Alan Bennett

Alan Bennett

Yorkshire playwright, diarist and raconteur who openly detests his oft-applied sobriquet of "national treasure"...

Born in 1934, the son of a Leeds butcher, Alan Bennett gained a scholarship to Oxford and prepared himself for a career as a medieval historian. However, Bennett soon discovered that he had thespian tendencies and became increasingly active in local stage productions and revues. Bennett achieved fame and notoriety in 1960 when he appeared in Beyond the Fringe with Peter Cook, Dudley Moore and Jonathan Miller. Throughout the 1960s Bennett continued to write for (and occasionally appear in) satirical sketch-based shows, but his real passion was drama and during the 1970s he made a name for himself as a playwright.

Bennett's wistful, melancholy style and fine ear for the nuances of Northern, working-class speech have transformed him from an enfant terrible into a national treasure ( a sobriquet he detests) and when he published his diaries in the mid-nineties, they topped the bestseller lists. He followed up with another set of diaries in 2005, which proved equally popular, and in Autumn 2006, a successful adaptation of his play, The History Boys, was released as a film. Bennett's work also adapts exceptionally well to the audiobook format, and he is perhaps the single most successful British writer and performer in that format.

Fact file

Name: Alan Bennett

Date of birth: 1934

Place of birth: Leeds

Current Home: Camden, London

Education: St Catherine's College, Oxford

Similar Authors: Bernard MacLaverty, Alan Sillitoe, Melvyn Bragg

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The Uncommon Reader

The Uncommon Reader

(Hardback)

'Oh Norman,' said the Queen, 'the prime minister doesn't seem to have read any Hardy. Perhaps you could find him one of our old paperbacks on his way out.' Had the dogs not taken exception to the strange van parked in the...
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Untold Stories

Untold Stories (Paperback)

by Alan Bennett

Format: Paperback 672 pages
Published: 07/09/2006
Publisher: Faber & Faber

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Reviews (4)

3 out of 5

£9.99

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The Uncommon Reader

The Uncommon Reader (Hardback)

by Alan Bennett

Format: Hardback 128 pages
Published: 06/09/2007
Publisher: Profile Books Ltd

Not available online. Check availability in branch

Reviews (13)

4 out of 5

'Oh Norman,' said the Queen, 'the prime minister doesn't seem to have read any Hardy. Perhaps you could find him one of our old... Read more


The History Boys

The History Boys (Audio CD)

by Alan Bennett

Format: Audio CD
Published: 03/04/2006
Publisher: BBC Audiobooks Ltd

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Reviews (2)

4 out of 5

Alan Bennett's new, award-winning play as heard on BBC Radio 3 features the National Theatre cast. After a sell-out national tour and an... Read more

£13.25

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Four Stories

Four Stories (Paperback)

by Alan Bennett

Format: Paperback 240 pages
Published: 07/09/2006
Publisher: Profile Books Ltd

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Father! Father! Burning Bright, the savage satire on a dying man's family reaction as he still asserts control over them from the hospital bed. ... Read more

RRP £8.99

£6.79

You save: £2.20

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Writing Home

Writing Home (Paperback)

by Alan Bennett

Format: Paperback 656 pages
Published: 07/09/2006
Publisher: Faber & Faber Non-Fiction

10+ in stock

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This book brings together Alan Bennett's diaries for 1980-1995, with reminiscences and reviews, the diary he kept during the production of his... Read more

RRP £10.99

£8.29

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The History Boys

The History Boys (Paperback)

by Alan Bennett

Format: Paperback 144 pages
Published: 17/06/2004
Publisher: Faber & Faber Plays

10+ in stock

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Reviews (2)

5 out of 5

An unruly bunch of bright, funny sixth-form boys in pursuit of sex, sport and a place at university. A maverick English teacher at odds with the... Read more

RRP £9.99

£7.49

You save: £2.50

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Alan Bennett, Untold Stories: Written on the Body Pt. 3

Alan Bennett, Untold Stories: Written on the Body Pt. 3 (Audio CD)

by Alan Bennett

Format: Audio CD
Published: 04/09/2006
Publisher: BBC Audiobooks Ltd

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Alan Bennett reads five more extracts from "Untold Stories", his major collection of new writings. "Untold Stories", Alan... Read more

£13.25

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The Lady in the Van (Paperback)

by Alan Bennett

Format: Paperback 96 pages
Published: 18/03/1999
Publisher: Profile Books Ltd

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Alan Bennett is the author of "Writing Home", "The Madness of George III", "Talking Heads", "The Clothes They... Read more

£4.99

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Telling Tales

Telling Tales (Paperback)

by Alan Bennett

Format: Paperback 95 pages
Published: 06/09/2001
Publisher: BBC Books

Publication abandoned

Ten childhood snapshots from the master of the monologue. Alan Bennett recalls his childhood in a sequence of talks that are funny, touching and... Read more

 


The History Boys

The History Boys (Hardback)

by Alan Bennett

Format: Hardback 144 pages
Published: 05/10/2006
Publisher: Faber & Faber

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An unruly bunch of bright, funny sixth-form boys in pursuit of sex, sport and a place at university. A maverick English teacher at odds with the... Read more

£12.99

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The Complete "Talking Heads"

The Complete "Talking Heads" (Paperback)

by Alan Bennett

Format: Paperback 208 pages
Published: 06/09/2001
Publisher: BBC Books

Not available online. Check availability in branch

The contains the first series of six Talking Heads monologues, written for BBC television in 1987, as well as the second series written in 1998.... Read more