How Not to Grow Up: A Coming of Age Memoir. Sort of. by Richard Herring
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
As the comedian Richard Herring approached his fortieth birthday he found himself behaving in ways that were increasingly childish. His life was a non-stop round of gigging, drinking, getting up late and then spending most of the day sitting around in his pants eating sweets and playing video games. His search for a relationship was becoming increasingly desperate, alternating between hopeless romanticism and a series of ill-advised temporary flings. He didn't even know if he really wanted a long term relationship when he couldn't even commit to a bag for life from the supermarket. The only people that seemed to understand him on his level were small children, perhaps recognising that he was a child like them rather than an adult.
Richard Herring has chronicled a pivotal year in his life in startling and sometimes confessional detail. He slowly starts to understand his urge to self destruct and gains an insight into how to strike a balance between adult responsibilities and the need to maintain a childlike view of the absurdities of life. Without giving too much away, he does turn out to be a bit of an old softy in the end (and not just around the middle from a diet of fried chicken and flumps).
If you have listened to the hundred and something podcasts that he has produced over the last two years, or read any of his daily blogs, then this book is an essential 'directors commentary' to accompany everything else. If you are not a die hard fan, then this might just turn you into one.
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