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Following on from his hugely successful books, Moab is My Washpot and The Fry Chronicles, comes the third chapter in Stephen Fry's life. This unabridged, downloadable audiobook edition of More Fool Me is performed by Stephen Fry himself. Following on from his hugely successful books, Moab is My Washpot and The Fry Chronicles, comes the third chapter in Stephen Fry's life. This unabridged, downloadable audiobook edition of More Fool Me is performed by Stephen Fry himself.


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Following on from his hugely successful books, Moab is My Washpot and The Fry Chronicles, comes the third chapter in Stephen Fry's life. This unabridged, downloadable audiobook edition of More Fool Me is performed by Stephen Fry himself. Following on from his hugely successful books, Moab is My Washpot and The Fry Chronicles, comes the third chapter in Stephen Fry's life. This unabridged, downloadable audiobook edition of More Fool Me is performed by Stephen Fry himself.

30 review for More Fool Me

  1. 4 out of 5

    Lex

    Oh deary dearingtons, as Stephen himself would say (probably). I must confess, I enjoyed Stephen's first two novels greatly. And Moab is my Washpot and The Fry Chronicles were both such wonderful volumes. They showcased all that is great about Stephen; his boundless wit, his unutterable charm and his gift for introspective self-reflection that demonstrates such depth of character. Not to mention of course, his scintillating use of language that had me laughing, crying, and racing through them, de Oh deary dearingtons, as Stephen himself would say (probably). I must confess, I enjoyed Stephen's first two novels greatly. And Moab is my Washpot and The Fry Chronicles were both such wonderful volumes. They showcased all that is great about Stephen; his boundless wit, his unutterable charm and his gift for introspective self-reflection that demonstrates such depth of character. Not to mention of course, his scintillating use of language that had me laughing, crying, and racing through them, desperate for more insights into this fascinating man's life. This... was not exactly what I had in mind for the third installment. Granted, memoirs tend, as a rule, to be less interesting when a person finds great fame and fortune, as Stephen so clearly has. What can one say of interest, really, when days are filled with celeb lunches, punishing filming rehearsals and luvvie theatre dates? Unless one is prepared to spill the beans and reveal showbiz goss, there's not a lot to be said that's all that interesting. But, I was hoping, this book would prove me wrong. It did not. In fact, it gave me a great smugness that I am 100% right with that notion. Well done me. Anyway, onto why it was so rubbish. The structure is a strange choice to say the least. I don't mind the meandering backwards and forwards through time (though that will grate on some, I'm sure) so much as the fact that there's very little original material in there. What I mean by that is, the first third is quite clearly a rehash of the first two volumes of his autobiographies. It was nice to hear stories from his childhood again (discovering Oscar Wilde in a mobile library, so to speak, is one of my favourites I think) but I found myself anxiously skipping through to see just how long this would go on for. I, naturally, being a fan of Stephen's, was quite happy to go through it all again, but I did wonder when we were going to get to the meat of the thing... But ah! Around 3 hours in (I purchased the book on audiobook, much preferring to enjoy Stephen's dulcet tones in my ears. Oh, and the far lighter price tag*), there was the meat I had so been hoping for. But wait a minute, this is not the fillet steak I asked for, this is last night's Mcdonald's burger. It was all so concerned with The Groucho, cocaine, other celebs, The Groucho, cocaine, dinners, The Groucho... did I mention cocaine? Lots of class A substances but no real substance, if you'll indulge me. I listened to it all skeptically. Wait a minute, was I supposed to find this somehow... cool? It all had a bit of an "I was there man, I saw it happen" vibe that made me uneasy. I can see how Stephen's peers may find all this a revelation ("Liam Gallagher, smashing a hole in the ceiling with a pool cue! On drugs! Now really!") I found it rather tame. A bit gauche, in fact, as well as slightly embarrassing. A bit like the literary equivalent of one's uncle drinking too much brandy at Christmas and singing karaoke, thinking he's Mick Jagger. Granted, there are a few little bon mots in that middle section that made me smile, but that was it really. Most of it concerned other terribly rich and famous people doing not very interesting things. Stephen, being Stephen, barely had a bad word to say about anyone. The last part of the book contained some of the most dull diary entries I could possibly have imagined. They really did confirm the worst ideas one has of a celebrity- shallow, spoilt luvvies who are overly precious, namedrop at any opportunity and are so neurotic it's bordering on the parodical. A typical entry is as follows; "Bit hungover this morning but pushing on. Hugh came over for some writing, then lunch at The Ivy (tasty tuck) and went on to the opera with Alyce Cleese. Then out to dinner at Orso with Emma T, Ken B, Tony S and co. Then onto The Groucho where I played poker and did a gram of charlie. Came home and wrote a little, did the crossword. What a bad boy I am! Bugger. Nighty nightingtons." I mean to say, if you are not literally vomiting right down yourself in sheer and abject boredom and horror then you've got a stronger constitution than I have. He wrapped it all up with this weird life lesson parable bullshit that I found totally against the tone of the thing and completely insincere. Overall, certainly not worth it. If you're a fan of Stephen's as I once was (I use the past tense not because of this dull book, boring as it is, but because of the transphobic, misogynistic, generally wanky things he's taken to saying over the past few years) read Moab is My Washpot and maybe The Fry Chronicles. Don't read this, unless you're one of his friends, in which case you're probably referenced extensively in this book. Then, when you see him, kiss him on the cheek and say, "darling, I loved it!" whilst crossing your fingers behind your back. *Not so much of an issue for me, as patience would have probably found a gratis copy in my hands but £25? Really? Outrageous!

