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BOOK OF THE MONTH
THE MAIDENS (HB)
Alex Michaelides
899

We all keep secrets. Even from ourselves.


'A thrilling, heart-in-throat...(+)
Author Spotlight

Quentin Tarantino's long-awaited first work of fiction - at once hilarious, delicious, and brutal ...(+)

  Quentin Tarantino  
 
 
 
What Am I Still Doing Here?
Roger Lewis

Classification : Biography & Memoir
Pub Date : May 10, 2012
Imprint : Coronet
Page Extent : 320
Binding : PB
ISBN : 9781444708691
Price : 575

About the book
Loveable... Dreadful... Amazing... Learned... Baroque... Exquisite... Utterly wonderful... Uplifting... Stupendously Acute... Very scary... Genuinely mad...Having written acclaimed biographies of uncompromising and glittering geniuses such as Peter Sellers, Laurence Olivier, Carry On star Charles Hawtrey, and Anthony Burgess, of A Clockwork Orange fame, Roger Lewis, rotund, dark and difficult, has at long last stumbled upon the greatest monster of all - himself.As with bestselling and beloved Seasonal Suicide Notes, in this new book Lewis has produced a funny and appalling self-portrait, crammed with his clashes and frustrations.The calamities he describes, however, such as coming a pathetic fifth in the Oxford Chair of Poetry Election or throwing a party in what turned out to be a Cornish old peoples' home, are always offset by beautiful riffs - about Seville, a city he can't keep away from; or the train ride from Salzburg to Venice, where he stays in the restaurant car so long he alights in Zagreb by mistake; or the lush flowering magnolias he sees at Agatha Christie's house on the River Dart.It was when Lewis suggested in the press that Agatha Christie was a lesbian that the death threats began.Hearing the overture to Iolanthe played on Radio Three, and his own name mentioned by the announcer, Lewis is conveyed back to his extraordinary Welsh past, where Gilbert & Sullivan was put on in the village hall, and where Roger Lewis knew at once that his destiny was to become Evil Fairy, complete with wand.Who is to say he has not succeeded in this ambition?What Am I Still Doing Here? will win its author hordes more passionate devotees.

Read Review   Want to write a review?

What Am I Still Doing Here? by Roger Lewis is one of those reads that is full of grumpy, thunderous, brilliantly funny observations

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'Enormously entertaining... It is generous, sincere and intelligent, and shows that Lewis is more than just the angry buffoon he paints himself as.'

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'Lewis is a marvellously wayward spirit, as well-versed in lavatory humour as in the classics, capable of taking in the gutter and the stars at a single glance.' 5*

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'There's nobody else in the history of the world who is simultaneously as crude and dangerous or so gentle and poetic... Lewis, with his original and eloquent voice is nothing less than heroic.'

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He can be lethally catty and he also has an unfailingly sharp eye for absurdity. He is wonderfully funny, with a uniquely skewed take on the world.'

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'The jokes come thick and fast, the humour runs deep and dark. Among the belly laughs, Roger Lewis gifts us plenty of thought-provoking diamonds.'

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'The funniest book of the year. What Am I Still Doing Here?  by Roger Lewis is a wonderfully splenetic journal - part-diary, part-diatribe - by a man who rages with an indignant eloquence against the modern world. But Lewis' furious rants are never far from hilarity, and his anger is redeemed by flashes of pur poetry. Like all the best comics, Lewis is a disappointed optimist rather than an outright cynic, and it's this thwarted idealism which makes this such a liberating, life-affirming read.'

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'Roger Lewis's new memoir takes us on an anarchic rollercoaster ride through what is probably the nearest thing to an autobiography he will ever write. Numerous hilarious routines jostle in the pages for attention. Lewis's strength is that behind all his acrobatics there is a richly stocked intellect at the controls. Stylistically he is ultramodern, a deracinated 'everyman; for the 21st century.

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'Uproariously funny, tremendously clever and irresistibly lovable'

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There is only one writer alive today who is as mordantly funny as Kingsley Amis, as acute about human misery as Philip Larkin, and as brilliant in skewering pretension and vanity as both. His name is Roger Lewis... Nothing funnier or wise has been published all year. If you love someone buy them this book. If they don't appreciate the gift then purge them from your life.

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'Unremittingly glorious. I and the world demand more and we shall thump our tin mugs on the table demanding it until we are satisfied.'

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Roger Lewis
Books by Roger Lewis
What Am I Still Doing Here? (HB)