If you're a man of a certain age you'll know there comes a point in life when getting a sports car and over-analysing your contribution to society sounds like a really good idea. With a good job in sales and marketing and a nice house in Manchester that he shared with his wife and kids, John Bishop was no different when he turned the dreaded 4-0. But instead of spanking a load of cash on a car that would have made him look like a senior stylist at Vidal Sassoon, he stumbled onto a pathway that ultimately lead him to become one of the nation's best loved comedians.
It was a gamble, but boy, did it pay off. How Did All This Happen? is the story of how a boy who, growing up on a council estate dreaming of ousting Kenny Dalglish from Liverpool FC's starting line-up, suddenly found himself on stage in front of thousands of people nationwide, at an age when he should have known better. In his own inimitable style, John guides us through his life from leaving the estate and travelling the globe on a shoe string, to marriage, kids and the split that led him to being on a stage complaining to strangers one night - the night that changed his life and started his journey to stardom.
Wonderfully entertaining and packed with colourful reminiscences and comical anecdotes, this is a heart-warming, life-affirming and ultimately very, very funny memoir from one of the nation's greatest comedians.
©2013 John Bishop (P)2013 HarperCollins Publishers Limited
Prepare for tears.
I picked this after David Mitchell's Back Story which was equally entertaining. What surprised me, or maybe I just don't read that many autobiographies, was their views on the marriages and love - beats any wedding vows or romantic movie lines I have ever heard. Still a very good laugh and the pace was great and John's accent is wonderful.
"A very unique and interesting life-story"
I didn't know much about John Bishop before reading this book - but was keen to read it after watching the TV programme about his Sport Relief challenge (which is covered in the final chapter).
This book is very well written, and keeps you enthralled throughout - what an interesting and unusual life he has had.
His reading style is, in places, a little 'flat' when compared to his live stand-up delivery but that is just a very minor thing - once you have tuned in to his Liverpool accent then this biography will have you gripped right to the end.
"You really need to know what happened"
Rarely does a book move me to tears and laughter so easily. This is one of the very few. Quite simply, because I don't want to be responsible for spoilers, if you've watched JB live, on TV or wherever and he's struck a chord, you literally need to read or listen to this book. It's beautifully written, emotionally narrated - entertaining, moving and inspirational all at once. It's one of the best autobios I've read/heard for a long time. I'm 10+ years younger than JB but a lot of his memories and desciptions of his earlie life wrought memories long buried. Enjoy.
"Really natural performance"
I've like John Bishop as a performer since the very beginning of his TV career. Fascinating to listen to the man talking about himself in such an open, affable way.
Full of surprises, trials and tribulations and a frankness that will make you laugh and cry.
All of them
Yes definitely. Had no idea that the Bish had done so much!
"One of the better comedian biographies."
If they were interested in stand up or John Bishop, Its emotive and portrays the route to stand up in a detailed fashion.
When i read a stand ups biography i want to here about there hankering for there craft, first steps to stand up and details of the journey to becoming recognised. This book does that better than most i have read.
There was a lovely segment at the start where the author and narrator introduces himself and current surroundings, this feels like a cheeky little bonus. It also does as intended and breaks the ice before the book begins.
The book does not fall into the trap of glossing over the route to stand up, instead the second half details this interspersed with how it affected home and work life. Bizzarely this was a bit emotional at times due to the open nature of the writing.
i didnt feel things were being held back and for once i felt i was reading about a standup who truly loved his job and wasnt using it as a stepping stone to tv.
There was the usual born, school, work story which unless your a John Bishop fan may not particularly interest you. This may just be me but im a touch bored with all the samey back stories.
Overall This is a very good biography of a stand up comedian, if you have read and enjoyed the other ones then this will easily fit in to your top five.
"Great Audio Book"
What a great guy down to earth and you can really relate to his story, especially if you are a Liverpudlian.
"A Rollercoaster read"
This is a brilliant book! Of all the audio autobiographies I've enjoyed, this is my favourite.
It contains a lot of emotion, that at times as the listener draws you in so deep, you feel the same feelings and as he does. I lost count of the times I chuckled or laughed out loud, and the amount of times I genuinely welled up and tried not to cry, or the times where I didn't hold back and blubbed like a baby. Not because it's sad but because of the raw emotions you can hear in his voice as he re tells the story.
Listen to it! You will love it!
"Different to what I expected"
Far more than his stand up. Bish is a man of substantial depth. Quite inspiring
"Really enjoyed it"
I have recently started listening to autobiographys by comedians and I was really looking forward to this one. John didn't disappoint!
I've watched John on the TV countless times and have been to see him live but I never knew the history of how he came to be doing what he does today.
I was hooked, it was like he was telling me his story. I had tears in my eyes and a lump in my throat when he told me all about the sport relief challenge.
Yes his accent is at times dull but you know what? I still enjoyed it!!
"John Bishop's done a lot more than you think!"
Yes, theres more to John than meets the eye.
Not sure really
The world tour on a bike
Not to spoil anything but the reason he had to fly home mid journey
I was expecting lots of hilarious stories from start to finish but the balance of the book is great with some funny bits and genuinely heart-breaking moments. A good read all round.
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