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A Tiny Bit Marvellous Hardcover – 28 Oct 2010

470 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Michael Joseph; 1st edition (28 Oct. 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0718156048
  • ISBN-13: 978-0718156046
  • Product Dimensions: 16.2 x 3.2 x 22 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (470 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 95,365 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Dawn French has been making people laugh for thirty years. On purpose.

As a writer, comedian and actor, she has appeared in some of the
UK's most long running, cherished and celebrated shows, including
French and Saunders, The Comic Strip Presents ..., Murder Most Horrid,
The Vicar of Dibley, Jam and Jerusalem, Lark Rise to Candleford, and more
recently, Roger and Val Have Just Got In.


Product Description

Review

Beautifully observed. Makes you laugh on every page (The Times)

Hilarious. Chortle-out-loud turns of phrase, razor-sharp observations (The Stylist)

Fresh, extremely funny (Sunday Times)

Has she cracked it with her first novel? Yes. Engaging from the first page (Heat)

Really enjoyable and highly recommended. Dawn French is a wonderful writer - witty, wise and poignant (Daily Mail)

A hilarious and compelling read (Good Housekeeping) --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

Dawn French has been making people laugh for thirty years. On purpose. As a writer, comedian and actor, she has appeared in some of this country's most long running, cherished and celebrated shows, including French and Saunders, The Comic Strip Presents ..., Murder Most Horrid, The Vicar of Dibley, Jam and Jerusalem, Lark Rise to Candleford, and more recently, Roger and Val Have Just Got In.

Her bestselling memoir, Dear Fatty, was published to critical acclaim in 2008. This is without a doubt her first novel.


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Customer Reviews

3.3 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By iandliz on 21 Dec. 2011
Format: Paperback
This is the story of the Battle family told through a series of diary entries. Mo, the mother, is fast approaching fifty and feeling old and frumpy and is vulnerable to any temptations to change her humdrum life for a more exotic one. Dora is seventeen and at loggerheads with her mother. She too is vulnerable to messing up her life and aspires to be the next X-Factor sensation. Then we have flamboyantly gay Peter, aka Oscar (after Wilde) who loves all things enchanting and is discovering love for the first time. In the background we have the dad and husband, quietly watching over everyone and holding the family together. The two teenagers are going through their own personal crises but will Mo get through hers in time to be there for her children?

I enjoyed this book as far as it is an easy read and amusing in places but it did disappoint in many aspects. I absolutely loved Oscar and the way his chapters were written was hilarious. I could have read a whole book about him in fact. Mo I couldn't really understand at all, she was totally wrapped up in herself when her family needed her. How could she miss her daughter's eighteenth birthday, for example? Dora was a total caricature of a teenager. I get the angry teenager bit and the difficult relationship with her mother, but why did she have to be so thick and shallow? With the rest of the family being reasonably intelligent and boringly middle-class, Dora was a total chav and my female instinct wishes French had given her a brain. The story draws to an interesting climax when the identity of X-Man (someone Dora meets on the internet) is revealed, and again that fell flat for me as the character in question seemed to have no motive for that sort of behaviour.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Simon Savidge Reads on 14 Mar. 2012
Format: Paperback
`A Tiny Bit Marvellous' is really a bit of a family drama. The family in question are the Battle family who consist of Dad, Mum (Mo), Dora, Peter and Poo the dog. Through diary entries from Mo (as she heads for 50), Dora (enduring the tricky teenage times that almost 18 brings) and Peter (who likes to be called Oscar as he believes he is Oscar Wilde) we get a snapshot of family life as the Battle family go into quite a tumultuous time. It's hard really to say much about a plot other than things happen, some big some small, which ripple through the family and we see from these three characters.

In fact it's the characters which really are the stars of `A Tiny Bit Marvellous'. Mo being rather frank about the fact she feels like an almost fifty year old frump, along with the fact that whilst being a psychologist she has no idea what is going on in her children's heads. Dora has been freshly dumped and dreams of becoming the next famous sensation on the X Factor rather than having to study or do any work, whilst also having a bit of venom towards her mother who clearly doesn't understand her. My favourite was Peter, or Oscar, and his hilarious dialect as he goes through life believing he is, or has been channelling, Wilde is absolutely hilarious especially when he becomes smitten with someone. I laughed and laughed. All three of these characters live and breath and with the diary entries showing completely conflicting reactions and readings of situations there's much humour, and reality, here too. I also found I wanted more of the secondary characters like Mo's mother Pamela, who was hilarious and who stole scenes here and there, I could have read even more of these people who came and went.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Damaskcat HALL OF FAMETOP 50 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 24 Nov. 2010
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
The Battle Family - Mo the mother, Dora the daughter and Peter - channelling Oscar Wilde so prefers to be called Oscar - and Dad, who's just Dad. The story is told in the first person by Mo, Dora and Oscar in alternate chapters. I found myself rather irritated by Dora especially her teen speak, though I liked Oscar and could identify with some of what Mo was saying as she approached her fiftieth birthday. Is this really all there is to life?

Mo is a child psychologist and she's writing a book about how to deal with the teenagers in your life. She is wondering whether a colleague is romantically interested in her and finds his attentions make her aware of her own self for a change instead of just her roles in life - mother, wife, professional colleague, and daughter. But is she heading for disaster? Will daughter Dora sort out her lack of love life and what about Oscar? Does he have too many things in common with Oscar Wilde? Then there's Dad - always there in the background.

I found this book annoying and laugh out loud funny by turns. The author conjures up an excellent picture of family life with all its annoyances and heart warming moments. Something kept me reading as I wanted to see how everyone would resolve their various crises and I was rewarded by the ending. I thought the various voices were clearly differentiated and I could tell who was speaking even without the chapter headings. It is worth reading in my opinion if you want a funny and heart warming, but no holds barred, portrait of family life.
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