Seasonal Suicide Notes, By Roger Lewis

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The Independent Culture

If the blurb of a book stacked in the "humor" section of a bookshop suggests the material is howlingly, side-splittingly funny, a jaded reader might be forgiven for thinking matters have been exaggerated by reviewers searching for soundbites.

As it turns out, this book, comprised of diary entries, really is that elusive thing - laugh- out-loud funny. This is partly because the biographer Roger Lewis, has perfected the art of the comic one-liner, the art of the self-deprecating one liner, and also because it bears a savage authenticity in its send-ups and ribaldry.

He angles his black-humour against "ghastly Clive James", "sad mother Julie Myerson", "blubbery" Mark Lawson, and many more, but most brutally on himself, a Welsh butcher's son turned overweight, chippy old fart from Malvern. Perhaps so, but a laugh-out-loud funny one at that.

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