  2. 4 out of 5

    Felix Hayman

    More fool me I like Stephen Fry. I don't like this book. It is a lazy assemblage of diary entries, confessional, anecdote and needs an editor.... desperately More fool me I like Stephen Fry. I don't like this book. It is a lazy assemblage of diary entries, confessional, anecdote and needs an editor.... desperately

  3. 4 out of 5

    Margitte

    Well, I was driving along the country lanes on Wednesday, six hours of mountain passes with bucolic bliss spread out like angel wings around me, when I made an effort to listen to this audio book which haunted me for so long now. Stephen Fry, in his own voice and words, entertained me with his own version of his life. Let's face it, this gentleman has a perfect, cultured British voice, a pleasure to listen to. He has the self-respect and confidence to make fun of himself, and uses his wit and in Well, I was driving along the country lanes on Wednesday, six hours of mountain passes with bucolic bliss spread out like angel wings around me, when I made an effort to listen to this audio book which haunted me for so long now. Stephen Fry, in his own voice and words, entertained me with his own version of his life. Let's face it, this gentleman has a perfect, cultured British voice, a pleasure to listen to. He has the self-respect and confidence to make fun of himself, and uses his wit and intellect to describe a life of drugs, alcohol, family, friends, and a British milieu of privilege and prestige. He had me listening intensely, laughing out loud, giggling and grunting, and enjoying a trip that would have been very different otherwise. I came back today along the same route and couldn't wait to hit the long way home with my earphones plugged in before I even started the vehicle. He doesn't plead for sympathy, neither empathy. He tells it like it is, with a gentle, respectful approach to all the famous people he met and mingled with in his impressive career as one of Britain's most prominent entertainers. Some of the incidences were downright hilarious. But he also shared his own bipolar condition and how he sunk away deeper into the dark muddy, smothering world of drugs and alcohol. He shares his opinion on the legalization of drugs. Since falling in love with My Fair Lady - the play, the musical, the whole shebang, having it on video, attending the play about ten times, watching the movie about 20 more times, I just enjoy the concept of being British. Remember professor Higgins trying to civilize Eliza Doolittle with elocution lessons, and accusing her of being ... 'oh so deliciously common'? Well, one of the delights in my life is to meet British people. As soon as I hear their accent - the one Stephen Fry and professor Higgins is so perfectly schooled in, I always tell them how I enjoy them being so deliciously British. It is simply a joy to listen to that particular version of the British language. Pure delight. Oxford English at its finest. The memories are not particularly earth-moving. Young man grows up in the country, has a sort of privileged background, not really wealthy, but moving in the upper circles; attending the right schools; goes to prison and learns a lesson; turns his life around and voilá, he becomes an internationally well-known persona who entertains millions of people around the English speaking world with his own version of humor and intelligent wit. The charm of this memoir lies in the way this part of his life story is presented. I haven't read the other two books in this three-part series, but this one was a delight as an audio book. It felt like receiving honest, funny, lively, introspective letters from a dear friend, whom I have known for many years. This guy does not blame the world, his parents, his country, life, aliens or fresh air for his own choices. He loves life, he challenges everything, and just get on with it. I liked that. So yes, if you enjoy memoirs, consider this one as well.

  4. 4 out of 5

    BrokenTune

    2.5* Memoir, the act of literary remembering, for me seems to take the form of a kind of dialogue with my former self. What are you doing? Why are you behaving like that? Who do you think you are fooling? Stop it! Don’t do that! Look out! Books, too, can take the form of a dialogue. I flatter myself, vainly perhaps, that I have been having a dialogue with you. You might think this madness. I am delivering a monologue and you are either paying attention or wearily zipping through the paragraphs un 2.5* Memoir, the act of literary remembering, for me seems to take the form of a kind of dialogue with my former self. What are you doing? Why are you behaving like that? Who do you think you are fooling? Stop it! Don’t do that! Look out! Books, too, can take the form of a dialogue. I flatter myself, vainly perhaps, that I have been having a dialogue with you. You might think this madness. I am delivering a monologue and you are either paying attention or wearily zipping through the paragraphs until you reach the end. Never a truer word. As much as I like, even adore, Stephen Fry, I cannot say that I enjoyed this third instalment of his autobiography. The first part of the book basically retold the parts of Fry's life that were detailed in Moab is My Washpot and The Fry Chronicles. Catching up with these parts would have been ok if the rest of this book had made for it with an account of the next part of his memoir that was written in the same engaging style as Moab or the Chronicles. Unfortunately, this doesn't happen. What follows the re-cap of his earlier life is an excerpt of Fry's diary recorded in 1993. But that is just it. There is little commentary from Fry on the diary entries which as a result read like a mere listing of dates, events, (famous) names, and an account of just how much coke he scored. In fact apart from the way that these uncommented entries make Fry look and sound like a bit of a tosser, there was a major part of his life that is hinted at but that actually is never brought up: What made him re-consider his coke habit? All the way through the book, he goes on about how "naughty" or "debauched" his behaviour and especially his cocaine habit were, but there seemed to be something missing - most of the book goes on to show how his habit fuelled his enormous output of work during this period, without any apparent consequences. How do you get from this to a short couple of paragraphs warning people not to copy his indulgences because they will surely die??? I'm under no impression that the Stephen Fry of 1993, whose diary I found grating and who seemed quite arrogant, patronising, and sometimes even rude in his address or description of people he thought less skilled or less intellectual than himself, may have (and probably has!) developed into the person who wrote the compassionate, introspective, and discursive volumes that are Moab and The Fry Chronicles. That aspect of Fry, his discussion of issues, is what is missing from More Fool Me.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Sam

