twitter join us on facebook
Search our site
Out of the Blue by Sophie Cameron Read the opening extract of the brand new Sophie Cameron book before its publication on 22/03/2018

A Certain Age by Lynne Truss


A Certain Age by Lynne Truss

From the bestselling author of `Eats Shoots & Leaves', a wonderfully funny collection of twelve monologues. In the tradition of Alan Bennett's `Talking Heads' come Lynne Truss's twelve bittersweet tales about love, romance, friendship and family. Her six men and six women each have very different stories to tell, ranging from the wife who feels better when her husband disappears to the pedant who undergoes a TV makeover and the swimmer who can't escape the shadow of her sister...but all are funny, touching and as beautifully observed as would be expected from the bestselling author. Whether describing fathers and daughters, married men, cat-lovers or `other women', she is always brilliantly perceptive.


`Dazzling...sad, funny and, of course, exquisitely written; superb; finely crafted.
Daily Mail

'Deliciously rich in plot twists and character surprises- sharpobservation is happily married to a bracing sense of the ridiculous.'
Daily Telegraph

'Top-quality writing.'
Sunday Times

'Beautifully observed... Truss is simply a huge talent.'

About the Author

Lynne Truss

Lynne Truss is one of Britain’s top comic writers and is the author of the number one bestseller Eats, Shoots & Leaves. It has sold over three million copies worldwide and won the British Book of the Year award in 2004. She has also written four comic books, Going Loco, Making the Cat Laugh, Tennyson’s Gift and With One Lousy Free Packet of Seed, all available from Profile Books. She is also a regular presenter on Radio 4 and a guest presenter for many other programmes. She lives in Brighton.

Below is a Q & A with this author.

Do you have a favourite punctuation mark?

I do! When I was writing Eats, Shoots & Leaves, I remember saying that this was going to be a new experience for me, because usually (when I was writing plays or novels) I would fall in love with one of the characters. “No chance of that this time,” I said. But in fact I fell in love with the colon. I realised how manly it was. However, I think you have to be a very strange or special person to understand what I mean by that.

What is the most embarrassing mistake you have ever made?

It’s not very good, I’m afraid. I was about 22, and at a party, talking to some parents about whether they should get some injections for their kids, and I said it was probably very important to have them intoxicated. I meant innoculated, you see. I felt like killing myself afterwards.

What is the worst mistake you have ever seen?

I don’t recall. I try to remember only the funny ones. The funniest one I know about is “RESIDENTS REFUSE TO GO IN THE BINS”.

Aside from errors in punctuation and bad manners, do you have any other pet hates?

I don’t actually hate punctuation errors: they make me sad. Meanwhile, the rudeness of the modern world (which was the subject of my last book, Talk to the Hand – it wasn’t just about manners) also makes me more suicidal than angry. However, since you ask, what I do really hate is cyclists on pavements. Or cyclists sailing across pdestrian crossings when the lights are against them. Or cyclists going the wrong way down a one-way street. I would like new laws passed so that citizens would be within their rights to push cyclists off their bikes, if discovered committing any of those outrages.

What is the furthest you have ever gone to correct someone’s punctuation?

Sorry, I don’t go out of my way at all to correct punctuation. Occasionally, if I’m feeling very larky, I will correct a sign and then add my signature underneath – sort-of like the mark of Zorro. But I actually don’t go around correcting people in a serious way, because I know it hurts their feelings.

What are you reading at the moment?

Because I’m just starting to write my first stage play, I’ve been reading a lot of plays; also books about playwriting. Alan Ayckbourn’s The Crafty Art of Playwriting is full of good advice. I’ve just read Lionel Shriver’s Double Fault (a novel about tennis players), and a new American biography of Brian Wilson of the Beach Boys. Last night, I started Julia Briggs’s book about Virginia Woolf, which looks great. Julia Briggs gave a talk about the book at the Charleston Literary Festival in May that was quite the most impressive talk I’ve ever been to.

What was your favourite childhood book?

I loved Pooh best, I think. But Lewis Carroll has had the most lasting effect on my imagination, and I often invoke the Alice books, assuming that everyone knows them off by heart, as I do. When I was about ten, I learned all the poems – “Jabberwocky”, “The Walrus and the Carpenter”, “You Are Old, Father William” – and recited them to my bored classmates. I do see Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland as one of the most important books ever written.

More books by this author
Author 'Like for Like' recommendations

Loading other formats...

Book Info

Publication date

4th February 2010


Lynne Truss

More books by Lynne Truss
Author 'Like for Like'

Author's Website


Fourth Estate Ltd an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers


208 pages


Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945)



You'll always find what you never knew you were looking for and you're always spoilt for choice.

Helen Jones

Lovereading has given me the opportunity to delve into new and exciting worlds of authors who I would never have tried before.

Glynis Elliott

The best new books on the market, reviewed honestly, to give your readers the best choices.

Julie Cook

I love the honest opinions, recommendations for every genre and every reader, wish lists and Like for Like.

Amrita Dasgupta

My horizons have been broadened by some of the books I have been lucky to review and I expect it to be no different in the future.

Daran Bellingham

Discover new authors and enjoy old favourites; oodles of literary gems to uncover at Lovereading with candid reviews from real reviewers.

Emily Wright

Its jam packed with fantastic titles, informative descriptions & fantastic reviews and has a vast array of great features & competitions.

Linda Rollins

Lovereading recommends, honestly reviews and promotes books-what more can I say?!

Rachel Bridgeman