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Life, Death and Vanilla Slices Paperback – 5 Jul 2012


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Product details

  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Sphere (5 July 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1847444938
  • ISBN-13: 978-1847444936
  • Product Dimensions: 15.3 x 2.6 x 24.5 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (236 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 225,131 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Jenny Eclair is an extremely popular broadcaster, comedian and actor. She is the sole female winner of the Perrier Award, and often features on BBC radio and television.

Product Description

Review

Very dark and very funny. I had it glued to my face until I'd finished it (Jo Brand)

Of course it's funny, but it's also dark, honest and totally compulsive reading (Jenny Colgan)

Utterly compelling, brave, angry and melancholy all at once. It is brutal about the female experience, but also beautifully observed about the subtle complexities of being a woman. I thought Jean was an amazing character - and it is testament to Jenny's skill as a writer that despite some awful behaviour, the reader never actually loses sympathy for her. Most of all, it's just a great, honest piece of writing. I want to read her others now (Jojo Moyes)

Book Description

* Brilliant black comedy from the ultimate Grumpy Old Woman!

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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

43 of 45 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on 10 July 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Having raved over Camberwell beauty and Having a lovely time,I have regularly searched for,yet lamented, that Jenny Eclair had decided to write no more novels. It was sheer delight to stumble across this little gem! In my opinion it is even better than the others. The characters are instantly alive from the opening chapters. The story line is powerful. It interweaves characters and lives,both past and present. Hilarious,with witty,succinct descriptions yet equally poignant. As we get to know these people better,we are able to understand them the more and forgive them their transgressions.

My Sister and I are completely hooked on Jenny Eclair and we have long chats about her books. I think this Novel will take readers by storm.
Please do not leave it so long for the next one and furthermore can we have her other works in Kindle format?
Read it,review it,and put on the pressure if like us you are amazed by such talent!
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on 20 July 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Have greatly enjoyed Jenny's previous books and the new one doesn't disappoint.

A real page turner, I couldn't put it down, but did't want to finish it either. There was total realism in the unfolding stories of Anne and Jean, and unlike many books, here was one where you really cared about the characters and what happened to them.

Jenny's style is so natural, her narrative so beautifully crafted, that she is a total joy to read.

a definite five star book. Please give us more !
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28 of 30 people found the following review helpful By Mr. B. Hargreaves on 5 July 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Bought for me - fantastic surprise - a reall book not chic lit - real themes - sad funny tragic- laughed cried and thought. Really original and entertaining and massively shocking at end. Her writing is far more erudite and considered than stage persona. Better and more literate than previous books. Great story and involving characters. Super stuff !
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Katharine Kirby TOP 100 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 21 Oct. 2013
Format: Paperback
Meet muddled Anne, a middle-aged mess. Her surgeon husband Paul is immune to her, her sons ignore and patronise her. Anne's past is rocky, her back story a cause of huge regret, debilitating guilt.

Wry and realistic, recognisable and raw, Jenny Éclair brushes away pretence, she knows people aren't perfect. They have to live with mystery, misery and unresolved situations.

With Anne's domestic life increasingly deteriorating despite her dream kitchen and safe set up,`wine o'clock' arriving earlier all the time; her mother Jean soldiers bravely on up north, nursing her shattered heart. Crunch time comes literally when Jean steps in front of the traffic and is taken to hospital where she lies in a coma, mentally housekeeping her memories and sorting out her affairs, an unseen activity, but happily we are allowed in on the action.

Anne has to rush away from London and face up to her past. This totally honest, believable, sharply observed action, catches us up with her touring her old school that is being turned into flats, once again standing at the bus stop in the cold, trying not to pry into her mother's private life, while staying in her home...

Meanwhile the innermost thoughts of her sons and husband are funny, touching, and completely human.

More of a bus ride than a rollercoaster, Jenny Éclair's witty, clever, unique voice rings in your ear as you read, a really enjoyable experience, I am still thinking about Drew, Nat, Jools, Paul, Ellen even.. they were are real as my own family. Sizzling Sibling Rivalry at it's sorriest. With a soundtrack of a sewing machine, I could hear it myself.

I would love another book, or even a chapter about this lot, they have me in their grip. The ending was a little rushed, I kept looking at the number of pages and wondering how she was going to fit it all in. Off to buy a Vanilla Slice, and another Jenny Eclair book, it's one of those days!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Spencey on 21 July 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Heard about this book on the Graham Norton radio show when Jenny Eclair was a guest. Couldn't put it down once I started. Not an over complexed story but one of those stories that you have to get to the end of and what a twist at the end - realy enjoye it. But god help any mums out there who have boys like Anne's.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Highly-Strung on 18 Aug. 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I devoured this book over two nights. It was totally amazing. Jenny has once again shown she has a real talent for fiction. Her acute observations of fraught family relationships, class differences and Middle Class anxieties combine beautifully with a compelling plot, deft characterisation and pathos mixed with laugh out loud funny one liners. More fiction please, Jenny. Her knack of getting her characters to voice what people fearfully leave unsaid is exceptional and shows a woman who's observational skills are immense. This book is a gem.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Lynne p on 30 July 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I really enjoyed this ,I just could not put it down. I can't wait to read more of Jenny's books. The characters feel real and there are so many things to make you laugh and cry especially if you are of a similar age to Anne....
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Clare Brokenshire on 16 July 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I found this novel very absorbing, highly entertaining and extremely thought-provoking. I could identify with the main character in many ways, but you don't have to be menopausal with teenage kids and elderly parents to connect with this book. Some of it was so laugh-out-loud funny, but always true to life. The themes of sibling jealousy, liking one kid more than another, confronting one's parents' deaths were dealt with extremely sensitively, as was the idea that we may have many 'selves' throughout our lives, some of which may not be particularly likeable. But the twists and turns of the plot also made the book an extremely satisfying read. Brilliant!
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