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43 of 46 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An amazing life story, forget prejudice, remember walk in someone's shoes...
I was quite shocked by the eejits 1 star review.

I heard about this book on Radio 4, the interview was amazing because you have a stereotypical view of the guy. He isn't actually Johnny Vegas, this is a character that he's created, in someways to deal with what he's gone through.

As a Catholic I've read with so much interest, I knew about Upholland,...
Published 20 months ago by Pucca84

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Could Have Been Better
This is the story of how Michael Pennington, a catholic boy from St. Helens, became the comedian he named Johnny Vegas.

The book records how Michael decided to become a priest seemingly because friends and family would admire him for it. After two years at a catholic seminary, he realised that he wasn't cut out for this life and his experiences make amusing and...
Published 7 months ago by John Pitchers


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43 of 46 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An amazing life story, forget prejudice, remember walk in someone's shoes..., 2 Oct. 2013
This review is from: Becoming Johnny Vegas (Hardcover)
I was quite shocked by the eejits 1 star review.

I heard about this book on Radio 4, the interview was amazing because you have a stereotypical view of the guy. He isn't actually Johnny Vegas, this is a character that he's created, in someways to deal with what he's gone through.

As a Catholic I've read with so much interest, I knew about Upholland, Id heard the rumours, you could hear the pain in Johnny's voice when he was talking about this subject, it really struck my heart.

This IS NOT your typical, generic vacuous celebrity garbage. It's the one celebrity book where you feel that he has really lived, he has had life experiences you couldn't imagine looking at the guy now. We're not talking Katie Price & other Z Listers this really is an interesting read.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A total surprise, 22 Sept. 2014
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Peter Lee (Manchester ,United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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I didn't expect to like this as much as I did. I've always enjoyed watching Johnny Vegas on TV but surely an autobiography - a long one at that - would be pushing things? Thankfully it was a hugely enjoyable read.

The book is the story of Michael Pennington, better known as Johnny Vegas, and how he developed from childhood to his first successes on the Edinburgh Fringe. He's often startlingly honest, and there were occasions where I was surprised he'd had the guts to put some of the stories into print. It's also funny, often hilariously so, and by the end I was viewing Johnny / Michael in a different light, the man we see on TV being a character rather than a human being.

Yes it's long, and some may find it boring. Yes, it's very "northern", but he grew up in St Helens so what else could it be? And yes, the interruptions by the hypochondriac Johnny (printed in a strange font in the paperback and hardback, but just rendered in a slightly larger typeface on the Kindle so not as easy to pick out) are a little tiresome at times, but they're few and far between.

