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Everyone's Gone to the Moon Hardcover – April 16, 1996

3.7 out of 5 stars 3 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Set in London during the Pop heyday of the 1960s, Everyone's Gone to the Moon gives us Louis Brennan, a naive but talented young reporter who has been recruited from a small-time daily to work for The Sunday Dispatch, London's most prestigious weekend newspaper. The job lands him smack in the middle of many of the mod era's golden moments, including recording sessions for "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band" and the Rolling Stones' notorious drug bust.

From Publishers Weekly

The "Mod" London of the 1960s provides the background for this deliciously wry satire of British journalism by bestselling author Norman (Shout: The True Story of the Beatles; Symphony for the Devil). Louis Brennan, an ambitious young reporter holed up in a backwater town in Northern England, finally lands a spot at the London Sunday Dispatch's ultra-chic glossy magazine. But competition is intense, and he finds himself floundering in his search for a legitimate scoop in the magazine's politically charged atmosphere. He is encouraged by his crony, Jack Shildrick, formerly his boss in the provinces and now editor of the Dispatch. When their solidarity is infiltrated by Fran Dyson, an apparently diffident yet poisonously manipulative young secretary, Louis and Jack find themselves jockeying for her affections, with potentially disastrous results. Meanwhile, Louis is becoming aware of office politicking and also increasingly immersing himself in the campy culture of 1960s London, pulsing with free love, funky fashions and Mod music. Norman seems to have total recall of that cultural milieu, and he recreates it with verve. Eventually, Louis learns to master for himself the first truth of tabloid journalism: that clever words and minds can create news that the public will accept as such, never mind the dutiful reporting of more factual papers. Norman's prose positively reels with a distinctly British humor and sharp satirical edge, and his large roster of deftly rendered characters (with some real celebrities thrown in) remains engaged in furious action without a moment of letdown. It's a wicked portrait of an era and a screamingly good read.
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 437 pages
  • Publisher: Random House; 1st U.S. ed edition (April 16, 1996)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0679448314
  • ISBN-13: 978-0679448310
  • Product Dimensions: 1.2 x 6.8 x 9.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.8 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,665,650 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Top Customer Reviews

By A. Ross HALL OF FAMETOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on August 26, 1999
Format: Hardcover
I picked this book off the library shelf because of the bright cover and took it home because the jacket copy promised a funny book centered on Fleet street in 1966. The book does deliver on its promise to take one back to London's "swinging sixties" but the story itself is a wee bit flat. The hero is a young journalist who makes it out of a small town newspaper and onto the staff of England's trend setting Sunday magazine where he must cope with all kinds of nasty folks. There is a "super-journalist" mentor who turns out not to be as great a fellow as the naive hero thinks. There is a beautiful but duplicitous girlfriend, and any number of backbiting, catty people. Indeed, few characters are rendered sympathetically. The author is apparently an authority on music of the era, which allows him to slip The Beatles and Jimi Hendrix into the book (Liz Taylor and Richard Burton also make an appearance). All in all, I think this would have been a lot more enjoyable had I lived in London during the era (or at least maybe been alive), 'cos I didn't find the book nearly as funny as other reviewers did.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
"Everyone's Gone to the Moon" reads like sort of a fictionalized look at writer Philip Norman's adventures as a young journalist at the London Times' Sunday Magazine back in the '60s, and details some of the reasons why he gave up being a journalist and went into writing non-fiction (like the Beatles biography "Shout"). Along with the behind-the-scenes details about working at the paper, the office politics, etc., the reader gets to "meet" The Beatles, Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Marianne Faithfull, and other members of the British "Swinging 60's." These meetings are sometimes personal and are warmly remembered. But the hero gets frustrated with his job and the lack of rewards, the lack of direction of his paper, and heads out on his own. One disappointment -- I kept expecting the hero to tell off his bosses and put them in their place, but he never does. But for the '60s snapshots, it's priceless.
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Format: Hardcover
The language used in the novel works wonderfully within the setting of Fleet Street journalism. The only thing lacking in this novel is further insight into the mind of Louis, a smart but constantly taken advantage of character. Readers will be delightfully entertained with his detailed and entertaining observations and accounts. His obsessions with clothes, music and the city of London a highlight. Although essential to the plot, his times within the Sunday Dispatch can prove frustrating for both Louis and reader!
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