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Are You Dave Gorman? Paperback – 6 Sep 2001
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The award-winning Are You Dave Gorman? is the oddly touching story of how Perrier Award nominee Dave Gorman went in search of all the world's other Dave Gormans.
Fans of the TV version of this travelogue-cum-Arthurian-quest will know how it all began: one minute Dave and his flatmate Danny Wallace (himself a talented producer and writer) were kicking their heels in suburban London, the next they were on the night-train to Scotland to see assistant manager of East Fife Football Club David Gorman, so Dave Gorman could prove to Danny Wallace there were other Dave Gormans--and thereby win a drinker's bet. Such was the buzz Dave Gorman got from meeting Dave Gorman, he then went on a half year schlep around the world seeking out yet more Dave Gormans: in Ireland, Israel, Norway, America, with a sarcastically derisive Danny Wallace in constant and niggling attendance.
Things that work on TV--or start as drunken bets--don't always make the most successful of books and there are times when Are You Dave Gorman? seems a little contrived, not to say fatuously pointless. But such is the charm, candour, and wit of the two writers' alternating voices, any qualms come to seem churlish, if not thick-headed: it's the very frivolousness and absurdity of Are You Dave Gorman? that makes it so boyishly likeable. --Sean Thomas
'Gorman is becoming the Bill Bryson of stand-up', Sunday Times .'A life-affirming, heart-warming chapter in the history of English eccentricity', Independent on SundaySee all Product description
Top customer reviews
Once I read the first page, I couldn't put this book down, the first thing that struck me was what a simple idea it is, try and meet as many people of the same name as possible all over the world (warning, if your name is John Smith this could be a very expensive hobby)
This book really is a laugh a minute as it recounts what starts as a drunken bet between 2 best friends/flatmates and turns into an obsession which nearly destroys relationships, careers and bank balances as the 2 "characters" Dave Gorman & Danny Wallace set off on a madcap trip lasting several months and finally ending up in a TV show as they meet Dave Gorman after Dave Gorman along the way, including women who changed their name by deed poll!.
I won't spoil it anymore but have to agree with Time Out when they proclaim this book "The Stand Up version of Bill Bryson) Buy this book NOW!!!
The book is separated into two voices. In bold we have Dave, whose words are a development of the television script - many of the same jokes appear the striking feature being that he seemed to think that the whole affair was pure sanity. In light is Danny, perhaps the greater writer, his journalistic experience to the fore, painting Dave as a much curiouser man. In some places, it may have been nice to have Hanne's voice in there as well - at times she is quite a distant figure, her actual feelings about the endevour not entirely clear. Interjections from her, far away from the main story may a slowed the pace and added an extra layer of context.
But I don't want to criticise what is a great book, certainly ripe for a screen adaptation (I favour John Cusak for Dave, Matthew Broderick for Danny, Joey Lauren Adams for Hanne). This is one of the compulsive stories that you wish would not end and at the end you wish they would go off and find fifty-four Danny Wallaces...it seems only fair...
Danny bets Dave that he can't meet "loads" of other Dave Gormans. The next day, cold, hungry and hung over, they find themselves leaving London on a train to Scotland, on the start of the great Dave Gorman hunt. The challenge is on and it makes riveting reading, full of laddish humour, quirky asides and examples of extreme eccentricity. You'll find yourself bursting out in a guffaw, shaking your head, giggling "what an idiot" and then reading on for more. The best of it all is that it's true. You'll be pleased to hear, Dave, that I've checked the Port Elizabeth phone book, called all the Gormans and there are none listed here. Just so you don't yank poor Danny off down here.
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He's perfect for Dave, isn't he?