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The Fry Chronicles by Stephen Fry

The Fry Chronicles (original 2010; edition 2010)

by Stephen Fry

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1,393475,452 (3.78)49
Title:The Fry Chronicles
Authors:Stephen Fry
Info:London : Michael Joseph, 2010.
Collections:Your library
Tags:Read 2012 November

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The Fry Chronicles by Stephen Fry (2010)


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Showing 1-5 of 46 (next | show all)
Some books are very good in general, but wear out their welcome about halfway through - and sometimes you are aware before you are halfway through that the book is going to wear out its welcome soon, and that makes it worse. This is one of those books. Very clever in many parts, but too bogged down in minutiae, so that it takes more than 400 pages to detail an approximately seven year period in the author's life. Perhaps I expected too much. I expected it to be on a par with Jules Feiffer's marvelous autobiography, but the author here is too self-conscious, trying too hard at times to live up to his reputation as a wit, and too apologetic for being intellectually oriented. Really, it does get tedious after the first 34 mentions that he sees himself basically as a twit because he had the benefit of a Cambridge education, and feels like that somehow makes him inauthentic. Also, I have learned in my life to steer clear of people who proclaim loudly that they are a Mac user...this merely reinforced that conviction as he looked down his nose at non-Mac users who he feels are inherently delusional, or something. Another group to steer clear of is those who feel they need to lecture non-smokers about how radical, rebellious, and coolly artistically creative it is to be a smoker, and the rest of the world are Puritan prudish bullies. Unfortunately, Fry falls in both categories. That isn't to say there weren't delightful moments. A great editor could have made this a great book. ( )
1 vote quantum_flapdoodle | Aug 13, 2016 |
There's an awful lot of "I" even for an autobiography. He's funny it's true, smart too, it's true, awkwardly honest in a i-hope-you-will-like-me-more-for-my-self-deprecation kind of way. Earnestly trying to be relaxed. But a fascinating man, with such a love of language. He describes a generously admiring and warm view of his famous friends. ( )
  TheBookJunky | Apr 22, 2016 |
I'd rate this somewhere between 2 and 3 stars...it was okay, sometimes quite amusing but mostly I got sick of Fry talking about how hard it's been to accept the fact that he has talent. I liked Stephen Fry a lot better before I read this book and I won't read any others. ( )
  Oodles | Feb 16, 2016 |
Usually interesting, occasionally dry, occasionally laugh out loud, look at Stephen Fry's life from his college years to his first steps out into the world of entertainment, with wanderings into his life here and there as the mood takes him. At times an uncomfortably honest look at himself, which resonates with this reader. ( )
  quiBee | Jan 21, 2016 |
Fry Chronicles is a fun, very witty and quite brilliant book. As well as being an honest and revealing look into his early life, it also offers a great view into the era of comedy when he was starting out. The amount of people he remembers, and has met, is amazing. His vivid description of the life in Cambridge is truly a treat.
Sometimes his apologetic way of writing does get overbearing, almost as if he would justify his own shortcomings as long as he recognizes them first and acknowledges them too. But one cannot but help to admire his honesty and verbal skill. A brilliant read for anyone with a fondness for the British. Or actors. Or Stephen Fry. Or Cambridgeans.
  Heps | Nov 25, 2015 |
Showing 1-5 of 46 (next | show all)
This is, above all else, a thoughtful book. And namedroppy too, and funny, and marbled with melancholy throughout. Its camaraderie of tone lets it wear its learning lightly yet leaves you with a hoaching number of new insights, new ways of looking at things, from snobbery to reality-TV contestants. The mask is now firmly on, and he grows into it each day, not least early last week in the Festival Hall, at his mammoth broadcast book launch, when he strode on stage as if lent – no, willingly given, for ever – the confidence of half of England, and was welcomed with the roars and love of the other half. Yet this book is a painfully honest attempt to tear the mask aside, for us. We are, if we are not damnably incurious, splendidly the better for it.
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I really must stop saying sorry; it doesn't make things any better or worse.
And, of course, no reason why anyone should care. Unless you are curious, in which case I love you, for curiosity about the world and all it's corners is a beautiful thing, even if those corners are as uncool as the cloisters of Oxbridge.
If you are hungry for food you are prepared to hunt high and low for it. If you are hungry for information it is the same. Information is all around us, now more than ever before in human history. You are barely able to stir or incommode yourself to find things out. The only reason people do not know much is because they do not care to know. They are incurious. Incuriosity is the oddest and most foolish failing there is.
I loathed committee meetings then and I loathe them now. My whole life has been a fight to avoid them as much as possible. A losing fight. I would so much rather do things than talk about doing them. Those who sit in committee rooms rule the world, of course, which is lovely if that is what you want to do, but those who rule the world get so little opportunity to run about and laugh and play in it.
The human cultural jungle should be as varied and plural as the Amazonian rainforest. We are all richer for biodiversity. We may decide that a puma is worth more to us than a caterpillar, but surely we can agree that the habitat is all the better for being able to sustain each. Monocultures are uninhabitably dull and end as deserts.
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Much loved by the public and his peers, Stephen Fry is one of the most influential cultural forces in Britain. This dazzling memoir promises to be a courageously frank, honest and poignant read. It details some of the most turbulent and least well known years of his life with writing that will excite you, make you laugh uproariously, move you, inform you and, above all, surprise you.… (more)

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Penguin Australia

2 editions of this book were published by Penguin Australia.

Editions: 0141041587, 0141039809

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