Keeping On Keeping On (Hardback)Alan Bennett (author)
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I seem to have banged on this year rather more than usual. I make no apology for that, nor am I nervous that it will it make a jot of difference. I shall still be thought to be kindly, cosy and essentially harmless. I am in the pigeon-hole marked 'no threat' and did I stab Judi Dench with a pitchfork I should still be a teddy bear.
Encounter Alan Bennett as he is best experienced, in his own words.
We at Waterstones have been listening to the distinctive, wry and understated warmth of Alan Bennett’s voice since his early years on radio. From his own readings of his diaries to his short fiction, bittersweet and unfailingly funny, including Father! Father! Burning Bright and the miniature masterpiece of storytelling The Clothes They Stood Up In.
Alan Bennett's third collection of prose, Keeping On Keeping On, follows in the footsteps of the phenomenally successful Writing Home and Untold Stories, each published ten years apart. This latest collection contains Bennett's peerless diaries 2005 to 2015, reflecting on a decade that saw four premieres at the National Theatre (The Habit of Art, People, Hymn and Cocktail Sticks), a West End double-bill transfer, and the films of The History Boys and The Lady in the Van.
There's a provocative sermon on private education given before the University at King's College Chapel, Cambridge, and 'Baffled at a Bookcase' offers a passionate defence of the public library. The book also includes 'Denmark Hill', a darkly comic radio play set in suburban south London, as well as Bennett's reflections on a quarter of a century's collaboration with Nicholas Hytner.
This is an engaging, humane, sharp, funny and unforgettable record of life according to the inimitable Alan Bennett.
‘Marvellously unguarded… every piece here conveys the sense of an idiosyncratic and cussed mind, alive and open to the world.’ – The Guardian
Publisher: Profile Books Ltd
Number of pages: 736
Weight: 1257 g
Dimensions: 240 x 162 x 61 mm
Is able to make the world dance with a single word ... On every page there is a phrase to make you smile, poetry disguised as comedy. -- Craig Brown * Mail on Sunday *
Few diarists could offer such a consistently funny and touching authorial voice as Bennett. Long may he keep on keeping on. -- Ben Lawrence * Daily Telegraph *
Wry and eloquent ... screamingly funny... his sentences are always beautiful. -- Miranda Sawyer * Observer *
There is no other writer, certainly none from any other era or nation, quite like Alan Bennett, and having this much more of his work is an uncovenanted blessing. -- David Sexton * Evening Standard *
It is not only Bennett's claws that are sharp. So are his eyes ... confirms his reputation as one of the sharpest and funniest writers in the English language. -- Robert Douglas-Fairhurst * Spectator *
There is not a dull or uninteresting page here ... teddy bear he may be but he has a tiger's teeth. * The Herald *
An endlessly rewarding read by a man for all seasons and one who occupies a unique place in our culture and affections. -- Liz Thomson * The Arts Desk *
A fascinating exercise in modern history ... a superb collection, written from the unique perspective of an octogenarian at the top of his stylistic game, with a keen eye towards the past we have lost and the future we may yet inhabit. * Daily Express *
This latest anthology of diaries and essays is a beautiful, humane and honest collection of reflections. * Rachel Reeves *
Every piece here conveys the sense of an idiosyncratic and cussed mind, alive and open to the world -- Joe Moran * Guardian *
The literary equivalent of a warm cup of Horlicks spiked lavishly with whisky. * Metro, Books of the Year *
Fire lit. Hot, thick toast. Coffee. Reading the inimitable Mr Bennett. Happiness. -- Nigel Slater
[A] lavish miscellany ... appreciative, nostalgic and also hugely funny. * Prospect *
PRAISE FOR ALAN BENNETT: 'Alan Bennett, with his combination of pitiless observation and gentle understatement, is perhaps the best-loved of English writers alive today * Sunday Telegraph *
Intelligent, educated, engaging, humane, self-aware, cantankerous and irresistibly funny -- John Carey * Sunday Times *
Not only my book of the year, it is my book of the decade -- Nigel Slater on UNTOLD STORIES
Alan Bennett's work, which stands as one of the major achievements across several genres in the late twentieth and early twenty-first centuries, demands the very best of us: not our praise but our attention. -- Ian Samson * TLS *