    Let's do a quick history lesson. Get the obvious out of the way. Bear with me for a little while, and worry not, our author won't mind my digression; he himself expends seventy pages telling us what we already know, so he'll not complain now. 'Moab is my Washpot' is one of the best books on the Biography shelves of your beloved local bookshop and no doubt boosted boisterously by the most bonhomous of the booksellers. It's a pained and desperate book, told with true brilliancy of style and generos Let's do a quick history lesson. Get the obvious out of the way. Bear with me for a little while, and worry not, our author won't mind my digression; he himself expends seventy pages telling us what we already know, so he'll not complain now. 'Moab is my Washpot' is one of the best books on the Biography shelves of your beloved local bookshop and no doubt boosted boisterously by the most bonhomous of the booksellers. It's a pained and desperate book, told with true brilliancy of style and generosity of insight. If one wants to be political about it, then one would call it one of the greatest gay books ever written. 'The Fry Chronicles' is a warmly, sweetly told tale of the transition between the anti-social dervish of 'Moab' to the national treasure of that one Mr. Weebl song, and though it rather loses steam towards the end, and is not nearly as vicious in its probing as the first volume, it is still "a questioning of one's past self." That definition of memoir, incidentally, is Fry's own. It's found at the end of 'More Fool Me', a book in which he describes much and questions nothing at all. 'Moab' extends across close on twenty years. 'Chronicles' covers ten years more, and ended on a cliffhanger - unusual, perhaps, for a biography - that promised to explore what sprang from Fry's first snort of cocaine. Read this follow-up and you'll have a palpable sense of six months rushing by in a coked-out haze. 'More Fool Me' is, to be as charitable as one can be after shooting through it in a single bored and boring go, a structural mess. Those first seventy pages are a synopsising of events already covered in the first two volumes. The temptation to give a Wodehousian recap is understandable, but Wodehouse could get newcomers up to speed on Bertie Wooster in the space of page. It's been less than half a decade since the publication of the 'Chronicles', one of the bestsellers of 2010; is it not fair to assume that we know much of this already? The next hundred or so pages are the actual meat of the tale (Fry stepping into the nineties with a great film of powder lining his right nostril), and it's all just so much gristle - description abounds, and insight hasn't bothered to show up for work. If you happen to be largely teetotal but are endlessly curious as to the effects of cocaine powder on a man who has done substantially more interesting things than snorting cocaine powder, then you are A) perfectly suited to 'More Fool Me', and B) in an audience bracket so small you're probably purely hypothetical, in which case I am amazed you're even reading this, you nonexistant figment. Some short time before your teeth are beginning to set themselves on a fine edge, there appears this little doozy: "It should go without saying that and must be apparent if you read on and find out what damage I believe this noxious yet maddeningly beguiling substance did to me that I wouldn't recommend cocaine to my worst enemy." It's a quote less interesting for its moral evasiveness than for the promise it makes. Read on, good sirs and madams, and I shall do my best to understand why I made the choices I made, ingested the chemicals I ingested, behaved the way I behaved, and together we shall try and understand. The business of memoir, as Fry himself defines it above, in a single sentence. Fine by us. But the last (nearly) two hundred pages are that promise being tossed aside. A chapter entitled 'Dear Diary' begins, and engulfs the book; a grotesquely large chunk of Fry's diaries from 1993 are forcibly inserted into the tale, and the book, essentially, clocks off for its own long lunch. It's actually quite remarkable how boring a cycle of dropped names - those of celebrities, clubs, celebrities, hotels, dealers, celebrities, drugs and celebrities - can really be. This is not exactly Bret Easton Ellis; not an 'American Psycho'-style unpicking of the way in which endlessly repeated behaviour patterns in a cossetted environment of luxury will do all sorts of interesting things to the brain. It is mere recitation only; a copying out with a couple of footnotes added to excuse the lack of real work. Is there no pleasure to be had from 'More Fool Me'? Yes, of course there is. I realize how very mean I am being here, and I care for it as little as anyone else. Stephen Fry's voice, so to speak, remains ever beguiling no matter what he is saying; it is a voice so distinctive that it cannot help but absorb, amuse, and comfort. No-one sounds like Fry, and no-one reads quite like him either. This is a thoughtless recollection, but not a dishonest one, it seems. Perhaps that will be enough for a superfan. Perhaps one should not hope for a sudden dropping-out beneath their feet, like 'Moab', all over again. But it's hardly unfair to be disappointed in a memoir that feels as if it simply can't be bothered with the business of biography.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Paul E. Morph

    Another entertaining volume of Mr. Fry's memoirs. Like the previous volume, however, it spends too long at the beginning recapping the previous book(s). Another entertaining volume of Mr. Fry's memoirs. Like the previous volume, however, it spends too long at the beginning recapping the previous book(s).

