Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Death of a Dreamer: The Assassination of John Lennon by Alison Marie Behnke

The world was used to seeing headlines about John Lennon. As a member of the band The Beatles, he had sold millions of albums and had fans all over the globe who wanted to know his every move. Attention continued over the years, from his relationship with Yoko Ono to the breakup of the Beatles to his solo career and his appeals for world peace. But in December 1980 people were shocked by a new headline: John Lennon was dead. He had been murdered outside of his home in New York. How could this have happened? Death of a Dreamer looks at John, his legacy, and his untimely death.

Death of a Dreamer isn't just the story of John Lennon, even though he's the only one on the cover; a closer reading of the title makes this clear. It's about his death, or his assassination, and in order to tell that story it's necessary to tell the story of his assassin, Mark David Chapman. While many of the details of Lennon's life (both before and after the Beatles) were familiar to me, the information about Chapman was new. While still carefully written for a young audience, it's a chilling look at a very disturbed man. When the story of this man is combined with the story of a man who wanted to change the world with his music, the tragic results just seem so senseless.

I read an advance review copy from NetGalley courtesy of Lerner Publishing.

Find it at Amazon.

Read it with:
Real Love: The Drawings for Sean by John Lennon
John's Secret Dreams by Doreen Rappaport
Pope John Paul II by Alison Behnke
Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger

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