Back in October at LA’s Fest for Beatles Fans, I was taking a final gallop through the merch bazaar before Kate came to pick me up. A few final hugs and handshakes for vendors I’d spoken with or seen talk about their books; a quick glance here and there to see if there had been anything I missed. Frankly, I’d already spent too much and was determined not to spend any more — and then I found a charming book called “Where’s Ringo?”
It’s a lively Waldo-style hunt-and-find, with each detail-crammed illustration taking place at another stage of The Beatles’ career. The progenitor of this fun idea is Andrew Grant Jackson, and we swapped Publishing Horror Stories as he signed my copy. I’m giving it to my nephew for Christmas — he’s a smart kid of seven, and I wouldn’t be surprised if “Where’s Ringo?” is where he’ll start to absorb all the facts and fantasies that knit us all together in true Beatlefandom.
“Did you know that Ringo almost DIED as a kid?”
“Who was Edgar Allen Poe?”
“Why did the Beatles break up?”
Oh, Paddy, that’s a long answer. Start here.
Anyway, because the Beatles’ story is what it is, parts of “Where’s Ringo?” might be a wee bit adult for your kid. My own experience as a youngster was that I only got the references that made sense to me, and the other stuff blossomed at a later date. (My team of therapists might disagree.) The illustrations are great fun, the text is lively — I’m glad I took one last look before stepping out into the warm, jetfuel-scented morning…