3 November 2014

Review of Funny Bones by Stuart Pedlar

Many thanks to Musical Director Stuart Pedlar for this review.

Funny Bones is not just, as it title suggests, an entertaining and amusing autobiography, but an informative one as well. What makes it so readable is the well balanced mixture of personal narrative with background information relating to the best of English comedy during the sixties and seventies both in theatre and television. Anecdotes there are aplenty, but these never swamp the general sweep of the book, which recalls with fond nostalgia a different age from the one we now live in, yet nonetheless one still relevant to those of us interested in the likes of Davies, let alone the myriad of other fine entertainers of the time such as Morecambe and Wise et al.

The book is a page turner not through any forced sensationalism (the fact that much of the story is one we can sympathise with helps enormously) but rather in the method it sets up following events in such a way that what happens next is not only interesting but also entertaining. In short, the book breathes, it has space, and unlike most biographies these days, which are all dates, names, anecdotes and the inevitable ‘then I did next’, this one captures more of the essence of the period and thus puts Davies into a well-earned perspective.

 Indeed, the book is a real treat, as it not only entertains enormously, but also because it is packed with snippets and information that conjure up the life and loves of one of our greatest comics, a man whose talent and genius for comedy are celebrated to the full thanks to this well written biography.

                                                                          Stuart Pedlar

Other reviews: 

John Fisher here.
Kevin Cann here.
Steve Bennett (Chortle) here

Buy Freddie Davies's autobiography Funny Bones from amazon (paperback) or direct from Scratching Shed Publishing (paperback or limited edition hardback). You can read an extract here.