Kamloops, British Columbia, Canada | Member Since 2011
A beautiful 'slim volume' ostensibly about his father but also containing some wonderful insights into his own impressive acting career on the stage. I have never seen him on the stage and am unlikely to, living where I do; however, he is going to be in The Magistrate by Pinero live in HD from the National Theater London. Jan 2113-check your local listings.
This book describes Phyllida Law's care of her dementing mother in Scotland while she was trying to sustain an acting career from her home in London. It is a glorious book full of gentle and rip roaring humor in the face of what must have been dreadful to witness. Phyllida had already cared for her mother-in law who was very deaf at the same time she was raising Emma and Sophie Thompson her actress daughters.Husband and father,Eric Thompson ( Magic Roundabout narrator for any Brits reading this) died very young.
Phyllida has the most expressive, beautiful voice and narrates her exquisite prose to perfection. I listened to this book without a break and have bought another audible because she is narrating it.
I have to admit to having been unable to read Sophie's choice and almost couldn't watch the end of the movie. What first drew me to Styron was his small volume on depression, Visible Darkness expanded from an article in the New Yorker. I never lent a copy that came back: I must have 'given' over a dozen away. Styron broke new ground writing from the perspective of someone who suffered from debilitating depression compounded by liberal use of alcohol. Alexandra grew up grounded by her mother Rose with a brilliant,difficult mercurial father. As a contemporary of Plimpton and Mailer he moved in high, rabble rousing literary, society and this aspect is fascinating. This is not a Mommy Dearest rant,rather a literate, thoughtful telling of a daughter's struggle to understand her father. That she loved him there is no doubt. Alexandra's training in the theater makes her an intelligent and clear narrator.
My daughter read this and gave up less that half way through. I think you have to hear her deliver her own prose. She is a master. I adore her. I get her humor even though I'm not a New Yorker but I am an ex smoker. She makes me laugh out loud. She writes very well-although I understand she had a long period of writer's block. Until I read this I thought she was famous just for being all over the social pages of Vanity Fair. I hope she writes and narrates more for 'our listening pleasure'.
I was so looking forward to this listen as it came highly recommended;however I think my friend had read it rather than listened to it. Rick does himself a huge disservice by reading it himself. He isn't a natural reader and his delivery is irritating. He also is just not funny when he's reading passages he obviously thinks should have us rolling in the aisles.I gave up after His Russian escapade.Rick should have kept to his day job.
I should have known better. Mr. West is younger than I but writes, reads and uses humor as I remember it in the 1950's- pretentious and pompous and unimaginative. He is maddeningly discrete about fellow thespians ( nudge nudge wink wink). I didn't get any sense of enthusiasm for what he has achieved and had a definite sense that he feels under appreciated.On the one hand he accepts the title 'second tier' actor but on the other he bemoans the lack of television roles. On the whole I think he was a reluctant author and probably wrote for the royalties. I think Prunella Scale's version would have been much more interesting.
Simon Callow gives us a glimpse of his life enriched by readings of previously published erudite,funny,detailed and thoughtful pieces ranging from Newspaper reviews to eulogies for colleagues both living and dead. His voice is quite wonderful, his sense of humor delicious and his compassion endless. He is self deprecating and discrete about his personal life. There are extremely interesting ( to me) essays about acting and directing techniques, Stanislavski, Wells, Hall. Gielguid, Schofield and Richardson to mention just a few. This book has sent me off on a hunt for many of the books he cites and quotes from. To me this is is what a good autobiography should do. I listened to it three times and like all favorite books,can't bear to finish it and so the last half hour remains unheard.
If you remember 'Pete and Dud' from their television days and before they both got seduced by the rest of the world you will love this. The sketches are as fresh and achingly funny as they were first time round. Dud and Pete in the Art Gallery had me crying with laughter (again). The phrase 'because I never had the Latin',in the the sketch in which Pete bemoans the fact that he couldn't get to be a Judge has been a family joke whenever we make an excuse for not doing something. You have to imagine the pair in old raincoats and cloth caps to full appreciate what is going on.
I think the author thought that the addition of recipes would lift the book to literary heights. Although she lived through the war in Italy she had a relatively comfortable life with not as many hardships as most of the rest of Europe. It didn't inspire much admiration. The book was saved for me by the wonderful narration. I remember Rula doing the Alberto V.O 5 ads in the 1980s. My kids and I loved her voice.The weekend I finished it I was at my local Farmer's Market and found fresh nettles. I made the risotto. It was lovely.
It's hard to comment on the author because I found the narration of the book almost impossible to follow. It's too fast and often muffled.I had to check that my MP3 player was not playing the book too fast. I love Russian literature and detective stories and hoped that this would be a perfect combination.
No. I gave up half way because of the narration.
No particular name but someone who could enunciate clearly.
For me this was a waste of money and I'm glad that I bought it 'on sale' and not with a monthly credit
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