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Jo Brand is a stand-up comic with many TV and radio shows to her name. She is married with two children and lives in South London.
Photograph © Trevor Leighton
Featured on The Book Show on Sky Arts on 31 May 2010. Jo Brand, as one of Britain's best loved comedians, has a wickedly dry sense of humour and this comes across loud and clear in her biography. Hers is a fascinating story having swapped a career as a psychiatric nurse for a more daunting career in stand-up comedy. She is a great story teller, with laugh out loud moments as she covers her formative years and the highs and lows of her career to date.
Yes, this is the renowned comedian but her background includes psychiatric nursing and she has clearly called upon her knowledge and experience in that field to produce this tale of an eccentric family in a lovely, funny and sad story. Her particular humour is most evident at the beginning when she describes the characters and setting – real laugh-out-loud stuff – and then the story takes over. Comparison: Unique but try Julian Clary (Devil in Disguise), Pauline McLynn (Missing You Already), Ben Elton.
Jo Brand as one of Britain's best loved comedians has a wickedly dry sense of humour and this comes across loud and clear in her biography. Hers is a fascinating story having swapped a career as a psychiatric nurse for a more daunting career in stand-up comedy. She is a great story teller, with laugh out loud moments as she covers her formative years and the highs and lows of her career to date.
A bit repetitive, a bit predictable, but it actually made me laugh which is always a good thing. She is, of course, the Jo Brand of ‘stand up’ fame writing about the lives of two moody teenagers from different backgrounds growing up in Hastings. There are a lot of characters which the reader gets to know very well, a fair bit of sex and drugs and lots of alcohol, the sort of book to empathise with, remembering those ghastly teenage years. It’s good.Comparison: Scarlett Thomas, David Nicholls.Similar this month: Serena Mackesy.
Hastings in the seventies is not the coolest place to be. As Rachel and Susan teeter on the brink of adolescence, they realise safety lies in numbers and the best chance of surviving their teens is by sticking together. Their friendship protects them against the trials of parents, classmates, bullies who harass them in school, soggy chips, warm beer, aspiring guitar heroes, stoned hippies, men's clubs, derivative three chord bands and emotional neediness and weediness. But when Dave, local rock-star and general bad-boy, enters their lives, they discover that sex, drugs and rockâ€™nâ€™roll arenâ€™t always everything theyâ€™ve dreamed of. And then Punk music detonates the status quo and nothing will ever be the same again. This is a wonderfully funny and poignant novel about growing up in the seventies, the brittle nature of teenage friendship and the tough twists and turns of emerging adulthood.