17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
As funny as you hoped it would be - absolutely wonderful!,
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This review is from: Small Man in a Book (Hardcover)
As a fellow South Walian, I've been a fan of Rob Brydon's for many years. I knew he had a good story to tell, and this doesn't let you down.
Splendidly self-deprecating throughout, Rob writes as he speaks. He keeps up a running commentary on his own narrative throughout which is so exactly him. Very few celebrity writers manage this trick of keeping their own voice- Paul O'Grady is a notable exception. Rob's book is right up there with Paul's and really deserves to do as well.
This also means that the book will no doubt make a wonderful audiobook, if Rob has the time to do it.
The early chapters are also a tribute to the strong, loving support Rob received from his family. Although Rob grew up in a time of recession and his family was affected by this, his parents did their damndest to shield him from worry. Rob had a very indulged childhood - and in one infinitely sad little paragraph, of an event when he was six, he gives an indication why. Normally children who are spoiled aren't very appealing but Rob clearly was.
Like so many others in his field, the one place he shone at school was on stage, and he plays tribute to the teachers who made it so. Wales has a gift for producing inspirational teachers who have produced inspirational actors. Rob, Michael Sheen, Sir Antony Hopkins and Sir Richard Burton have all come from a tiny area, geographically. All had mentors who made them so.
Much of Rob's recall of his student days is probably helped by the fact that he was teetotal. Most celebrity autobiographies contain periods when the writer was too busy going out and having a good time to recall much - not Rob's.
Rob's gradual rise as a voice-over artist and frustrated actor-comedian is wonderfully described... You read on, hoping the break comes soon, but this also outlines the gradual emergence of the character who would make that break, the exiled Cardiffian taxi-driver, Keith Barret. (And an explanation of why it's Barret and not Barrett.)
A special mention must go to the photographs throughout the book - the captions are absolutely brilliant. Most of us have a dodgy childhood pic taken with Santa. Most comedians include one in their biographies. Rob has three dodgy Santas.. and one rather handsome one.
An absolute must buy if you love a great, rewarding, warm and funny celebrity read. Five stars plus.