Wednesday 27 July 2022

And Away... by Bob Mortimer | Book Review

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And Away... by Bob Mortimer
Star rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Publisher: Simon & Schuster 
Publication date: 26th May 2022

Bob Mortimer’s life was trundling along happily until suddenly in 2015 he was diagnosed with a heart condition that required immediate surgery and forced him to cancel an upcoming tour. The episode unnerved him, but forced him to reflect on his life so far. This is the framework for his hilarious and moving memoir, And Away…

Although his childhood in Middlesbrough was normal on the surface, it was tinged by the loss of his dad, and his own various misadventures (now infamous from his appearances on Would I Lie to You?), from burning down the family home to starting a short-lived punk band called Dog Dirt. As an adult, he trained as a solicitor and moved to London. Though he was doing pretty well (the South London Press once crowned him ‘The Cockroach King’ after a successful verdict), a chance encounter in a pub in the 1980s with a young comedian going by the name Vic Reeves set his life on a different track. And now, six years on, the heart condition that once threatened his career has instead led to new success on BBC2’s Gone Fishing.

This is a very easy five star read for me. 

Bob Mortimer writes about life as a young boy right up to present day including the passing of his father, his work as a solicitor, his teenage friendships, how he met Jim Moir and the subsequent comedy shows they created and starred in.

I have been a massive Bob Mortimer fan since I was probably around 6 years old. I remember growing up watching The Smell Of Reeves and Mortimer and Shooting Stars with my dad. Mulligan & O'Hare and The Stotts hold a special place in my heart.

Being a comedian, I expected this book to be very funny and it being read by Bob in the audiobook version increased the hilarity. There were a few occasions when I had to stop myself from laughing like an idiot whilst listening on my walk to work. Notably, Mortimer singing the song Suits Me Fine from his short lived punk band days (Dog Dirt is a fantastic name if you ask me) and whenever he did Donald Stott's voice. That gets me every time.

Of course, being a life story, he writes about the sadder times too such as his depression at university and his fear when his health worsened and required an operation.

I genuinely loved hearing more about his life, especially in the solicitor days and also his feelings towards Jim are very moving. Mortimer ends the books with some lovely advice he wants to pass onto his sons, two of which are my absolute favourites and I will share below.

"Always walk kerbside when with a lady."
"A home should be full of books"

Thanks Bob, I will have a cappuchoochoo. Ciao!   

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