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Customer reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
The Rules of Acting
Format: Hardcover|Change
Price:£14.99+ Free shipping with Amazon Prime

on 30 September 2013
Sorry to be the (wrap)-party-pooper, but this felt like a bit of a pale imitation of Michael Simkins' other books and Michael Green's seminal work on the subject - "The Art of Coarse Acting". Simkins freely acknowledges his debt to Green, and having coincidentally just re-read the "Coarse" version of what acting is really all about, the only real difference between the two works (apart from the effect of time on some of the old jokes), is that Green deals with the amateur code, and Simkins with the professional version. This book still has some interesting insights into the actor's life and perpetual insecurities, and Michael Simkins is an ideal tour guide through the various nooks and crannies of theatre and television, as he really seems to have done the lot in his time. Adverts, Shakespeare, The Bill, Eastenders, Chicago, Mamma Mia, etc all add up to an impressively varied CV, but the sum total of the book equates to rather less than he managed with his earlier work "What's My Motivation?", which felt funnier and fresher. But as Simkins points out, actors these days are heavily motivated by the fees they get for repeats of their work.
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on 14 July 2013
I think I've read all of Michael Simkins books and find his easy to read style and self-deprecating humor to be a delight. This book is no exception and is a brilliant follow up to his other book on acting called "what's my motivation"

The book has some really laugh out loud moments and so many its observations on his chosen profession could serve well as a metaphor for life itself.

Thoroughly enjoyable from start to finish - and certainly entertaining, even if you have no real interest in the vagaries of a thespians lot; but it's unputdownable if you have -buy it!
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on 28 July 2013
Having just struggled, no, make that suffered through the over long and neurotically self obsessed autobiography of Pete Townsend, who, despite having achieved fame and a large fortune, still managed to draft a joyless read, it was a relief to move on to Michael Simkins highly entertaining and laugh-out-loud funny book.

Whether you're in the business or not, you'll thoroughly enjoy his witty, revealing and I suspect, highly accurate account of what it takes, in the face of seemingly insurmountable odds to become and remain an actor. Oh, and to make a living out of it as well. Something that in truth, most actors of all abilities struggle to do.

Definitely one to read again in the future when I'm feeling low yet thankful I'm not an actor, or for that matter, Pete Townsend.
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on 18 July 2013
I like Michael Simkins books and I have enjoyed reading all of them but I particularly like the books on acting. He is so experienced and knowledgeable that you get a real feel for "being there". When this is combined with laugh out loud moments that had my wife asking me to read extracts, (never a good idea out of context), and a relaxed raconteur style they make for an unbeatable combination. It seems counter intuitive to highlight particular extracts because that would suggest that there are less good bits but I particularly like the stories of the great and the good, (it’s such a pity that the lawyers won’t let him name them), but the best out loud laugh of all was the actor who didn’t read the full script and found himself having to simulate sex with a pig. Highly enjoyable read that I have recommended to several friends already.
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on 16 September 2015
Taking a look at the various stages in becoming and being an actor, the subject is addressed by Michael Simmons in his usual amusing style.

Well written and structured the book is ful of funny anecdotes. What else can you say other than a thoroughly entertaining read for anyone who is into any form of acting, drama, TV, theatre or film.
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on 15 May 2014
I am not any good at book reviews, but I have to say that Michael has done it again, the bloke is a genius ,I have all his books, obviously Fatty Batter is the best book ever written but all his books are superb, looking forward to the next one.

Pure brilliance
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on 4 December 2017
It arrived on stated date, sadly I had to return it as my friend she had already purchased a similar book
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on 30 July 2013
If you have ever wondered how actors cope with the vagaries of their trade, if you are interested in the technical side of acting and love to hear some cracking stories about an actor's life on the road then this is the book for you. Highly recommended.
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on 18 July 2013
Michael Simkins is a terrific actor. With his latest book he demonstrates once again that he is also a terrific writer with a wonderful sense of humour. "The Rules of Acting" is hugely entertaining; it will keep you laughing throughout as Mr S describes what can befall a thespian wannabe, and, like one of his stage performances, leave you longing for more.
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on 9 April 2014
I have read 2 Michael Simkins books before, both about his great love of cricket. As I am also a cricket nut they were easy to identify with. However the Rules of Acting opening was hysterically funny. This level of humour would be impossible to maintain,without causing the reader dire consequences on the toilet front. Michael Simkins is one amusing and happy guy, and of course a multi talented actor. Looking forward to his next.
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