This book was a grave disappointment to me. Sadly, it is the only biog of Horne to emerge and will probably remain that way as very few of his peers and colleagues are still alive to be interviewed. Hackforth loves his subject - justifiably so, as Horne was a charming, witty and warm-hearted man who delighted almost everyone who knew him. However, Hackforth stops short of exploring the more complex side of Horne's nature. Kenneth Horne was clearly a character and had a complicated personal life. Whilst this book does a competent job of giving you the details of his life, you will probably not come away feeling that you know him any better. Also - and this is a personal view - Hackforth's style is, at times, insufferable. Liberal use of "Anyway!" and similar exclamations at the start of paragraphs and innumerable references to how 'lovely' Horne was will wear you down. All in all, this book is more of an affectionate, sepia-tinted tribute rather than a serious attempt to get close to one of the more enigmatic figures of 1950s-60s British light entertainment.
I really enjoyed reading this book. I had forgotten it was available. As an old friend, Norman Hackforth knew Kenneth Horne very well. The only downside of the book, for me, was it showed that Kenneth Horne did not have the happy family life that most of us take for granted. He was a comedy genius who is sadly missed even today