I thoroughly enjoyed this book, and the only negative thing I can say about it was that the Kindle formatting wasn't great regarding the "Johnny" interruptions.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One book I didn't want to end, 8 April 2015
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Anyone who follows my reviews will know that I only give 5 stars sparingly, because I think it demeans the currency if every mortal thing gets 5 stars. Having said that, I would willingly give this book 6 stars if that was an option. It is, quite simply, brilliant! Searingly honest, painfully so at times, it is not for the squeamish or easily affronted. This story charts the simple and happy life of Michael Pennington in his childhood through to his time in a seminary, at which point it all rather goes off the rails and the path to Johnny Vegas begins. I suppose the reason that I enjoyed this book so much is that aspects of it strike a faint echo in my own life. Morbid hypochondria in my teenage years - check, need for copious amounts of alcohol to be funny - check, lack of success with the opposite sex due to early bad experiences - check, check and double check! There were times when I found his accounts so painful that I had to walk away from the book for a while. On the other hand, there were many laugh-out-loud moments (and I don't have too many of those these days) - the magazine behind the bath panel being a particular example. Whether you're a fan of Mr. Vegas, or not, I would strongly urge you to read this book. You'll be a better person for it.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A book to change your mind about JV, 3 Jan. 2015
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If, like me, you thought that Michael Pennington aka Johnny Vegas, was one of those loud, drunken abusive Northerners albeit with an eloquent turn of phrase, then read this book. I was inspired to buy this book after watching a TV programme several years ago where he traipsed across the USA asking various clerics some rather pertinent religious questions whilst learning that JV actually studied for the priesthood! The book covers his early years up his breakthrough at the Edinburgh Comedy Festival and, as you will expect, is incredibly funny amongst the more sombre tones of the book. It is very perceptive of human nature in general and, by the end of the book, the reader can almost understand the whys and wherefores relating to the persona of Johnny.
And that's why I've knocked a star off. Michael has "conversations* with Johnny which is very intriguing, but whose idea was the monstrous gothic typeface for the thoughts of the latter? It is difficult to read and spoils what is otherwise a great read. Nevertheless, this autobiography is well worth reading; just goes to show how you can't judge the book by it cover.....
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Audio Book read by Johnny Vegas, 21 Oct. 2013
By 
D. S. Robb "Storm" (Stafford, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Becoming Johnny Vegas (Audio CD)
This is one of the most fantastically engaging audiobooks I've ever listened to. Johnny's way of recounting childhood memories interjected with his own humorous description is brilliant. It brought back many of my own childhood memories and thoughts at the time and made me yearn for those days gone by. It is something I could and will listen to over and over again. Highly recommend it.
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27 of 31 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Revelation, 26 Sept. 2013
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This review is from: Becoming Johnny Vegas (Hardcover)
Having known Johnny for nearly 20 years I knew Johnny Vegas was created by Michael Pennington but not how it came about. This autobiography, which at times reads like a novel, shows how and why this symbiotic relationship developed. A wonderful read with many funny and touching times captured in its pages. I would recommend it to anyone particularly those people who don't like Johnny Vegas, this will change your minds.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Could Have Been Better, 20 Oct. 2014
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This is the story of how Michael Pennington, a catholic boy from St. Helens, became the comedian he named Johnny Vegas.

The book records how Michael decided to become a priest seemingly because friends and family would admire him for it. After two years at a catholic seminary, he realised that he wasn't cut out for this life and his experiences make amusing and sometimes disturbing reading.

The second half of the book includes his erratic life at school and university and documents his gradual reliance on drink - to put it politely!

Michael Pennington is obviously a complex character, and to explain how he drifted into comedy - and yet more drinking - he adopts the annoying device of pretending - I hope it is pretending - that he and Johnny Vegas share the same head and talk to each other. This is where the book becomes a confusing and ultimately boring read as it is difficult to understand who is supposed to be talking to whom. It also makes the book 20% longer than it should have been.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent, 16 Feb. 2014
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Dawn (United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Becoming Johnny Vegas (Audio CD)
Got this to listen too in the car - and because of the excellent reviews. It certainly was not a disappointment and has made me like this complex and intelligent man even more than before. I would recommend this even if you are not a fan of Johnny Vegas as his story is so interesting and honest. Also very well written and shows his intelligence in his well thought out memories and reflections. Hope he writes another one in a few years time. The CD brings it even more to life being narrated by the great man himself.He had me laughing, cringing and crying all in one journey - and at times I did not want the journey to end as I was enjoying listening so much.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Boring in parts., 9 Feb. 2014
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The story of Michael Pennington's youth is quite interesting - although his fixation with masturbation does get quite tedious. It tells of his emotional journey, and how the ranting self-pitying Johnny Vegas took over and became popular. Repeated descriptions of him getting drunk also start to get boring, but I suppose in order to get to know the 'real' Micheal/Johnny you have to read all that stuff, but I found myself skim reading when he droned on about yet another preparation for a gig, involving getting completely hammered.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars love this guy, 31 Jan. 2014
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Brilliant and so different. Not "lovey" at all which is a trait I find so sickening in Celeb. biographies. Michael was very brave to detail his life as he did but what a likeable and genuine person he seems to be. Hope he stays popular for ever.
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Becoming Johnny Vegas
Becoming Johnny Vegas by Johnny Vegas (Paperback - 22 May 2014)
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