Faber snaps up ‘vital’ portrait of Lennon and McCartney’s relationship

Faber snaps up ‘vital’ portrait of Lennon and McCartney’s relationship

Faber has landed Ian Leslie’s John and Paul: A Love Story in Twenty-three Songs, a "truly fascinating exploration" of the relationship between John Lennon and Paul McCartney.

Associate publisher Laura Hassan acquired UK and Commonwealth rights from Toby Mundy at Aevitas Creative. Faber plans to publish in autumn 2024.

The book will trace the evolution of the duo's band The Beatles, in addition to the period before and after the group disbanded. The synopsis explains: "John and Paul will be the first joint portrait of the iconic duo’s intense, volatile, madly creative relationship, tracing their shared journey before, during and after The Beatles to reveal rich insights into the nature of creativity, collaboration and human intimacy".

Leslie, author of Conflicted: Why Arguments Are Tearing Us Apart and How They Can Bring Us Together (Faber), will braid together the duo’s personal, music and professional bonds, drawing on the fields of human behaviour and communication.

Commenting on the new book, he said: "For all the words devoted to John Lennon and Paul McCartney, I don’t believe anyone has captured the truth about who they were, what they meant to each other and how they created together. I’m obsessed with their relationship, and I intend to make everyone else obsessed with it too. I can’t imagine a more perfect publisher for John and Paul than Faber & Faber."

Hassan said of the acquisition: "It should be impossible to say something new about The Beatles, shouldn't it? But Leslie has done it. The book will be a truly fascinating exploration of the alchemy between this iconic duo. It is a partnership that changed music forever, and this will be a vital book. Each chapter is anchored in a song that tells us something about the state of their relationship at the time, so reading this also made me appreciate the band's music afresh, which was an absolute joy."

Author and journalist Leslie started his career in advertising, where he worked as a strategist for some of the world’s biggest brands at advertising agencies in London and New York. His writing on psychology, technology, politics and business has appeared in the New Statesman, the Economist, the Guardian and the Financial Times. He recently wrote an article for the digital platform substack, celebrating McCartney.