  7. 4 out of 5

    Liz

    It started quite well, but I felt cheated by all the diary entries from the early 90s that took up a major part of the book. It gave the impression SF was just trying to make up the word count and had lost all interest in the book. I'd much rather have read his memories of that time, the best bits drawn out and summarised, than relentless day-by-day accounts of all the celebrities he'd mingled with at plays and posh dinners, and all the lines of coke he'd snorted. It became quite boring after a It started quite well, but I felt cheated by all the diary entries from the early 90s that took up a major part of the book. It gave the impression SF was just trying to make up the word count and had lost all interest in the book. I'd much rather have read his memories of that time, the best bits drawn out and summarised, than relentless day-by-day accounts of all the celebrities he'd mingled with at plays and posh dinners, and all the lines of coke he'd snorted. It became quite boring after a while.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Dregj

    Manages to make Cocaine boring. His actual career of fascinating TV shows ,books and comedy takes a back seat to his addiction. At a certain point in this mess of a "cant be bothered" book he simply photocopies his dairies from the 90s and slings them in there as a final insult to the people who paid for this rubbish. Manages to make Cocaine boring. His actual career of fascinating TV shows ,books and comedy takes a back seat to his addiction. At a certain point in this mess of a "cant be bothered" book he simply photocopies his dairies from the 90s and slings them in there as a final insult to the people who paid for this rubbish.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Gemma ♕ antari.and.the.books

    Hmmmmm...More like 3.5. I so wanted to enjoy this and I did enjoy a lot of it but the reading of the diary, which is written in minuscule detail, was just a bit monotonous for me. I got what he was trying to show but it just started to drag. The book started so well, some wonderfully, brutally honest moments, but that last 20-30% let it down. Such a shame as I love Stephen Fry and listening to him narrate is always a pleasure. Look, that massive diary section just made it so hard to get into...I Hmmmmm...More like 3.5. I so wanted to enjoy this and I did enjoy a lot of it but the reading of the diary, which is written in minuscule detail, was just a bit monotonous for me. I got what he was trying to show but it just started to drag. The book started so well, some wonderfully, brutally honest moments, but that last 20-30% let it down. Such a shame as I love Stephen Fry and listening to him narrate is always a pleasure. Look, that massive diary section just made it so hard to get into...I mean, it took me a damn month to finish this!!! A MONTH! Sorry Stephen. Still love you but this was not for me.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Sean Kennedy

    Man, I love Stephen Fry but the last third of this book was a slog. Imagine reading the diary of a narcissistic actor who flits between lunches and then cocaine in the bog for dessert. Then have about a hundred entries of the same. After a while I was just imagining Homer as he remembers his night in Moe's, casting himself and his friends as members of the Algonquin set while reality sees them as drunken vomiting yahoos crashing cars and generally being people you wouldn't want to associate with Man, I love Stephen Fry but the last third of this book was a slog. Imagine reading the diary of a narcissistic actor who flits between lunches and then cocaine in the bog for dessert. Then have about a hundred entries of the same. After a while I was just imagining Homer as he remembers his night in Moe's, casting himself and his friends as members of the Algonquin set while reality sees them as drunken vomiting yahoos crashing cars and generally being people you wouldn't want to associate with.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Hannah

    I'm now going to write a review of this book, merely 3 minutes after letting my eyes slide off the last page, and I have to admit that there is a sliver of disappointment lingering. It might come down to the expectations I had of this book. After Fry Chronicles, which tended to drop too many names for my liking and relate to many show business anecdotes, I now expected Fry to talk about more personal matters, like his breakdown in 1995 etc. When I opened the book, I had hoped for a moving accoun I'm now going to write a review of this book, merely 3 minutes after letting my eyes slide off the last page, and I have to admit that there is a sliver of disappointment lingering. It might come down to the expectations I had of this book. After Fry Chronicles, which tended to drop too many names for my liking and relate to many show business anecdotes, I now expected Fry to talk about more personal matters, like his breakdown in 1995 etc. When I opened the book, I had hoped for a moving account in line with Moab is My Washpot (it remains the best instalment), but I have to confess that this book will probably not leave much of a dent in my memory. The review contains minor spoilers, starting below. It began rather well and the last pages ended not too bad - thus these parts were the most profound to my mind. The first part, Early Days, with its introduction to his cocaine addiction and the last pages, which proves a solemn meditation on life of apparent self-destruction, is well-written, interesting and to some extent moving. The two parts in between gives you mainly showbusiness anecdotes which becomes quite dreary after they've been going on for 200 pages. That Fry chose to dedicate over 100 pages to old diary entries only felt like a trick to fill out the book. While I understand Fry's intention to use these entries is to highlight the intensity with which these days were lived I cannot get my hand around why this could not be illustrated with far fewer excerpts from his entries from 1993. I can't shake the feeling off that Fry didn't really put as much heart into this book, as much interest, as in earlier ones. Why did he use 60 pages to tell us what had happened in earlier books? Why over 100 pages on diary entries? That is hardly "new material" and his entries, to me, became quite tedious quite quickly since everything seemed to be on repeat: parties, famous people, voiceovers for commercials, writing and a line of coke to sign the day off. I do hope that the fourth memoir will prove to be more heartfelt. I would appreciate if he focused more on his own thoughts, motivations and so on, to the extent he feels comfortable. I think it would make for a more moving read - I think that is what made Moab one of the best autobiographies - well books - I've ever read. I still love Stephen Fry's writing and I went to one of his recent performances where he spoke about the book (which was great), but there is no other way of saying it than that this book, in my mind, is a disappointment and I just hope that Fry will approach his next memoir from a different angle. In the end, although it hovers between 2-2.5 stars, it won't stop me from buying his next book, since I know he can craft a memoir like Moab is My Washpot. I do hope he will use this talent to its full power in the fourth one. If it will be yet another More Fool Me, I think he should seriously consider the point of him writing them. Fry needs to put in more material which people can relate to next time. It is not that I necessarily have to have gone through what is written on the page, but that there is at least some focus on human response, on emotions, for me to find it interesting. When I read Moab is My Washpot, I didn't necessarily need to know how it is to grow up in a boarding school in England - but it did have other interesting emotional descriptions that lent it authenticity and a reason why you can actually emphasise with his very human responses. As someone pointed out, More Fool me is very descriptive and little reflective. To me, it was just of shallow accounts of celebrity encounters which I personally don't care much for.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Andrea Bak

