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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars One recollection too many?
This well-written and pacey dual biography of the iconic comedy partnership of Peter Cook and Dudley Moore contains few details about their lives and doings that I have not already seen elsewhere, but `One Leg Too Few' is still balanced and well-structured and very readable. My main reservation about the book is the fact that occupying the its second half, the author has...
Published 4 months ago by James Hayes

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars It's pretty much hacked together from the other biographies
It's pretty much hacked together from the other biographies. Nothing new, no interesting perspective. The writing is just standard meat and potatoes biog style.
Published 5 months ago by flagstone


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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars One recollection too many?, 12 Aug 2014
By 
James Hayes "JM Hayes" (Herts., UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: One Leg Too Few (Paperback)
This well-written and pacey dual biography of the iconic comedy partnership of Peter Cook and Dudley Moore contains few details about their lives and doings that I have not already seen elsewhere, but `One Leg Too Few' is still balanced and well-structured and very readable. My main reservation about the book is the fact that occupying the its second half, the author has opted to include nearly 150 pages of accounts of recent visits with various people who were close to, or acquainted with, Cook and Moore: having ploughed through these with dwindling levels of interest, I have to say that they do not really add much to a better understand of the pair's adventures and misadventures - the best bits from these interviews could have been incorporated into the main body of the preceding text, and the rest junked if favour of additions to the main part of the book.
For instance, I would have liked the main part of the story to have contained some more historical context, such as how Cook and Moore's output related to the times and societal changes through which they lived (especially the Derek and Clive period, which coincided with the rise and fall of Punk subculture). It also would have been nice to have some recognition of Dudley Moore's musical contributions to 'Not Only... But Also' - as well as composing the catchy opening signature tune (and, of course, the closing 'Goodbyee' duet), he usually performed a number with his Jazz Trio and/or with guesting vocalists - these performances brought an additional layer of finesse to the proceedings that has not been adequately acknowledged, I'd argue; and by demonstrating Moore's considerable versatility, added to the depth of the comedy that formed the main part of the shows. Apart from those carps, 'One Leg Too Few' is a worthy addition to the Cook/Moore biographical canon.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars It's pretty much hacked together from the other biographies, 6 July 2014
This review is from: One Leg Too Few (Hardcover)
It's pretty much hacked together from the other biographies. Nothing new, no interesting perspective. The writing is just standard meat and potatoes biog style.
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The original bro-mance, 2 Oct 2013
This review is from: One Leg Too Few (Kindle Edition)
Having read Tragically I Was An Only Twin and Goodbye Again (I bought them as presents for people and kept them for myself), I was intrigued to find out what more William Cook could have to say about Peter Cook (no relation) and Dudley Moore. The book takes its title from a sketch that Peter Cook wrote long before meeting Dudley Moore, when he was just 18 years old. He claimed it is the funniest thing he wrote. What is intriguing about this book is how it reveals the complexity of the relationship, how Cook & Moore became, in comedic terms, more than the sum of their parts and how toxic their genius became. The first chapter charts the day in 1978 when Cook & Moore met for the last time to record Ad Nauseam. It makes for very uncomfortable reading as Peter Cook, plainly unhinged by drink, unleashes uncontrolled comedic bile. Dudley Moore looks on in horror.

The book draws you in to their story, from Dagenham and Oxford to Radley and Cambridge, from Hampstead to Hollywood. It's cleverly structured so you can read the story (and it is a gripping story) in the first part, "Not Only" and the interviews, each written as stand-alone chapters in the second part, "But Also". The surprising thing that emerges is the depth of feeling that they had for each other and how its only real means of expression was through comedy. On paper, it looks to the outsider like Peter Cook was a relentless bully, tormenting and belittling Dudley Moore whenever possible. What emerges from William Cook's book is that Peter loved Dudley but that he knew of no other means of expressing himself other than through drink and comedy.

Whether you're a fan or not, this book tells an important story.
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5.0 out of 5 stars very well written and a fascinating account of the creative and destructive power of love, or as put 'bromance', 24 July 2014
By 
K. Phillips "entity" (Glasgow,Scotland) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: One Leg Too Few (Kindle Edition)
?when will we see their likes again? For pete and dud fans essential reading..very well written and a fascinating account of the creative and destructive power of love , or as put 'bromance'.Still have memories of watching 'not only but also' when i were a lad with my dad and joined in with the laughter,even when i didn't really understand it.The terminal phase of pete and duds career is like watching a train crash and is particularly well documented here.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Interesting and emotional, 25 Mar 2014
By 
B. Christine Smith (London, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: One Leg Too Few (Hardcover)
William Cook managed to transport me into the lives of these two exceptionally talented men - presenting both their public success but also how they dealt with their vulnerabilities and insecurities both privately and openly.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A good read, 27 Nov 2013
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David H. Bebbington (Kent, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: One Leg Too Few (Hardcover)
My favourite reading is showbiz memoirs and biographies, and this one did not disappoint. Particularly in the case of Dudley Moore I learned a few things I hadn't known before.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, 13 Nov 2014
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This review is from: One Leg Too Few (Paperback)
Excellent customer service.
Product received as described.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars VERY funny!!, 19 Nov 2013
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This review is from: One Leg Too Few (Hardcover)
If you like Cook and moore you just HAVE to buy this book! Its hysterical and you cannot put it down
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great book, but frustrating on Kindle, 24 Jan 2014
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This review is from: One Leg Too Few (Kindle Edition)
This is a great read, but the Kindle edition has a habit of jumping to pages in the 80% range when you turn a page, which soon becomes annoying.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars All you'd want, 10 Jan 2014
By 
G. M. Melling (Bristol) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: One Leg Too Few (Hardcover)
Excellent read - well researched with some surprising extras. The writer presents a detailed account of the lives if two of the most influential figures of late twentieth century comedy
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One Leg Too Few
One Leg Too Few by William Cook
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