Top critical review
You'll find out soon I think.
on 4 March 2014
I'll start off by declaring an interest, in that I find Milton Jones one of the funniest comedians on the circuit today. Unfortunately that doesn't guarantee that he's also a good author, as this book proves. If Jones didn't have an established reputation i doubt this book would ever have seen the light of day.
The book tells the story of the journey(s), both literal and metaphorical, of Jerome Stevens, a wannabe stand-up comedian as he starts out in tiny comedy clubs and works his way up to the big time. Its told in a series of "stream of consciousness" anecdotes during car, bus, train and aeroplane journeys, wioth a few diversions to hotels, dressing rooms, theatres and his home. There are spikes of humour, but this isn't a humorous book, as Jones explains in his foreword. Unfortuantely it isn't anything else either. It isn't dramatic, tragic, insightful or inspiring. There is a sub plot in which the Jerome's sister suffers from cancer and eventually dies, but the tragedy of that situation is shallowly told and evokes no emotion. There is also a sub plot about the Jerome being held in a Chinese prison for a short period, which doesn't have any feeling of tension, conflict or drama. Its another metaphor, of course, but one which fails to evoke any fresh insight into the character other than that he doesn't like being in jail.
There is the odd spark of wit or wisdom, which is what kept me reading, but more out of loyalty towards Jones the comedian than to Jones the author. I'd recommend giving it a miss.