Top critical review
Could have been combined with book three without losing much of the story
on 20 October 2016
This is the second instalment of Paul O'Grady's autobiography. I haven't read the first but I'm not sure that'll matter. I don't watch or listen to his shows but have always admired how he has forged his career in the entertainment industry. The author appears to be witty, intelligent and articulate so I was expecting big things of this book.
Gradually, Paul tells his story, interspersed by small portraits of the society in which he lives. Many elements of his upbringing will trigger memories for those reading, for example, the fish man selling cockles and whelks in the pub.
It's pleasing that the author hasn't gone for the shock factor which would have been an easy option given the combination of a young, gay man's lifestyle and an elderly, female fan base. Lots of experiences remain unsaid but he doesn't gloss over how he is effected by those around him.
Very people manage to produce more than a couple of volumes in an autobiography and that seems sensible. Whilst Paul has lived a full life I struggle to see that he can drag it out to four books (so far!). I would have liked to see him cover more time through this book - I haven't read the third volume but have read a summary of it and it sounds as though he could have combined the two into one volume without losing too much.
This is an enjoyable book to read but doesn't cover enough of the authors process through life so feels slow at times. It's written in a very amusing way though and is worth reading to enjoy the style if you are interested in Paul O'Grady.