A book I should have read long ago when I bought it after it was first released, Once Upon a Time in Liverpool by Judith Kristen and illustrated by Eric Cash was published November 16, 2012. According to the copyright page, the printing of this book was limited to 1000 copies. You can still find new copies on Amazon and on Eric Cash’s website, so I sent a couple emails last week to find out if the book did go into a second printing, but I never got an answer.
Once Upon A Time In Liverpool is a 40 page children’s book that is as wonderful to look at as it is to read. After spending the past several weeks reading a lot of different children’s books about The Beatles, I believe this one is the must have for any parent introducing their children to the Beatles for the first time, or for any Beatles book collector. Between Eric’s amazing retro styled paintings & long history of painting the Beatles, matched with Judith’s skills at writing children’s books, these two seem to have found the right combination to tell the story properly! Each Beatle is introduced to the reader with their birth date, parents, where in Liverpool they were born and what schools they attended. The readers is then lead through each of their lives as they came together to be the Fab Four that we know today. They even include Pete Best and Stuart Sutcliff in their little book. Just Fab! And for that reason…
I rate this book, 4 out of 4 Beetles!
Best of the Beatles: The Sacking of Pete Best by Spencer Leigh is the revised edition of Leigh’s 1998 book – Drummed Out: The Sacking of Pete Best. Mr. Leigh is a well known BBC radio show host and the author and co-author of over 30 books about British pop music and culture.
I hadn’t read Spencer Leigh’s original book about Pete Best being fired from the Beatles, so this book was completely new to me. And even though there were no new theories as to why the Fab Four tossed Pete for Ringo that I hadn’t already heard, I still found this book enjoyable. Mr. Leigh did a great job of pulling quotes from his various BBC interviews over the decades, along with research from books and new interviews to bring all the theories together to shine light on the true reason for the firing.
Along with theories, this book also contains a Postscript with all the new information that was discovered after the writing of the first book. There you’ll find, what I consider, the only new revelation and it concerns Raymond Jones, the young man that was the first person to walk into NEMS and request a copy of the Beatles singing ‘My Bonnie‘ with Tony Sheridan. There is also a chapters for the discography of Pete playing with the Beatles and another for Ringo’s discography.
Author and BBC radio show host – Spencer Leigh
The only problem I found with this well-written, quick and easy to read book was that I didn’t feel that the author ever really came to one absolutely conclusion as to why Ringo replaced Pete as the drummer for what was to become the greatest rock band the world has ever known. And for that reason…
I rate this book, 3 out of 4 Beetles!