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Moab is My Washpot Paperback – 3 Sep 1998
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Advance praise for Moab Is My Washpot:
"This book bubbles; it boils and it bubbles with wonderful language, quick wit, and loopy digression that always leads you home again. Fry often seems to speak before he thinks, only to discover what he is thinking so he can go on speaking again. I say 'speaks' instead of 'writes' because you can always hear his wonderfully lyrical (English) voice in this book, and that voice is delightfully irreverent, cozy, smart, funny and insightfully honest. His voice is a great read. It's like a fun visit with a smart (Semitic) Brit. I hear you talking, Mr. Fry!"
"From the Hardcover edition.
The original bestselling autobiography by the comedian, novelist and national treasure, Stephen Fry. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.See all Product description
Top Customer Reviews
Be warned however, that this is not a whimsical account of his comedy career. It is an emotional confession of the struggle Fry had in the first twenty years of his life. Although the man's intelligence and charm are evident throughout, he vents spleen aplenty and his language is rather colourful at times. His love of music, film and words are my loves and so I devoured his writing. His digressions (he calls then diversions) often lead to even greater digressions and this is wonderful. The style is not stilted or excessively crafted but heartfelt and accessible. Fry does not set out to portray himself as misunderstood but to tell things as they are. I found the book inspirational and somehow felt better about myself afterwards. It will make you think about your family and your honesty. Yes, you will laugh but do not read this expecting a saccharine happy childhood story.
Treat yourself and indulge in some pot-washing yourself.
The author is a brilliant comic stylist and his stories had me rolling around laughing. As reported by other reviewers, life went on hold until the book was finished, leaving me wanting more. The humanity, culture and deep sense of the man means the writing never trades in self-indulgence, apart from the verbal sort which are tours de force of scabrous high comedy. Fry shares his story with the reader as though he or she were present and laughing along as an equal. The book shows what it's like to be human, deeply fallible, outrageous and original, both proud about all this and embarrassed at how it can hurt others and confuse ourselves.
The book is great on the mysteries of English middle-class socialisation and school life and full of love for his remarkably forbearing family. Fry's account of his education is sociological treasure, and leaves one wondering where the young get such lavish exposure to culture and opportunity today. What I took from it is: our first twenty years of mental and hormonal tumult are sure to inflict us with some sort of wooden leg to carry, but also the resources to dance triumphantly through later life while wearing it.
As another reviewer stated, his frequent ramblings off the main thread of the story are sheer joy and make you feel he is in the room talking to you. And he can't resist teaching us a new word by including it then demonstrating its meaning e.g. rhotacism, or explicitly correcting a widely used grammatical or spelling error! All very familiar Fry stuff.
Stephen says himself that his life is at once as unremarkable as they come and stranger than fiction, when you put it down at the end, you feel he is spot on. Only once towards the very end did I see a quality in him that you could be unashamedly proud of.
Don't worry if you don't like his novels, this is one of the most absorbing and satisfying autobiographies ever written.
Well, if you've ever wondered then this is the book for you. Some hilarious moments - I'll never forget the bit with the organ prank which I was reading at 1am. My girlfriend rolled over and asked my why I was crying as I had tears of laughter pouring down my face.
But it's not all laughs, it's a great insight into how the word meister ticks and why he seems to have life all wrapped up. He wonders why people think this when he's so open in telling us how he has messed everything up. My theory being that he seems confident BECAUSE he's so willing to tell us how messed up he is. This book's content is a self analysis that goes beyond most people's own personal experience or practice. Thus he seems to have sorted life out. A lesson to us all here, maybe?
It's also provided an interesting insight to reading his fictional novels and you can't help exclaiming "oh...I know why this bit is here" as he uses his own life experience in the fictional realm.
A jolly good read - buy it!
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I loved this, but then I love Stephen Fry. He is a magician with words and when I read his book I can almost hear him reading it to me. Excellent addition to his autobiography.Published 7 months ago by Carol Diez
I am an admirer of Mr Fry, and was looking forward to reading this. However, I found the constant jumping around from past to present, interspersed with lengthy pages of what I can... Read morePublished 10 months ago by M. Gordon
Wonderfully written, gripped me from start to finish and quickly moved onto his subsequent 2 autobiography's. Read morePublished 11 months ago by Connor Anderson - Price
Rubbish, Rude, Vulgar. Mr Fry is usually a very funny man but not with his written word. Don't bother with this one. Read morePublished 11 months ago by J. Hellens
A bit wandering but I enjoyed most of it. The adolescent doubts and situations certainly resonated with me.Published 12 months ago by blends1985