Lennon by Ray Coleman was the most gripping book I have ever read. The story of his life is full of grief, sadness, anger, happiness and death. Ray Coleman demonstrates what John Lennon's life was like besides the fame and glory. I recommend this book to anyone that is a Beatles or a Lennon fan or anyone who is generally interested in this topic.

The book starts off in Liverpool, 8th of October 1940, It is the height of the London Blitz, most of Liverpool has been blown to bits but Julia and Alfr
What I appreciate most about this book is that the author has genuine admiration for his subject and demonstrates this through sincere attempts to understand everything Lennon endured and did. This is a welcome respite from the usual biographer who is almost always out to unleash the most sordid, tabloidesque details for the sake of sales, or at least has a vendetta against Yoko Ono.

Coleman does not apologize for Lennon's infamous behavior and he shouldn't. The man beat his girlfriends after his
Jenny Downing
I loved this! Picked up at a charity shop for £1 (rrp on the book just £3.95 in the day, I wasn't seeking it so was doubly delighted to enjoy it so much.

I learned so much about the Beatles and John Lennon's life. Fascinating. Ray Coleman was close to the Beatles and John in his capacity of music reporter so the book is not based on library research alone. I am a born again Beatles/Lennon fan, listening to the music and referring to the book for the biographical background to some of the lyrics.
Misti Rainwater-Lites
Received this book in my xmas stocking when I was a kid. It's my all-time favorite biography. I was so obsessed with John Lennon for so many years that I married my first husband partly because his birthday is the day before John Lennon's and my birthday is the day before Yoko Ono's. I thought we might be soul mates on the basis of our birthdays and a few other things. I was wrong about the marriage but I am not wrong about this book. It rocks.
this is a great book about the great John Lennon. The only thing is that the missing years of 1975-1980 are still missing. Nothing must be known about them. The book takes you through his turbulent childhood, through the turbulence of the Beatles, his marriages, his kids, and what troubled him most during his life. The book ends with the very tragic shooting that took his life in 1980. I highly recommend it.
A fab book about a pretty interesting guy. Author does a nice job of taking us on lennons personal journey and his struggle and strength of mind to not be pigeon holed by fans and continue searching and experimenting and expressing within and without to be John Lennon the musician, artist and humanitarian. Listening to Double Fantasy especially this time of year brings on some extremely positive vibes.
Brandy Potter
Thais book is so full of lies and unsubstanciated crap! I read and purchased this book before I knew better, before I knew about anything Beatles related. First and foremost, the people he interviewed were either minor hangers on that knew nothing or completly misquoted. As usual Cynthia and Julian and most of JOhn's family were relegated to minor irritations. The loving relationships that he had with them completly erased. Even his relationship with Yoko seemed sterile and immoral (which in som ...more
the first book about John Lennon I ever read, and probably still one of the best I've seen. It's honest without being cruel and paints a picture not of St John but of a human being who happened to be spectacular.

I've read it so many times that I've totally broken the spine.
One of the best biographies I have ever read! It reads really easily and it is very informative. There is very little bias, it shows both the good and the bad of John Lennon. It is a pretty interesting read, although it is very VERY long.
best biography I have found to date, of John Lennon. Ray Coleman defiantly does his research well. This book is a wonderful gimps into the life of an amazing human being.
The only book you need to read on John Lennon. Authoritative and Ray was one of the few writers who could genuinely claim to be a close friend of the superstar
Firoz Scribe
The definitive biography about one of the greatest humanists and musicians the modern world has ever seen. Must-read for any Lennon lover.
One of the reasons this book is so voluminous (691pp) is that because it is not well-outlined it gets redundant. Halfway thru the book, he's talking about "Please Please Me" again on the same page as "Double Fantasy." Its jumping back and forth makes it tiring.

I'd recommend a solid Beatles bio instead; the house husband era is a bore.

Further, if you're a box scores kind of fan; you'll be disappointed that there's no discography.

On the plus side, there's unsensationalized "everything you ever
Rob Hermanowski
Probably the best Lennon bio out there.
Isabel H.
By: Ray Coleman
106 pages

John Lennon was born on October 9, 1940 in Liverpool, England. When he was four years old, his parents separated and he ended up living with his Aunt Mimi. As a boy and young adult, John enjoyed drawing grotesque figures and cripples. He made it to art school, and was not allow to play Rock and Roll. In college, he met a woman named Cynthia Powell, who became his first wife. His mother died before his 18th birthday. John did not like to talk about the death of hi
Everything. This book makes you feel like you know everything, everything there is to know about John Lennon and makes you realize what a sad, sad world we live in without more of his amazing talent.
Jeff Reding
I've read Coleman's book at least three times and it it's my go-to book for post-Beatles information, mostly for release dates.
Tom Madej
I can't quite give the book 5 stars but it certainly rated 4. As a side note for you Beatle factoid nuts ( of who I am one )Coleman lays the sacking of Pete Best squarely at the feet of producer George Martin. I knew that Martin had had a session dummer sit in for Pete on an occasion or two. However, in this book Coleman says that Martin was the one who said Pete must go. Pete doesn't mention this in his book, "Beatle! The Pete Best Story". Pete's tales of the bands days in Hamburg, Germany, in ...more
Truly the definitive biography for the late great John Lennon

I remember reading my big fat red library edition of this book before my psych class started in high school. After discovering I was reading about Lennon, my psych teacher went in to a long discussion about where he was the night he heard Lennon was shot. Kind of set the mood for the rest of the day in that class... bummer.
AJ Griffin
Jul 03, 2007 AJ Griffin rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: people who hold candles and sing "imagine" on every Nov. 8th
When it comes to John Lennon, there are pretty much two kinds of biographies: the kind ones, and the nasty ones. This book falls into the former, but regardless of any favoritism it's probably the most comprehensive of the bunch. Part of my feels kind of pathetic for being qualified to make that statement.
If this is the definitive Lennon bio, we're in trouble. Seems like he was too close to the subject, and Yoko who he apologizes for a lot (altho perhaps she merits it?), to be critical at all. Altho he does hate the last album.

Some good stories, but not enough of them.
Doug Campbell
like with most books about john, this has many stories that are re-hashed over and over again. there are a fair amount of different takes on his life in this book, but many of them you (if you have been a fan of him or the beatles for any lenght of time.
Extremely detailed biography of John Lennon. It describes the larger than life Beatle in a very real way without any over zealous tones. It tends to be a little too detailed perhaps even for the biggest Lennon fans.
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
jb tomkinson
A very comprehensive biography of John Lennon. After I read the book, my perspective on John Lennon changed...also with Cynthia and Yoko
First bio I read about John....fairly balanced...the yin and yang...great book...couldn't put it down..
Matti Kari
suom. John Lennon

Aika tylsästi kirjoitettu, mutta paljon yksityiskohtia.
I'm still waiting for a good biography on Lennon.
Not sure how definitive it is.
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