Book summary

Former Beatle roadie Mal Evans lies in a Los Angeles apartment in January 1976, dying of a gunshot wound. His life has spiraled downward since his beloved band broke up in 1970 – failed job opportunities, drug abuse and a pending divorce. And throughout those six years, as he fell further into despair, he has always asked himself:

What if?

What if he could have done something to keep the Beatles, and his life, together?

Instead of dying, Mal finds himself transported back to 1969. The war in Vietnam is coming to a boil, “Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid” is in theaters, and the Beatles are still together. He has an opportunity to right the wrongs that ripped apart the world’s greatest band.

While he succeeds in keeping the band together, helping to create new Beatles albums for the world to hear (“Imagine” and “Live and Let Die” are Beatles songs!), he finds that fate is plotting to reverse his world. Paul and John quarrel constantly; George is consumed by self-doubt; Ringo has trouble living up to the Beatle name.

And Mal, in the middle of it all, must work to keep the fantasy alive, trying to avoid the same mistakes he made the first time while avoiding the grasp of Death, which continues to pursue him in his new life.