Book Review: Baby’s In Black

Baby’s in Black is one of the first graphic novels I have reviewed. I’m not usually one to read them, but I really enjoyed this one.  The book is entirely done in Black and White, which I think really helped set the scene for the story.  The story is about The Beatles at the beginning of their career.  There’s John, Pete, George, Paul and Stuart.  Not the lineup we’re so used to hearing about.  They are playing in a club in Germany that not a lot of people freqent.  Klaus ends up checking them out and really loving the band so he drags his friend Astrid along the next night.
 
Astrid is a photographer and wants to photograph the band, and they agree.  She ends up falling in love with Stuart, they get engaged and he leaves the Beatles and ends up living with Astrid and pursuing art in her attic. (His real love, he was just in the band to help out John.)
 
I think that the graphic novel is a really interesting approach to tell this story – which is based on the true story of the beginning of the Beatles, by the way – rather than just using words which probably wouldn’t have made things quite as interesting.
 
If you like graphic novels and like music (especially the Beatles) then I would recommend that you check out this book. It’s really nicely done.
 
I received a free review e-copy of this book from the publisher through NetGalley.  I was not otherwise compensated.
 
About the Book
 
A fascinating, exhilarating portrait of the Beatles in their early years.
 
Meet the Beatles . . . right at the beginning of their careers.
 
This gorgeous, high-energy graphic novel is an intimate peek into the early years of the world’s greatest rock band. The heart of Baby’s In Black is a love story. The “fifth Beatle,” Stuart Sutcliffe, falls in love with the beautiful Astrid Kirchherr when she recruits the Beatles for a sensational (and famous) photography session during their time in Hamburg. When the band returns to the UK, Sutcliffe quits, becomes engaged to Kirchherr, and stays in Hamburg. A year later, his meteoric career as a modern artist is cut short when he dies unexpectedly.
 
The book ends as it begins, with Astrid, alone and adrift; but with a note of hope: her life is incomparably richer and more directed thanks to her friendship with the Beatles and her love affair with Sutcliffe. This tender story is rendered in lush, romantic black-and-white artwork.

Baby’s In Black is based on a true story.

Category: Book Review
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