    Being a huge fan of the wondrous mister Fry it saddens me to find this book mediocre. During the first third Fry hastens through the contents of Moab and the Chronicles (both outstanding autobiographies), constantly apologising for the repetition and urging old readers to take a walk etc. But of course I didn’t. I sat through it all waiting patiently and expectantly for the story to go on where the Chronicles left us: with Fry about to snort his first line of coke. I had hoped for an honest and Being a huge fan of the wondrous mister Fry it saddens me to find this book mediocre. During the first third Fry hastens through the contents of Moab and the Chronicles (both outstanding autobiographies), constantly apologising for the repetition and urging old readers to take a walk etc. But of course I didn’t. I sat through it all waiting patiently and expectantly for the story to go on where the Chronicles left us: with Fry about to snort his first line of coke. I had hoped for an honest and wise account of drug abuse, the mindset of the addict, and above all I was looking forward to reading the story of how he stopped using. There is none of that. The last two thirds are amusing but also somewhat tiring diary entries from the time Fry finished The Hippopotamus and took drugs all over London, including The House of Commons and several other places – alone or with famous buddies, named and unnamed. Fry seems worried that the accounts of his escapades will be shocking for the readers. They aren’t. What is shocking though is that the editor let this sloppy manuscript pass as a book. I can’t begin to imagine how sure of yourself and your abilities you have to be to be Stephen Fry’s editor, but it would have suited the book to be properly finished and the diary entries to be rewritten and edited by the author himself. Dear Stephen, I love you to bits, but you need a stricter editor – or start listening to the one you have. I know what you are capable of, and it suits you poorly to be a sloppy writer.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Stuart

    Very disappointed with this. The first 67 pages are a review of the previous two autobiographies 'Moab' and 'Fry Chronicles'. The middle section has a few good anecdotes, and the last section is a long and rather uninteresting diary he wrote in 1993 detailing the dinners, engagements and encounters he had that seems unfocused and largely free of the great man's customary wit. What's more, the point at which the quoting of the diary stops is rather arbitrary -as if the requisite number of words h Very disappointed with this. The first 67 pages are a review of the previous two autobiographies 'Moab' and 'Fry Chronicles'. The middle section has a few good anecdotes, and the last section is a long and rather uninteresting diary he wrote in 1993 detailing the dinners, engagements and encounters he had that seems unfocused and largely free of the great man's customary wit. What's more, the point at which the quoting of the diary stops is rather arbitrary -as if the requisite number of words had been reached in his word-count. The whole thing feels half-baked and cobbled together. I also felt that the warnings and prohibitions against drug-taking were disingenuous when contrasted with his statements about being in favour of drug legalisation and the almost jovial anecdotes concerning drug taking and his enjoyment of the same. While i was reading this i couldn't get the thought out of my mind that here is a celebrity who is using revelations of bad-boy behaviour simply to sell copies, and all the hand-wringing and 'more fool me' sentiments have been added to deflect accusations of promoting that behaviour. As a fan of Stephen Fry I am greatly saddened to say i found this work to feel a bit amateurish, tedious and somewhat 'fake'.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Robert

    I liked it in spite of myself. I accused the last book, The Fry Chronicles, of being padded out and - although Stephen goes through the motions of being mortified by having already authored a third volume of memoirs - this is really no different. Given this habit of doling out progressively less of his life with each edition, we'll be comfortably into double figures by the time Stephen reaches his senescence. The padding in this case comes in the form of the first 20% being a notional glossary o I liked it in spite of myself. I accused the last book, The Fry Chronicles, of being padded out and - although Stephen goes through the motions of being mortified by having already authored a third volume of memoirs - this is really no different. Given this habit of doling out progressively less of his life with each edition, we'll be comfortably into double figures by the time Stephen reaches his senescence. The padding in this case comes in the form of the first 20% being a notional glossary of the first two books (to which I ask, would I really have picked up the third if I hadn't already read the first two?) and the last third, at least, being verbatim extracts from his diary, with only the names changed to protect the guilty. The occasional moment of insight notwithstanding - for instance his prediction of global fame for his colleague Hugh Laurie if only someone would write the right role for him some 11 years ahead of 'House' - this can be pretty thin gruel, and as other reviewers have noted it's not without repetition. The book's subtitle could certainly be "The Cocaine Years". But, but, but, I *did* enjoy it. It only occupied me for three days, but there was a certain vicarious thrill in getting the inside skinny - especially from so intimate a medium as a diary (though the cynic in me thinks that these are too well-written not to have been composed with one eye on their eventual publication) on the years of a person's life that, while they're obviously somewhat ashamed of them not merely retrospectively but apparently also at the time, were probably quite a lot of fun.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Alex is The Romance Fox

