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David Jones

Frank Skinner

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Yes, I read that too. The best parts are his earlier life, before he became famous. Skinner can be summed up in the words of his namesake Mike (ie the bloke who is The Streets), "You're funny but my gosh don't you know it." He described this one meeting where you could tell, reading between the lines, that he was behaving like a complete arsehole and making everyone who works for him's lives are a complete misery - but he was still attempting to win the reader's sympathy for his plight.

 

The subtext of a lot of it seemed to be, "I know I'm great - and I want you to know it too."

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Here is the link:

 

<iframe width="180" height="180" scrolling="no" frameborder=0 src="http://rcm-uk.amazon.co.uk/e/cm?t=bookgrouponli-21&l=st1&search=frank%20skinner%20autobiography&mode=books-uk&p=33&o=2&f=ifr&bg1=C6E7DE&lc1=082984&lt1=_blank"> <table border='0' cellpadding='0' cellspacing='0' width='468' height='362'><tr><td><A HREF='http://www.amazon.co.uk/exec/obidos/redirect-home/bookgrouponli-21' target=_blank ><img src="http://images-eu.amazon.com/images/G/02/associates/recommends/default_180x180.gif" width=180 height=180 border="0" access=regular></a></td></tr></table></iframe>

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I thought it was great book, and even thought he was being honest. His drinking days are hardly him trying to make himself likeable. And I liked the interweaving of the "current" year (as he was writing the book) with his early days.

 

Suprised he was, and still is, a staunch catholic.

 

If I had one gripe it was his talk of money. That was a "look at me, I'm rich, me" part that made me think of Harry Enfield's emotionally dead character, "I yam considerably richer than yow."

 

The one thing I don't remember is him waffling on about footie.

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I read this a couple of years back and really liked it too. I was surprised at how open he was and in hindsight I think he did himself a disservice. I think he came across as sneering and superficial and while I admire his bravery in a "no holds barred" approach, I find him distinctly distasteful now. I don't watch the Unplanneds with the same enjoyment at all.

 

I do remember the football. I still keep an eye on West Brom for him (and I haven't the first clue about football). I can also see how some people might find it offensive in places (e.g. he constantly refers to particular sex acts).

 

Rebecca

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I too read this a couple of years back and I agree on the 'distasteful' tag. He did come across as being somewhat seedy and he didn't hold back on his descriptions of his post-event preying upon anything in a dress/skirt/trousers etc. However, I did feel for him when West Brom managed to avoid relegation from The Premiership the other weekend. For a self-confessed reformed-alcoholic, who is consistently battling against his inner demons, it must have pushed him to the very limits of his considerable resistance to say 'no' to a quick one for the road. One has to admire him for that at least.

 

A far better trash/celebrity/tv/film autobiography must surely be 'With Nails' by Richard E Grant, which is a joyous romp through his paranoid, self-deprecating rise to celluloid acclaim. It is a shame though that his venture into fiction ('By Design'), missed the mark by a country mile. Why dress the truth up as fiction when you can tell it like it is? He was much better at name-dropping (Madonna, Bruce Willis, Steve Martin et al) than he was at trying to cover-up who he was actually alluding to.

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I also read this a few years ago, sat on a beach on Anglesey - I laughed and laughed out loud much to the amusement of my husband and discomfort of my daughters. It is a bit on the seedy side in places but rather than put me off the fellow, it just made him seem a bit more endearing.

 

Which is probably not a good thing to admit.

 

;)

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    • By Minxminnie
      This is, I suppose, Frank Skinner's sequel to his autobiography. He focuses on the genesis and execution of his recent British tour, which was his return to stand up.
      I struggled with the diary format for a bit, finding it a bit stilted, but I began to enjoy it. He's very candid about his own insecurities and paranoia, and I found this quite illuminating. I went to see a stand up comedian last night, and the book very much made me see the gig from his perspective.
      I'm also quite impressed by Skinner's willingness, or even need, to talk about his faith, while acknowledging that it isn't something which will make him seem cool. In fact, he talks about himself as a weirdo-loner-type all the way through.
      The book is very episodic and rambling in places, but there are some lovely vignettes, like when his flat becomes invaded by flies.
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