Harpo's story, told in his own words, is absolutely enthralling. His account of his poverty-stricken childhood in 1890s New York is particularly fascinating, and a very timely read for anyone inclined to wax sentimental about the 'good old days'. There are no good old days here, just a grim struggle for survival in a shoddy tenement building. The Marx parents are vivivdly described, the father, gentle Frenchie, a lousy tailor but a wonderful cook, and Minnie, his burningly ambitious mother, without whose drive and vision there would have been no Marx Brothers (a thought too awful to contemplate). Harpo tells of the brothers' early struggles in showbusiness, and the awfulness of touring, staying in horrible boarding houses and eating vile food. It is a relief to get to the part where they begin to be a success, and finally arrive on Broadway. Of central importance to Harpo was his friendship with critic and radio personality Alexander Woolcott, who features prominently in the middle part of the book. The later part of the book, which is mainly about his marriage and family life with his wife Susan is perhaps less fascinating than the rest of the book, but overally this is a memorable and enthralling read.