The best biographies - to paraphrased George Orwell - can only be trusted when they reveal something disgraceful. This book pretends to offer a corrective that Lennon's later years resembled a modern day Howard Hughes locked in a drug induced coma and that he was manipulated by a devious, black magician in the guise of yoko ono. .
Unfortunately, the book is a Yoko Ono approved, sanitised version of Lennon. This official biography is in essence propaganda. The book trawls over old ground re the history of the Beatles and Lennon's solo years with nothing new to add of value. There are a couple of sentences near the end of the book which are startling: Sean Lennon is partially deaf in one ear due to being screamed at by John. the only glimpse in the book that Lennon was a very disturbed and troubled soul - the product of an appalling early childhood and his prolonged drug abuse. And a curt remark denigrating Julian's musical ambitions. The only real sustained reference to john's first family. He who controls the past, controls the future seems an appropriate epigraph for this book. Lennon is delineated as a musical genius who was too good for the Beatles. A travesty of the truth taking into account that from 1966 onwards, it was McCartney who sustained and kept the band together. This book is prostitution journalism, particularly with its gushing testimony that lennon's life was fulfilled by the undying and supportive love of Yoko. The sad truth was that both yoko and Lennon were narcissistic, self obsessed personalities who cocooned themselves in a world of drugs, affairs and mental illness.
The book is useful, but fundamentally insipid. You can pick this book up in the bargain basement of most book stores - next to the equally vacuous book by Philip Norman on The Rolling Stones.