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The Sound of Laughter Paperback – 5 Jul 2007

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Product details

  • Paperback: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Arrow (5 July 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 009950555X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0099505556
  • Product Dimensions: 13 x 2.2 x 19.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (231 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 16,408 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Peter Kay was born in Bolton in 1973. After leaving school with a GCSE in art, he held a series of jobs including working as a cinema usher, mobile disc jockey, in a factory packing toilet rolls, garage attendant and in a bingo hall.

Since winning the prestigious North West Comedian of the Year in 1996 , Peter has firmly established himself as one of Britain's best loved comedians. Winning numerous awards for his work, including four British comedy awards and three awards from the Royal Television Society.

Amongst other work, Peter wrote, directed and starred in That Peter Kay Thing, Max & Paddy's Road to Nowhere, the BAFTA-award winning Phoenix Nights and, most recently, Britain's Got the Pop Factor... and Geraldine - The Winner's Story.

His autobiography The Sound of Laughter is the UK's bestselling hardback autobiography of all time with over 1 million copies sold.

Product Description

Review

"His autobiography is filled to the very brim with funny bits" (heat)

"He is every bit as amusing on the page as he is in person... Hilarious" (Sunday Express)

"The Sound of Laughter provides as complete a picture of its subject's world view and creative evolution as any comedian's autobigraphy I can think of" (Independent on Sunday)

"J. K. Rowling can't compete. Nor can Dan Brown. By selling more than a million copies in hardback, the highest figure since records began, this autobiography by the comedian Peter Kay has become a minor miracle" (The Times)

Book Description

The number one bestselling autobiography of Britain's most popular comedian

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Customer Reviews

3.9 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

21 of 22 people found the following review helpful By Dr Evil TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 5 Feb. 2008
Format: Paperback
I'm not going to go into a great deal of depth here as there are already 96 reviews on this product, so I'll just give you my (short) opinion - brilliant!

I've been a big fan of Kay for a while now and reading his heart-warming memories from his early life, written in a stand-up story kind of way I now have more of an in-sight into how he got into the show biz career he is so famous for now and have a history of all of the crappy jobs he had beforehand and the funny tales that accompany them. My only complaint is that the book finishes way too early as it doesn't really touch on his stand up, A Peter Kay Thing, Phoenix Nights or Max & Paddy days or his relationships with Paddy McGuiness or Dave Spikey. Hopefully this will mean that a follow-up is in the works (which might explain why he hasn't done much for the past year or so!). I normally hate reading biographies and auto-biographies, but this one I couldn't put down. An excellent and hilarious read.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By G. Williams on 1 Jan. 2007
Format: Hardcover
As other reviewers have mentioned this is certainly not a conventional autobiography with it's not-linear chapter structure. it is more a collection of anecdotes really.

Does feel like it was a little thrown together to be in time for the x-mas market. Gaps filled with Kay's standup routine (how many people will read the book who haven't aready heard the standup stuff). He has also left room for another volume detailing the time since he started making TV shows (published next x-mas???). Overall it is a good read but I have to say that after reading it I do have a slightly different view of Peter Kay. He comes accross as quite an odd boy growing up, although, i do find some of the stuff in the book a little hard to believe (think there is a lot of poetic/comedic license)
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Firenze on 13 Jan. 2007
Format: Hardcover
I love Peter Kay's cheeky, boyish humour and have found myself laughing out loud at his quick-witted japery on TV etc so I looked forward immensely to reading this book.

It is a pacy read, no soul-searching introspection and nothing particularly dull about it but... it's not well written (simple grammatical errors such as "danced passed", "must of" etc and even his beloved "Kiaora" drink is incorrectly spelt), its humour seems underdeveloped and it has the feeling of having been written very fast. Also, it falls right into the common trap for comics writing an autobiography: when they want to be serious for a moment, the whole book drops a gear and then you expect a punchline (but there isn't one).

The best chapters were the ones about his love of music (nostalgic for me, too) and the final chapter about his attempt to get into live stand-up comedy after having tricked his way into on a higher education course with one O-level. He seems to be on stronger ground, somehow, more sure of his direction and the books becomes more coherent. Up to that point, it is a series of reminiscences (some too absurd to be absolutely plausible) with a strong emphasis on his teenage years. And wouldn't it be interesting to know what his parents thought about his career ambition? And what of his sister, "R Julie", about whom we learn not one single thing (poor girl!)?

It stops abruptly when he gets to about 22, so there's no mention of anything as recent as Phoenix Nights. But the guy's only 32 now so there should be another few volumes to come. I just hope that they will be tighter and more intense than this quickly-typed waffle. An audio book, read by the author, could inject some much needed Bolton accent and quick delivery into this disappointing read.
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21 of 24 people found the following review helpful By J. Chippindale TOP 500 REVIEWER on 3 Nov. 2006
Format: Hardcover
Peter Kay is without doubt one of the funniest men Britain has produced in recent years, but does that mean his autobiography is going to be funny too. Well thankfully it is. Not side splittingly funny, but funny enough to keep a smile on your face most of the time you are reading it.

Peter Kay is not your typical stand up comedian, in fact jokes are not really his forte. He has the happy knack of making every day events sound hilariously funny and most people can associate with them, as they have either happened to themselves or someone they know. Most people of a certain age can imagine their own father saying `Garlic Bread, Garlic . . . Bread' `Cheese Cake, Cheese . . . Cake.' Unfortunately we do not all have the comedy genius of a Peter Kay, who has the ability to make the most mundane happenings sound hilarious.

His book is full of humorous anecdotes and the goings on of elderly relatives and cheap cola. My mother used to buy cheap lemonade too, so I can certainly relate to that. The book shows the man, as well as the stage star and for me anyway paints a picture of a man who deserves his success and long may it continue. A man who can laugh at himself and those around him and is loved for it. Coming from me, a Yorkshireman, to a Lancastrian that is praise indeed.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Sam Tyler on 26 Jun. 2007
Format: Hardcover
'The Sound of Laughter' is a meandering trip through the early years of TV funny man Peter Kay. Rather than delve into any deep or meaningful aspects Kay narrates a series of live stories that happened to him before he was famous. Many of his adventures have inspired characters that he has later gone on to play and fans of his work will recognise a lost from the book in his TV show.

There is no denying that parts of the book are genuinely funny and that Kay has a very upbeat and interesting way at looking at life. However, the odd structure of the book and the lack of real substance prevents it from being anything other than a funny tale. I also feel that Kay has done himself no favours with his fans when referring to the numerous mean things he has done. I guess from the book that he must be a complete pain in the neck to work with. However, none of this can detract from the fact that the book is a very funny read.
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