    I like Stephen Fry and love watching his BBC Q & I show. I like his humour and I find him really likeable. I haven't read any of his books but a friend of mine gave me a copy of this memoir so why not!! I have to admit that I struggled to finish it. It dragged on and on a bit and there were some funny parts but nothing spectacular. Rather watch his TV show!!!! I like Stephen Fry and love watching his BBC Q & I show. I like his humour and I find him really likeable. I haven't read any of his books but a friend of mine gave me a copy of this memoir so why not!! I have to admit that I struggled to finish it. It dragged on and on a bit and there were some funny parts but nothing spectacular. Rather watch his TV show!!!!

  16. 5 out of 5

    Heather

    Breaking your autobiography into pieces beyond one book is indulgent; Fry will be the first to admit that, and More Fool Me marks the third installment on an ongoing series of sorts, through the late eights and early nineties. While a large portion at the beginning is dedicated to recapping his previous two volumes in detail (not necessarily a bad thing here, as the third installment is where I jumped into the written story), it moves on to present the mere facts of his cocaine use without real r Breaking your autobiography into pieces beyond one book is indulgent; Fry will be the first to admit that, and More Fool Me marks the third installment on an ongoing series of sorts, through the late eights and early nineties. While a large portion at the beginning is dedicated to recapping his previous two volumes in detail (not necessarily a bad thing here, as the third installment is where I jumped into the written story), it moves on to present the mere facts of his cocaine use without real reprimand or glorification; as he said live - this is not for him to use it as a tale to draw morals of, but to present the facts and let the reader judge. And it does have some fun stories, though those who got the book from his live show will have heard some of the best verbatim already. There is some interest to be found in his encounters with Blur and Oasis (delightfully not having the foggiest clue who they were at first), but there's definitely a ceiling of enjoyment in reading about celeb lunches and lavish evenings. It's told with Fry's characteristic eloquence and bumbling in equal measure - he can make the most mundane stories a little more interesting with a succinct or odd turn of phrase, he can also raise a smile in his footnotes on diary entries spawning unnecessary exclamation marks (No!!!). The problem is it does little more than make you smile from time to time. It is interesting, but even without the first two installments to raise the expectation, this was just okay. Stephen's wit is there, some great stories are nestled in these pages, some darker ones too, but it was a little underwhelming, even though it pains me greatly to admit it.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Benjamin Pearson

    First I would like to start this review by revealing that I have listened to the audiobooks for all of Frys autobiographies including this one. I believe it is probably a waste of the mans great voice to actually read it. Additionally I dont think there is a person on the planet who has listened to his previous memoir "the fry chronicals" more times then I have, I found it so engaging and it really spoke to me for some reason. So really, to summarise my review I would like to say 60% of the book First I would like to start this review by revealing that I have listened to the audiobooks for all of Frys autobiographies including this one. I believe it is probably a waste of the mans great voice to actually read it. Additionally I dont think there is a person on the planet who has listened to his previous memoir "the fry chronicals" more times then I have, I found it so engaging and it really spoke to me for some reason. So really, to summarise my review I would like to say 60% of the book is great and the other 40% has basically proved me wrong when I believed I could listen to him talk about anything.. Even though he goes over the fry chronicals, he includes basically "bonus material" little snipits thats really make it interesting to go over again. I also found his detailed explanation of the 80s drug binge to be incredibly entertaining and interesting. I like the way he includes these little stories about people or his experiences, they are absolutely hilarious. What I didnt like and skipped most of was his diary entries from 1993, I found them to be incredibly self indulgent and mundain. The details about spending days in a resort, getting massages and playing golf were like those vacation pictures from relatives. All in all I will listen to to the first half again probably a few times, however I will be skipping the second for sure... Unless I need to wake up early the next day and am struggling to get sleep.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Sally

    I am a huge fan of Stephen Fry and his works, so I feel awful for giving this a one star review but I honestly do not feel that this book deserves more than that. Stephen Fry has such proficiency with language and narrative, yet I feel this autobiography was the antithesis of that. The book can I thing be summarized into a couple of sections. Part 1 = repetition of the first 2 biographies. Part 2 = somewhat interesting section but with a focus on his cocaine addiction. whilst interesting, this w I am a huge fan of Stephen Fry and his works, so I feel awful for giving this a one star review but I honestly do not feel that this book deserves more than that. Stephen Fry has such proficiency with language and narrative, yet I feel this autobiography was the antithesis of that. The book can I thing be summarized into a couple of sections. Part 1 = repetition of the first 2 biographies. Part 2 = somewhat interesting section but with a focus on his cocaine addiction. whilst interesting, this was also the period where he and Hugh Laurie had most of their television successes and I would've really loved to learn more about that aspect of his life. Part 3 = diary entries from the 1990s, which are so boring I really could not finish them.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Mary

