Author: (Colin) Bateman, 2010.
Genre: Crime Fiction. Black Comedy. Satire.
Other Details: Hardback. 375 pages.
The third in this series of playful send-ups of the crime/thriller genre has a cover tag line that reads Beauty is in the Eye of the Beheader. Dr. Yes of the title is a charismatic plastic surgeon with a client list of the rich and famous. When the wife of obscure and paranoid crime writer Augustine Wogan disappears shortly after entering Dr. Yes' exclusive clinic, he persuades the Small Bookseller with No Name to investigate. Of course, our neurotic hero soon finds himself up to his neck in murder, make-up and madness and comes face to face with the most gruesome serial killer since the last one.
Another brilliantly funny outing for the Small Bookseller with No Name and his minions. It is very like 'Black Books' with dollops of murder and mayhem. I still think that some of the crime fiction references go over my head though I have enough familiarity with the genre to get a fair few of them. Great fun if you enjoy satire.
Author: Stephen Fry, 2010.
Genre: Autobiography. Memoir.
Other Details: Hardback.448 pages Unabridged audio; Length: 12 hours, 28 mins
This second volume of Stephen Fry's memoirs picks up from his 1997 Moab is My Washpot and covers the period from his entry to Cambridge University in 1979 and then charts his subsequent rise to fame, ending just after his 30th birthday in 1987.
I don't often read autobiographies or memoirs but this was chosen by one of my reading groups as its June selection. Still I was fairly confident that Stephen Fry's intelligence, charm, and wit would make this an enjoyable read and I was right. It also is written with a refreshing candour, which makes it very accessible.
Although I did have the print book to hand, I chose to mainly listen to the book on audio. I found this ideal as Stephen Fry has such a rich voice and it was like sitting down for an hour or so a day and listening to someone recount stories of their younger years. Although on occasion he popped about in time, in general it was a very fluid account. I also found it quite a nostalgic journey as he recalled England of the 1980s. I do look forward to his next instalment even though I know that will be a darker journey.