This is a magnificent, utterly absorbing book.
Not only does it give you a fascinating insight into the mind and working practices of one of the most brilliant theatre directors, but it shows the frustrations (sometimes misery) and complications of running an enormous organisation, while doing another job in parallel.
He tells (with absolute honesty) the story of the ten years in which he ran The National Theatre: the rehearsals, the first nights, the notices (good and bad)- and more than that, the meetings, the people and the politics (quite literally: Blair, Thatcher, Major and Kinnock are all here, as well as the more familiar theatrical greats such as Fiona Shaw, Deborah Warner, Alan Bennett, David Hare, Maggie Smith and Judi Dench).
What is striking is how recognisable Eyre's situation seems. On one hand, this is a unique account: how many of us have ever run the country's largest theatre? On the other, this is a story of a man whose great skill in one area - directing theatre - leads him into doing a job for which he has little training: running a huge organisation. Anyone who has got to the top of their profession, and then suddenly had "management" thrust upon them will recognise the frustrations, the politics and the draining demands made.
But this is an exhilarating book, for all its public and private disappointments, it is also full of triumphs - as any account that includes Eyre's "Guys and Dolls", " Amy's View". "David Hare Trilogy", "John Gabriel Borkman" and "King Lear" (to name but a few) would have to be.