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  • John Lennon 1980

  • The Last Days in the Life
  • By: Kenneth Womack
  • Narrated by: Paul Woodson
  • Length: 10 hrs and 32 mins
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars (186 ratings)

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John Lennon 1980 cover art

John Lennon 1980

By: Kenneth Womack
Narrated by: Paul Woodson
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Summary

The story of the legendary musician’s incredible last year.

John Lennon 1980 traces the powerful, life-affirming story of the former Beatle’s remarkable comeback after five years of self-imposed retirement. Lennon’s final pivotal year would climax in several moments of creative triumph as he rediscovered his artistic self in dramatic fashion. With the bravura release of the Double Fantasy album with wife, Yoko Ono, he was poised and ready for an even brighter future only to be wrenched from the world by an assassin’s bullets. John Lennon 1980 isn’t about how the gifted songwriter died, but rather, about how he lived.

©2020 Omnibus Press (P)2020 Blackstone Publishing

What listeners say about John Lennon 1980

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

A fitting Tribute

As a Lennon fan of over 40 years now, I am always a little cautious about the author's intent when it comes to biographies of the late Beatle. Scandal sells, and I've no interest in that. But I've also no interest in blind hero worship either.

This book never falls in to either trap. It feels like a relatively honest account of Lennon's last year. Never over playing either his gifts or his demons, instead the author delivers a very human story. I like bios where we're always fully aware that the subject dresses by putting on his trousers one leg at a time . John Lennon was certainly a flawed man, but that puts him in good company with the rest of humanity.

It's both comforting and sad to read how happy and enthusiastic he was about life and the future in late 1980. A beautifully read listen.

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3 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

A bit patchy

Like Lennon’s post Beatles career this book has patches of interesting bits but largely mediocre.

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1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Disappointing

Sorry but this was boring. Did not like narrator's voice, the detail was of little significance. Some insight into the privileged world of John Lenton and Yoko Ono.

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Very interesting but desperately sad.

If you’re a fan of John Lennon, I’m sure you find this very interesting. As we all know, the ending is desperately sad. Thankfully we are saved too many gory details to concentrate on what his life was like in those last few years.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

excellent listen.

excellent listen. very interesting, sad and funny at the same time. can recommend this title.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

Gold dust for John fans

Not just 1980, this was a great insight into the great man’s life throughout most of the 70s. I have been fascinated by John for nearly 40 years and I felt closer to him in this book than any other biography.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Enjoyable and Informative

This book provides an insight into John’s final year, focusing on interesting little details previously unknown to me. Really good.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Amazing!

A wonderful journey. A celebration of Johns life and those around him. As a fan I found myself smiling, laughing and getting upset too. 10+ hours is a big community it’s worth it even just to have the smallest insight into his genius! RIP John

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  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

Dreadful and Sanitised

Even allowing for the fact that this is far more a hagiography than a biography, Womack is simply a hack of an author whose writing has very little subtlety or nuance. Lennon is painted almost as a saint, living the dream, and his documented use of drugs and his gaunt appearance in 1980 are flippantly skated over, as for the most part are the many psychological difficulties which dogged his life, What's more, Womack uses the expression "without skipping a beat" about fifty times during the book, which strongly suggests he doesn't carefully edit or do proper redrafts. Having read countless Beatles and solo Beatles biographies, some very good indeed, this stands out as being amongst the worst. Lennon is a two dimensional character exactly in the mould of the Lennon-Ono narrative of 1980. So, when the end arrives, there's little sadness or mourning because the real John Lennon isn't present here. That shocking day in December of 1980 is devalued by this saintly caricature of a man whose complex life deserved far more than Womack's lightweight fanboy treatment.

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  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Unfortunately badly put together

The attention to detail is really good but the way the narrator butchers the French language with his mispronunciation of the word “penchant” was really off putting. It’s an informative listen but the way that the writer jumps from one decade to another constantly makes it hard to keep track of where you are in the timeline. That and the narrator’s dreary voice made it hard to concentrate fully on the content. I got half way through and gave up. Partly because every time the word penchant was miss pronounced it would draw my attention away from the story and I’d miss great big chunks. But mostly because it was difficult to keep track of where you are in the stream of time. One minute you’re listening to stuff that happened in the early 70’s then it’ll jump to the 60’s and then on to the late 70’s/early 80’s. But because the narrator has such a dreary voice it’s easy to miss the times and dates.

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