Sunday, July 8, 2012

This Is Your Life, John O’Farrell 2002

Now that I’m back into regular blog mode, I want to continue with my book reviews. Well, it’s more like starting them, since I haven’t actually done one yet! I mentioned in a post on April 8 that I was starting a book of Pirate stories I bought at Dollar Tree. Well, not only did I forget I was blogging, I didn’t finish the book. I lost it!

I’ve read a few books since then, and I will likely be posting about them sometime this week. That makes this my first official book review. And it’s not a positive one.

This Is Your Life is a novel written by John O’Farrell, a satirical author, broadcaster, and comedy scriptwriter from England. It follows a man named Jimmy Conway thru a year of his life (occasionally sharing letters he had written to himself as a teenager about not letting his fame get to him). When the novel opens, he works part time as an English language teacher, and lives in a small town on the shore. He doesn't make much money, and is unhappy with his life. Not long after, he begins to pretend he’s a famous comic in order to get “celebrity treatment,” after a local comedian dies and they mistake Jimmy as an old friend of his.

It’s a creative way of looking at how celebrity obsessed our societies have become, and I give him props for that. It was just so drawn out! There were several scenes that could have been left out, and not only would the story have been told, it would have been more interesting to read!

Perhaps it’s the subtle differences in English humour that made the book seem long; I had a hard time staying focused. Also, the chapters were quite long, so it wasn’t easy to find a good stopping point. (I typically read at night during the school year.) Instead of a 313 page novel, it would have made a great short story!

1 comment:

  1. I have never read that book but I dont like chapters to be too long. I always need a break of some sort! :)