It is near impossible not to love the superlative Mr Stephen Fry.
From the first chapter to the final page The Fry Chronicles dishes out tasty tidbits and positively loquacious prose. Spanning 8 years, it picks up where his first memoir – the mysteriously titled Moab is My Washpot – left off, the summer before his inauguration to Queens’ College at Cambridge. His college years focused (somewhat ironically, as he wanted to be a teacher) little on academia and heavily on acting and his introduction to comedy.
Chummed with Emma Thompson and Hugh Laurie, their quick procession through university into television moves swiftly. The most enjoyable passages for me were Fry’s self-deprecating reflections on his writing, smoking a pipe, and general ecstasy as he gained notoriety and quickly became a full-time computer nerd and writer. While many of the anecdotes about fruitless collaborations with comedy peers like Ben Elton and Rik Mayall became stale, his reflections on book reviewing in the age of motorcycle messengers is a marvel.
Though I didn’t love it, the first 200 pages were certainly more enjoyable than the last. Fry’s verbosity quickly grows tiresome, particularly for memoir addicts like me. If you’re a Fry enthusiast, however, I urge you to check it out for yourself.
Housekeeping! Apologies for my recent hiatus, but I’m pleased to announce that this is Uncultured Critic’s 100th post! I’ve never kept a blog this meticulously, so thank you all so much for reading and for your brilliant, regular, & thoughtful comments. I will be posting twice weekly for the time being on Tuesdays & Thursdays with the odd Saturday thrown in. Don’t forget you can follow me by RSS, on Twitter, or on Facebook for regular updates. As always, your thoughts are really valuable, so if you have any comments or suggestions, don’t hesitate to contact me. Have a great week!