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Bitty, but witty.
on 18 August 2005
This book is collection of a wealth of essays, reviews, radio sketches and other oddments from various sources, so inevitably is something of a mixed bag. The majority of the pieces - including the fictionalised ramblings of The Liar's Professor Trefusis - take the form of short essays where Fry bemoans the state of society, both here and abroad. What saves these pieces from becoming tiresome is that Fry's observations (or, to put it more bluntly - moans) are wrapped up in both his ironic humour and an invigorating prose driven by his love of words. There is one slight problem with reading the pieces en masse however, and that is that Fry does have a tendencies to repeat his favourite anecdotes, arguments, and jokes - sometimes variations of the same line can be found repeated here not once but three or four times. In the books defence, these pieces were never originally written to sit next to each other, but having been collected a rather more rigorous editing might have eliminated some of this repetition. Still, an intelligent and amusing non-fiction collection, Paperweight is perhaps better experienced in small chunks than as one continuous text.