I love Paul, he s so acid with his humour This book is just as good as his two previous ones Brilliant could not put it down Paul is the best Paul O Grady s third volume of autobiography is tinged with a kind of autumn sadness as so many of the astonishing characters it features are no longer with us At the same time it s just as sharp, witty and packed with anecdote as either of the previous parts What sets O Grady apart from run of the mill ghosted celebrity twaddle is the he s genuinely interested in other people than himself So while there s a fine sprinkling of famous pals Cilla, Beryl, Biggins et al the stories about ordinary people, his Mum, Auntie Anne, Vera Lalley, Chrissie, Murphy and of course Our Vera, are every bit as observantly funny It s also a huge nostalgia trip if you re an 80s queen like me, and some of the people and places I knew as well as Paul did Remembering Rose Marie, a genuine case of so bad she s good amateur drag from halcyon days of the Vauxhall Tavern, an unprepossessing little Irish guy with buck teeth, who was brutally beaten to death on the one occasion he got lucky down the bars, brought a lump to my throat And just over the page I was roaring at an account of Black Cap doyenne Regina Fong s misadventures with a stolen bicycle in Amsterdam resulting in a rescue by a rubber fetishist who did unspeakable things to the fabled Last of the Romanovs on a houseboat It s a lost world which O Grady recalls with warmth and gusto, and even if you only read this to find out about how his behemoth Lily Savage came into the world, you ll get drawn into a bit of living history For the drag queens, as O Grady opines, are the much maligned bit of the gay entertainment world despite their huge popularity in our pubs and clubs, the timid London Pride didn t allow them on its main stage till 1990, out of rigid and self defeating political correctness, and then only Lily owing to her post modern tag Yet during a particularly dark and threatening period of our history Adrella, Regina, Hush, the Trollettes and most of all Lilian Maeve Veronica Savage kept us going like a wartime ENSA all of their own, making us laugh whilst simultaneously railing against the police, authorities, religious types and Thatcher, who wanted to beat and cow us into submission and silence.
There should be no sign of this juggernaut stopping despite the author s protestations that three is enough he really only scratches the surface of life in the big time in this volume, and gives tantalising hints of things that happened after and we need to know about Robbie Willliams on the Big Breakfast bed, Blankety Blank and what he really thought of Richard and Judy s wine club As Private Eye said of an earlier O Grady memoir, you start to wonder why all celebrity autobiographies can t be like this Well they could start by trying to write them themselves, Jordan, Katona and Rooney please note.
Funny and well written, which is a rare thing in a autobiography Captures London in a time gone by And who doesn t like a bit of drag I have long been a fan of Paul O Grady and have read his previous two books At My Mother s Knee The Devil Rides Out He always makes me laugh and I love his open honesty He s not afraid to say what he thinks and I admire that.
This book starts in the years just before Lily Savage came about, Paul spends his time doing drag acts in seedy pubs and clubs with his friends, this book is packed with reminiscent tales of their adventures, successes and failures With a host of characters that would fit in well with any soap opera you ll be laughing and crying throughout this book Written with all of O Grady s charm and wit this book reads just as if he was talking to you, and offers an in depth look into his world and how he got to where he is today.
This book covers a lot of years of Paul s life however I was a bit disappointed that it didn t cover the years that he did Blankety Blank on TV as that was when I really got to know Lily Savage when I was growing up In some ways this book covers some of Paul s sadder years he goes through a lot of losses and deaths but somehow still manages to remain his determined self.
I m not a mass fan of autobiographies I have to be really interested in the person and I have to say Paul O Grady s are always a joy to read He s said that he has only planned for 3 but I hope he does another one.
This book does contain material that isn t suitable for younger audiences including drugs, sex and a bit of violence.
There were comments that they found it odd that he left the book at his Mum s death but I think its timely because it was after then that he began his TV work starting with The Bill and to go through everything I think we would have been here forever I do like where he has added a little about 2012 and I am sure we will hear from Paul If I had my wish I would like to see Paul write a book containing some stories about him travelling the country as Lily Savage when he was making a real name for himself That would be hilarious If you want to read this book, go ahead but read the two previous ones first.
I have just finished reading Paul O Grady s 3rd instalment of his autobiography which has left me with mixed feelings.
I really enjoyed the stories of performing around the UK in various different acts and groups The tales are set before Lilly found her legs and won the admiration and affection of the Gay scene and the public through his TV shows I loved the tales of interactions, the put down lines and the description of the dives played It guaranteed a few looks on the tube because of the smile on my face, or when I laughed out loud I loved the path of becoming Lilly, finding the courage to go from a mime act to a live act we came to know.
The book details the devastation that was AIDS HIV during the 1980 s Detailing the heart break of losing friends, the attitude adopted through fear, ignorance and hatred that surrounded this disease It demonstrated the courage of the Gay community during this time and the courage of the drag acts like Lilly Savage, Adrella and Regina Thong Through their charity work, they raised awareness, raised money and entertained and try to keep up the spirits of the community at large.
The part of the book that left me with mixed feelings or slightly deflated, was towards the end of the book You jumped from the 1980 s to the present day and recounting trips to China Tibet, stage show and writing screen plays I know there is a lot of history in Paul s life but I would of preferred to know about his first big break into TV, the transition from Drag star to one of our popular TV personalities It ruined the flow of this section of the book and even lost some of it s charm in the telling of a story.
Overall I enjoyed the book, it is not as funny as the first book but is better than the second book.
This man is the most talented person every I have now read all 3 of his books and they are amazing This one does have a lot of sad moments but so well written.