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95 of 96 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A deadly serious, hilarious book.
This book is perhaps the funniest book I have ever read. Stewart Lee has consistently been one of the funniest comedians in the country and his apparently arrogant yet always self-deprecating style has been brilliantly realised on the page. He shows a thoughtfulness and integrity that puts previous controversies about his work into context and also provides a fascinating...
Published on 29 July 2010 by Ben Thurston

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77 of 88 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Avoid the Kindle version
The Kindle version of this book is riddled with typos and mysterious line breaks. I can forgive the odd typo of two but not when they appear with such consistency that they destroy the flow and enjoyment of a book.

The most regularly occurring mistake is the word Comedian which mostly appears split into 'Com' and 'edian' - not something you really want in a...
Published on 14 Jun 2011 by Peter Moore


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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I don't have many heroes..., 17 Aug 2010
This review is from: How I Escaped My Certain Fate (Paperback)
I often find it difficult to put into words what I like about Lee's material. Self effacing yet pompous, intelligent and mature yet puerile, perfectly timed yet often bumbling. I love the way he takes a very well thought out routine and shamefacedly presents it as though it were mere rags. There is a quote in the book which sums this up perfectly for me, something along the lines of 'Slowly raising a shabby curtain on a thing we have long already seen through the ragged holes, and asking 'Was that what you wanted? Are you entertained now?''. Sabotaging his own routines and stretching jokes until they collapse under their own weight, becoming even funnier in the process........Sorry, it's gone again. I can't finish this off.

I won't bother to repeat a lot of other reviewers, except to say that I enjoyed this book immensely and that Lee comes across as a very modest and genuine person.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A gift for Friend who liked it., 28 Aug 2013
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I bought this as a gift for a friend who is a big fan of Stewart Lee.

He said it was a good read, although he said a lot of the book is transcripts from his shows.

I read a couple of pages before sending it on to him and laughed my head off.

If you are a fan of his you probably wouldn't mind having this book in your collection.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing., 16 Aug 2013
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As is all of Stewart Lee's work, this book is amazing. I loved every bit of it and bought the EP book, and am looking forward to TV Comedian.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars More important than funny, 27 Feb 2013
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Christopher Long "Phone Monkey" (Rugby, UK) - See all my reviews
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I've tried getting into Stewart Lee before. (Yes, I know how that sounds). Nothing clicked until I recently stumbled across Carpet Remnant World. Now I can't get enough of him. I've watched all the stand up I can find and I've booked tickets to see him live later this year. This book is a perfect statement and explanation for his comedy. It gives you a chance to not just relive some of his brilliant and challenging moments but also to understand the mind underneath the character he portrays onstage. This really is an interesting look into the world of stand up comedy and your guide is a man who is not afraid of being honest, whether he's talking about the subject matter at hand, comedy as an artform or himself. Some of the stand up is hard to read without his intonation or delivery but I still think you get something special here. A genuine and very human look into a very muddied and confused business.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars On the whole, a bit thin on quilts., 7 Aug 2012
Comparisons are, in common with Lee himself, odious but he comfortably could be ranked alongside comedic luminaries such as Tom O'Connor, John Smith and Nick Clegg. Of course, I know nothing about comedy and this book isn't aimed at me. It proves that through its deployment of facts.

Several names cited here as key influences on the nascent Stew are unknown to me and possibly to science. These people apparently have contributed to his becoming the wretched, marginalised figure he is today reduced to having to allow Armando Iannucci, a tiresome CGI-generated rodent character I believe, a cameo on his show presumably as payback for something unsavoury in the past.

Anyway, apart from the paucity of detailed information about quilts, quilt-making and quilt people, the only real sour note in the book is a frankly shocking admission to having once bought an album by the tribute band Oasis.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hilarious, 3 Jan 2012
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Keith M - See all my reviews
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Stewart Lee's book is quite simply one of the funniest books I've ever read (as in bursting out laughing no matter what the surroundings). It also shows up Lee to be one of the most original, witty and erudite comedians around. The book charts Lee's 'career' as a stand-up from his days in the Lee and Herring duo with Richard Herring, through the period (2000 to 2004) during which he gave up being a stand-up and, instead, co-wrote Jerry Springer - The Opera, through to his recent renaissance as one of the most highly rated comedians on the circuit. The majority of the book provides the (extensively annotated) transcripts from three of Lee's recent standup routines (in 2005, 2006 and 2008).

As the non-mainstream comedian that Lee clearly is, he provides a very interesting critical commentary on the state (and recent history) of British (and some non-British) comedy, praising the likes of Daniel Kitson, Simon Munnery, Jerry Sadowitz, Ian Macpherson, Kevin Eldon, Johnny Vegas, Dave Allen, Malcolm Hardee and Robin Ince, whilst deriding Michael McIntyre, Peter Kay, Russell Howard and Frank Skinner (Fantasy Football). The content of his standup (and associated commentary) is outstanding with marvellous pieces on terrorism, the US, Ang Lee, Tom O' Connor, football, Tony Blair, Carphone Warehouse, political correctness, religious bigotry, Big Brother, the Queen 'musical' We Will Rock You and Scotland. But, for me, the highlight was his take on Richard Littlejohn's response to the Ipswich prostitute murders (magic).

Essential reading.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A fascinating insight, 9 Dec 2011
This review is from: How I Escaped My Certain Fate (Paperback)
This great book is a fascinating insight into the construction of Stewart Lee's humour and the amazing detail that goes into it. It adds fuel to the fire of obsession of those who love him!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Deconstructing Comedy, 1 July 2011
This review is from: How I Escaped My Certain Fate (Paperback)
You either love or hate Stewart Lee... or you either pretend to love or hate him. For me he's a comedian who makes me smile rather than laugh out loud... though that happens sometimes too. Here he takes us through his creative thought processes whilst, writing and performing stand up. It's intriguing and very funny, as he pokes fun at his own desire to be a respected Left Wing comedian who debates high concept ideas in a laid back and fascinating way whilst simultaneously poking fun at his audience and the whole concept of political correctness. Don't know if it's ever happened, but I would love to see Stewart and Mark Thomas on the same bill one day.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant, 5 May 2011
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This review is from: How I Escaped My Certain Fate (Paperback)
A brilliant book that left me with a new found admiration for Stewart Lee and the way in which his stand up has evolved. If you are a long standing fan or have just discovered Lee then I would highly recommend this book, I will be passing it onto someone who has never heard of him and I expect they will find it just as enjoyable as myself.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars release the clowns, 24 Mar 2011
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Mr. Benjamin Rowlinson (London, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: How I Escaped My Certain Fate (Paperback)
being just a little bit younger than Stewart Lee, I've always felt like he's somehow the king of the musty self-righteous twisters whose bobbing nape-over-Crombie I've been forced to stare up at my whole life long. The boots say 'user' and "How I Escaped My Certain Fate" confirms that they fit very well. Nevertheless, he's always made up for it by being very giving in his way and in this book he's apparently doing his honest best to open up an artery - so good luck to him, I suppose. Have yer five stars and shove 'em.
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How I Escaped My Certain Fate
How I Escaped My Certain Fate by Stewart Lee (Paperback - 5 Aug 2010)
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