    I agree with other reviews I've read here. This feels like a bit of a lazy assemblage of words that probably didn't take very long. It was interesting enough (I'm nosy - I enjoy reading about the minutiae of someone's life) but there was no real substance or point to it. I hope the next volume of memoirs finally gets down to something real and honest. I agree with other reviews I've read here. This feels like a bit of a lazy assemblage of words that probably didn't take very long. It was interesting enough (I'm nosy - I enjoy reading about the minutiae of someone's life) but there was no real substance or point to it. I hope the next volume of memoirs finally gets down to something real and honest.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Juta

    If Stephen Fry rewrote the phone directory, I'd enjoy reading it. Sadly, much of this book was that interesting. But I enjoyed it. I loved his first two books of memoir, which made this all the more disappointing. And I feel terrible admitting it, as I'm irrationally anxious that he'll read this and be hurt. No-one wants a hurt Stephen Fry in the world. That's just too sad a prospect. Large chunks of this needed editing out. And more needed to be said about how he felt at so many of the times disc If Stephen Fry rewrote the phone directory, I'd enjoy reading it. Sadly, much of this book was that interesting. But I enjoyed it. I loved his first two books of memoir, which made this all the more disappointing. And I feel terrible admitting it, as I'm irrationally anxious that he'll read this and be hurt. No-one wants a hurt Stephen Fry in the world. That's just too sad a prospect. Large chunks of this needed editing out. And more needed to be said about how he felt at so many of the times discussed. Stephen never shied away from discussing his emotions in earlier memoirs, yet large tracts of this book are dull lists of people he ate with. I'm still looking forward to the next chapter, which is surely coming now that our interest, or mine at least, has been piqued as to his decision to drop cocaine from his life and how that went down. I'm also hoping for some tales from both Last Chance To See tours. I hope he'll be back on form by then.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Barry

    With as much humour as he tried to explain/excuse it, most of this book is made up of a rehashing of the previous autobiographies followed by often-tedious verbatim diary entries. I'm not shocked by his drug use in the slightest, just not interested in which BBC executives and luvvies he had lunch with two than two decades ago. With as much humour as he tried to explain/excuse it, most of this book is made up of a rehashing of the previous autobiographies followed by often-tedious verbatim diary entries. I'm not shocked by his drug use in the slightest, just not interested in which BBC executives and luvvies he had lunch with two than two decades ago.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Wendy

    I'm not...terribly fond of this style of 'memoir.' That's why I tend more toward traditional autobiographies, which the previous two memoirs by Mr Fry were more in the style of. This was one of those that seems, mostly, to be 'Random Thoughts Streaming Through My Head Today Would You Like to Hear Them?' I've never been fond of stream-of-consciousness novels, and the same holds true of memoirs. It's one thing to feel as though you're sitting down with the person and having a conversation, and ano I'm not...terribly fond of this style of 'memoir.' That's why I tend more toward traditional autobiographies, which the previous two memoirs by Mr Fry were more in the style of. This was one of those that seems, mostly, to be 'Random Thoughts Streaming Through My Head Today Would You Like to Hear Them?' I've never been fond of stream-of-consciousness novels, and the same holds true of memoirs. It's one thing to feel as though you're sitting down with the person and having a conversation, and another to feel as though you're in their brain, listening to their unfiltered thoughts. That said, I liked a lot of the first few chapters. I could have done without the history of cocaine--I am aware of what it is, don't want to know anymore about it, and a brief description of its effects on him personally would have sufficed quite nicely, rather than a whole chapter about cocaine, how it came to be, and everything anyone's ever said about it. But other than that, the first few chapters had amusing, insightful bits in them, as always with Mr Fry. I'm not fond of epistolary novels, either, and apparently this is equally true of nonfiction which includes diary entries, which take up a large chunk of the book. I handled about ten of them before I started getting restless. That said, the diary entries are really the only glimpse of his life during that period that you will get, as, despite the book's length, he actually manages to share very little. A few anecdotes here and there. Tip for all would-be memoirists: If you're too afraid of upsetting someone to actually write down your memories, then you should not write a memoir. Usually, when I finish a Stephen Fry book, whether fiction or non, I'm left with the pleasant, satisfied glow of having just finished a good meal. This time, I'm left feeling a bit disgruntled. I don't want to say that it was a waste of my time, because that implies an anger and resentment that I don't really feel. It's simply that it wasn't to the standard of his previous writings. It was mostly...well, to use the word that others keep using, boring. I suppose that's to be expected when you're reading about someone else during a period of their life when all they seemed to do was party, do drugs, and work--apparently, according to the masses, fun to do (I would not know, on the first two counts)--less fun to read about. I suppose read it, if you'd like, just be aware that it's not nearly as bright as his previous memoirs. Go in with low expectations and you might enjoy it more. As for me, I won't be getting rid of it, but I can't really see myself revisiting it, either, save possibly for reference, as I don't have a good memory for quotations and dates.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Pavol Hardos

