Book Review: Rock & Roll Books
Reviewed by Margaret Moser, Fri., Nov. 30, 2007
Wonderful Tonight: George Harrison, Eric Clapton, and Meby Pattie Boyd with Penny Junor
Harmony Books, 321 pp. $25.95
Noted royals scribe Penny Junor jumped in bed with the ne plus ultra of rock muses, Pattie Boyd Harrison Clapton, for Wonderful Tonight, a sweet, sad memoir that rings true. As George Harrison's girlfriend, then wife, Boyd's blondness and English rose complexion was the embodiment of 1960s beauty. She floated through the swinging decade until she came heart to heart with love-struck guitar god Eric Clapton. Along the way, she'd inspired Harrison's wistful "Something" and the ravishing "Layla" by Clapton, but rock & roll songs aren't fairy tales with happily ever after endings. Wonderful Tonight layers her early life with enough details to make the casual reader start flipping pages until, oh, say ... the Beatles appear. And that's the payoff: how Boyd's path to inner peace led the Beatles to the Yogi, which changed Harrison into a distant, introspective cheat and paved the way for alcoholic, drug-addicted Clapton to win her then spurn her. At the worst, Boyd/Junor use a messy chronology that throws people and places out of context. Once the magical mystery rock star names vanish, Boyd turns the mirror inward, and the book becomes SFF – strictly for fans. By that time, you've read what you want to know.