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The John Lennon Letters: Edited and with an Introduction by Hunter Davies
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John Lennon was a writer as well as a musician. It was entirely natural for him to put pen to paper whenever he had an idea, a thought, a reaction or a desire to communicate.
He lived – and died – in an age before emails and texts. Pen and ink was what he turned to. John wrote letters and postcards all of his life; to his friends, family, strangers, newspapers, organisations, lawyers and the laundry – most of which were funny, informative, campaigning, wise, mad, poetic, anguished and sometimes heartbreaking. For the first time, John’s widow, Yoko Ono, has given permission to publish a collection of his letters. The Editor is the Beatles’ official biographer, Hunter Davies, who knew John well.
John’s letters are in a way something of a mystery – where are they all? Over the years many have come up at auction, then been sold to dealers and collectors. Or they have been kept by the recipients, locked up safely. It has been a wonderful piece of detective work tracing many of these 250 letters, postcards and notes, which are arranged in chronological order, so that a narrative builds up, reflecting John’s life. It is also highly visual – in a sense that many of the letters are reproduced as they were, in his handwriting or typing, plus the odd cartoon or doodle. THE JOHN LENNON LETTERS is fundamentally a book to read and study, providing a unique insight into the mind of one of the great figures of our times.
John Lennon was, as one of The Beatles and the composer of many of their greatest songs, one of the most famous people of the 20th century. He died aged 40 in 1980. Hunter Davies, the editor of the letters, is the author of the only ever authorised biography of the Beatles, as well as THE BEATLES LYRICS. He lives in London, NW5.
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