- Audio Download
- Listening Length: 10 hours and 14 minutes
- Program Type: Audiobook
- Version: Unabridged
- Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd
- Audible.co.uk Release Date: 29 Sept. 2011
- Language: English
- ASIN: B005QPA96E
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank:
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The Life of Lee Audiobook – Unabridged
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Audio Download, Unabridged
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What is not great is that despite the audible digital download was made onto an imac and went straight into itunes and whether played via the mac or transfered to my ipods - it does not play in chapters. It downloaded in 2 parts of several hours long per part and although when I listen and stop then start again in the same place I cannot replay anything I want to hear again or skip to or reply a chapter as It just takes me back to the beginning.
Audible have been less than helpful and assured me that their files are itunes compatible. However, although I have itunes, mine is not the most current version as I am running an older mac using an older operating system so while the book has downloaded and plays it is very user unfriendly as if I want to hear something again I have to go back to the beginning of hours of recording.
I feel it should be made blatantly clear what version of itunes it is suitable for and not just generalizations.
Had I known I would have bought the audio book on CD
So anyone running an older OS X or other beware!
The “Life of Lee” tells Lee Evans’ life story from growing up on a tough estate in Bristol, to his move to Essex and meeting with his wife, Heather. It covers his first ever prize-winning performance on stage and shows you the paths Lee took to becoming the hugely successful comedian he is today. He tells of his struggles to be accepted and to fit in and proves the truth behind the story that many comedians make other laugh either to hide their own insecurities or to stop from being bullied.
The first thing that struck me about “The Life of Lee” and which makes it unusual in the canon of celebrity autobiographies is that he’s not famous at any point during the book. Whereas many celebrities take their chance with their books to celebrate their successes and frequently use the chance to settle old scores, Lee Evans does none of that. Indeed, the book covers a period of his life when he was, as described by one of his teachers, a failure, and stops at the point at which he appears about to turn into the award winning, record breaking comedian many of us know and love.
At some point in every show I’ve seen him, Lee stops to thank the crowd for coming and he always seems awed and humbled by the fact that so many people will pay so much money to come and see him perform. That attitude is what drives this book. Lee is as stunned here as he is on stage that he’s become what he has and he shirks nothing in pointing out that he has become a success despite everything, not because of everything.
This does leave a bit of a hole in the book for those who know his work well. It’s fascinating to find out the truth behind Lee’s life, but knowing parts of his story fairly well, there does seem to be a lot missing. It would have been interesting to see how he felt about the success he had and how he has grown as a person and as a comedian as his success and fame increased and particularly how his father, who thought Lee’s attendance at art college a waste of time, reacted to his growing fame. Although he mentions the miscarriage Heather suffered, I know he has a teenage daughter he mentions frequently in his act, but there is no sign of her here. This is a wonderfully honest story as far as it goes, but it ends with the fan feeling that it perhaps doesn’t go quite far enough and I hope there will be a second book at some point to tell the story of famous Lee, not just of failure Lee.
Overall, however, this is a wonderful read. The honesty and insecurity that shines through does make it uncomfortable at times and seems completely at odds to the man you see on stage and screen. Apart from where he recounts his first stage appearance, there is very little of the man he became here and whilst he does occasionally pepper his story with the odd joke and you can find yourself sniggering here and there, this is not a book for someone who expects to be laughing all the way through. This is Lee Evans stripped to the bone, a story told with brutal honesty and offering as little comfort to the reader as the life offered the man himself.
As difficult as it was to read at times, I enjoyed the book. A more casual fan may not have done, but I loved to hear the story of the man behind the stage presence and as a particular hater of celebrity autobiographies which showcase nothing but the ego of the person, I loved reading something completely at odds to the norm. I’ve been a huge fan of Lee Evans throughout his success and discovering how hard a road he took to becoming that Lee Evans has made me respect him even more.
For the fan of Lee Evans, this is essential reading, more so for the major fan than the casual one. For someone expecting a laugh a second ride similar to one of his live shows, this is to be avoided. Personally, I found the book to be an almost humbling experience, but an uplifting one, showing that one man can overcome the odds.
This review may also appear, in whole or in part, under my name at any or all of www.ciao.co.uk, www.thebookbag.co.uk, www.goodreads.com, www.amazon.co.uk and www.dooyoo.co.uk