    It would be bootless to deny the wit and wisdom of even the more off-the-cuff remarks SF can make. And what could save a weary, world-traveling poppet stranded at an airport better than to bask in the mellifluous voice of Stephen Fry in their head as he gently cavorts, cajoles, and coaxes one down his memory lane? Still though, once he disposes of the surprising (Fry was a coke fiend!? oh my! 15 years!?), there is a sense of energy deflating, somehow, as we hear anecdotes about the P.o.W. and wh It would be bootless to deny the wit and wisdom of even the more off-the-cuff remarks SF can make. And what could save a weary, world-traveling poppet stranded at an airport better than to bask in the mellifluous voice of Stephen Fry in their head as he gently cavorts, cajoles, and coaxes one down his memory lane? Still though, once he disposes of the surprising (Fry was a coke fiend!? oh my! 15 years!?), there is a sense of energy deflating, somehow, as we hear anecdotes about the P.o.W. and what a super fellow in excellent form this bint or that cove was at that social function. Everybody is marvelous all the time, oh, poo, here I go again doing another gram of the devil's dandruff! My word and then the decision to include a segment of couple of months worth of mostly unedited diary entries from 1993, though representative they were of what he described before, leaves you scratching your head as you power through them (one third of the book!), was this not in the least slightly lazy? And, dare I say it, boring? And what happened afterwards? We never get beyond mid-90s. Is a fourth volume of memoirs in the offing? Do we need it? Why couldn't more time have been covered here?

  24. 5 out of 5

    Riikka

    It took me almost exactly one year to finish this book. One bloody long year. I did read other books in between, mind you, but this book kept nagging on me so I just kept coming back to it and dropping it several times over the year. The trouble I had with this third part of Fry's memoirs was that it just didn't have the nice flow the two previous books had. Even tough I get why he did go through this time subject by subject, I personally did prefer the more chronological approach the previous b It took me almost exactly one year to finish this book. One bloody long year. I did read other books in between, mind you, but this book kept nagging on me so I just kept coming back to it and dropping it several times over the year. The trouble I had with this third part of Fry's memoirs was that it just didn't have the nice flow the two previous books had. Even tough I get why he did go through this time subject by subject, I personally did prefer the more chronological approach the previous books had. As a testament to this, I found the last part of the book, Fry's diary entries from 1993 to be the funnest part to read. On the other hand Fry is still a pretty damn good writer and thus, even tough I kept dropping the book for other books, I never really felt like giving up completely with it. And that brings us to the staggering reading time of 1 year and 9 days. Here's hoping for a better 4th part of the memoir series!

  25. 5 out of 5

    Yara (The Narratologist)

    When I was a young girl (she said, at the ripe age of 26), Stephen Fry was my hero. He was intelligent, funny, eloquent, charming, talented, well-travelled, well-connected, and well-read – everything I wanted to be. Like a lot of people, I put him up on a pedestal and idolised him. His first memoir, Moab Is My Washpot, brought him back down to earth for me. In this book, he talked about his fears and insecurities, and it helped me see him for what he truly was: just a man. He wrote about his fir When I was a young girl (she said, at the ripe age of 26), Stephen Fry was my hero. He was intelligent, funny, eloquent, charming, talented, well-travelled, well-connected, and well-read – everything I wanted to be. Like a lot of people, I put him up on a pedestal and idolised him. His first memoir, Moab Is My Washpot, brought him back down to earth for me. In this book, he talked about his fears and insecurities, and it helped me see him for what he truly was: just a man. He wrote about his first love, feeling like an outsider, his criminal record, and his eventual suicide attempt in a way that felt deeply, deeply personal and honest. It took the halo away for good, but if anything, I liked him even more now that he was vulnerable and flawed. Even Stephen “Britain’s National Treasure” Fry is wrecked by insecurities. Read More

  26. 4 out of 5

    LiLi

    2.5 - Mr Fry is likeable and intelligent, and I would try another of his books. However, when he veers off onto a tangent for hours reciting his personal diary, I have to wonder if he just kind of gave up writing this book. Some of the entries are fairly insufferable. I've read that his other books are better; so, maybe I'll try those. 2.5 - Mr Fry is likeable and intelligent, and I would try another of his books. However, when he veers off onto a tangent for hours reciting his personal diary, I have to wonder if he just kind of gave up writing this book. Some of the entries are fairly insufferable. I've read that his other books are better; so, maybe I'll try those.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Kirsten Burnett

    I listened to the audiobook, read by Stephen himself and it was a pleasure. Yes, he was a bit of a tit for some of the period covered, but he's only human and I love him anyway. I'll miss hearing him and his wonderful word play on my car journeys. I listened to the audiobook, read by Stephen himself and it was a pleasure. Yes, he was a bit of a tit for some of the period covered, but he's only human and I love him anyway. I'll miss hearing him and his wonderful word play on my car journeys.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Aoife

    Too much name dropping and very repetitive. The first half however was enjoyable.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Zuzka Jakubkova

    Stephen Fry did a lot of blow.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Nick Davies

    At his best, as was the case often in the preceding two autobiographies by Fry, the author is witty and frank. Here, however, this is less evident - and Fry's humour and intelligence is lost in reams of slightly tedious name-dropping and immersement of 80s/90s luvvie excess. I just prefer childhood and adolescent memoirs, as adult biography seems to me to say a lot less about the subject (just about what they have done). The final quarter of this book was merely unedited diary extracts from 1993 At his best, as was the case often in the preceding two autobiographies by Fry, the author is witty and frank. Here, however, this is less evident - and Fry's humour and intelligence is lost in reams of slightly tedious name-dropping and immersement of 80s/90s luvvie excess. I just prefer childhood and adolescent memoirs, as adult biography seems to me to say a lot less about the subject (just about what they have done). The final quarter of this book was merely unedited diary extracts from 1993, and felt to me like filler of little value.

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