Imagine This Growing up with my brother John Lennon (2007) is a very personal and revealing story as recounted by Julia Baird, from her own perspective of growing up as Lennons half-sister.
Julia's a very talented writer, and has really brought her lovely mother to life to me through her honest and heartfelt words, sharing her precious childhood memories (often tinged with tragedy and loss) in a very intimate and moving way.
If you want to know about John Lennon, I mean really know, if you want all the Hamburg stories, how he met Yoko and so on, there are plenty of books out there about that. He clearly loved his sisters a lot, even though his aunt Mimi didn't want him to see them. Aunt Mimi took John away from his mother, even though Julia begged her to give him back and did what she could to get him back. Aunt Mimi said no because Julia was living with Bobby, whom she was not married to. So she took John off to live at "the House of Correction" as Mimi called her own home (how horrible is that!). So it was OK for Mimi to have an affair, but not for Julia to live with the man she loved and had two children with. John bought a house for his sisters - who are not allowed to move in. *Regarding John and Yoko's bed-ins for peace, his sister says that, It was unreal, and how on earth did they get away with it? When John moved to New York he wanted to stay in touch with his family. Later on, after John's death, the house he had bought for his sisters was now Yoko's property. The sisters call Yoko to tell her that John bought the house for them, that it is now a symbol of John's love for them. The last time Julia is on the phone with Yoko, trying to explain to her how important that house is to the sisters, Yoko answers, "You hardly knew John. John LOVED his mother and sisters. John had been on the phone with them, having long conversations with them, while he was living in New York (before Yoko became Ruler of the Phone). Bobby, Julia's husband and the father of John's sisters, is very likable in the book. In the book he loved John and tried to get him to live with him and Julia. P.S. By "Lennon family" I basically mean his aunts, none of whom were called Lennon, but lets keep things simple, shall we?
Matt Greenhalgh (screenwriter for the film Nowhere Boy) Imagine This is written by John Lennons half-sister, Julia Baird. There are countless Lennon books out in the marketplace, including a book Baird co-authored with Geoffrey Giuliano called John Lennon My Brother (to read about Giulianos lawsuit over the film Nowhere Boy click here). These books have been her attempt to make sense of my own life and that of my half-brother, John.
All through the book is the impact of this loss on John, Julia and their sister Julia.
At the epicentre of the whirlwind is Baird's and John's mother, Julia Lennon, who's personality, life struggles and spirit has clearly guided and touched her daughters biographical account, that finally exposes the truth and family secrets, exhumed into print for the first time.