The Beatles: The Biography
 

Yeah! Yeah! Yeah! The Beatles, Beatlemania, and the Music That Changed the World

Bob Spitz, Author
Bob Spitz, Author . Little, Brown $18.99 (234p) ISBN 978-0-316-11555-1
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This hip and comprehensive rock biography captures the spirit and talent that made the Fab Four an international sensation. Spitz, who wrote The Beatles: The Biography (2005) for the adult market (from which some material in this volume is adapted), begins with the story of how a friend introduced two aspiring musicians, John Lennon and Paul McCartney. “ 'I think you two will get along,’ [the friend] said to John, perhaps the understatement of all time.” A chatty but thorough narrative chronicles each member’s family life, the group’s various incarnations (the Quarry Men, the Silver Beetles), their big break with a gig in Hamburg, Germany, and the storied road that followed, through their breakup in 1970. The book does not avoid the group’s darker moments—drug use, the death of manager Brian Epstein and other controversies—although the positive notes linger. In one memorable episode, the group is awestruck when they first meet Elvis, who remarked, “If you guys are just gonna sit there and stare at me, I’m goin’ to bed.” Spitz examines how the Beatles fit into the larger rock revolution taking place, but focuses on the indelible mark their music, style and celebrity made on pop culture. A crisp, modern design and superb b&w photography support the narrative, which should easily enthrall a new generation of fans. Ages 8-12. (Oct.)

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