Lars Saabye Christensen
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Buy *Beatles* by Lars Saabye Christensen online

Lars Saabye Christensen
Arcadia Books
784 pages
April 2010
rated 3 1/2 of 5 possible stars

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This coming-of-age story talks about what four Norwegians would do if they could be The Beatles. The author is a veteran writer of a dozen books. This one follows four friends growing up in Oslo in the 1960s and how their lives change when the first hear The Beatles. Kim, Gunnar, Ola and Seb want to be The Beatles, and each one adopts one of the Fab Four's names: John, Paul, George and Ringo, of course. They start their own band - The Snafus - and band together as they deal with meeting girls, getting through school, doing the "booze and dope thingies," getting into fights and becoming engaged in the politics of the day.

Ultimately, The Snafus break up and the four characters are forced to move away from each other. They have learned their life lessons; now they must deal with new relationships and the real task of growing up.

This is a fun book, though the translation comes at you in stabs and tears at times. Here are a few lines from "I Feel Fine, Spring 1965" (each chapter bears the name of a Beatles song):

I am sitting in a summer house and it is autum. My right hand is irritating me, stitches everywhere, and my index finger in particular. It is crooked, bent like a claw. I cannot stop looking at it. It is clinging to a ballpoint pen, which writes in red ink. It is an uncommonly hideous finger. It's a shame I am not left-handed, I once wished I were left-handed and played the bass guitar."
Beatles is an international bestseller and has been called the most famous book in Norway. Take a read and see what everybody is on about.

Originally published on Curled Up With A Good Book at Steven Rosen, 2010

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