They don't come over as bastards, just four blokes from unremarkable backgrounds (flicking through it I come upon the bit where Lennon says Ringo had only been to school for two days thanks to his childhood illnesses) who suddenly find themselves bulleted into a position no humans had ever been in before and somehow deal with it. It's not the most joined-up narrative. Instead Braun just records what people said amid the chaos.
It's as if the window is just closing on their real lives and henceforth we will only be able to see them through clouds of myth. It starts in the bar of the ABC in Cambridge.
In another corner John Lennon is sipping a coke which he keeps replenishing with Scotch.
"How long do you think the group will last?" somebody asks.
"About five years."
"Will the group stay together?"
"Don't know," says Mr Lennon and pours another Scotch into the coke.
The other two important books about The Beatles are Ian Macdonald's Revolution in the Head: The Beatles' Records and the Sixties, which is all about the music, and Peter Doggett's You Never Give Me Your Money: The Battle For The Soul Of The Beatles, which is all about what happened afterwards.