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Thomas Jones: Dream On

27 June 2002
... than their dreams can. But then again, it may just be that in a past life I helped sell rhinos to the ancient Greeks. Martin Amis, whatever he may have been in a past life, is currently turning into GylesBrandreth. Blazoned across the Daily Telegraph on 13 June were pictures of the eminent novelist in sports kit that David Beckham might not be ashamed to be seen in. Pilates, we learn, has changed ...

Meaningless Legs

Frank Kermode: John Gielgud

21 June 2001
Gielgud: A Theatrical Life 1904-2000 
by Jonathan Croall.
Methuen, 579 pp., £20, November 2000, 0 413 74560 0
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John G.: The Authorised Biography of John Gielgud 
by Sheridan Morley.
Hodder, 510 pp., £20, May 2001, 0 340 36803 9
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John Gielgud: An Actor’s Life 
by Gyles Brandreth.
Sutton, 196 pp., £6.99, April 2001, 0 7509 2752 6
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... reform of the relevant law; if so, the matter must have been far from secret, and indeed it was at least alluded to in other books by writers that appeared during the actor’s lifetime, for example GylesBrandreth’s lively tribute, now republished. In any case Croall seems to have had access to plenty of material – sometimes, one feels, too much. He also had more time to write his book, since ...

Oh, Lionel!

Christopher Hitchens

3 December 1992
P.G. Wodehouse: Man and Myth 
by Barry Phelps.
Constable, 344 pp., £16.95, October 1992, 9780094716209
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... voice and I could see that, if not actually disgruntled, he was far from being gruntled’), which is drawn from The Code of the Woosters yet which Phelps sources as – gawd-’elp-us – a find by GylesBrandreth and further sources as – gawd-’elp-us again – Pelham Books. The atmosphere of a jolly buff’s reunion, complete with painful Drones impersonations and ritual bread-throwing, lies ...

Tunnel Vision

Jenny Diski: Princess Diana

2 August 2007
The Diana Chronicles 
by Tina Brown.
Century, 481 pp., £18.99, June 2007, 978 1 84605 286 6
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by Sarah Bradford.
Penguin, 443 pp., £7.99, July 2007, 978 0 14 027671 8
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... Mercedes on that close Parisian night, does she suddenly miss the cool English rain?’ Not that Brown is exclusively high-minded and lyrical, but for salacious gossip she has to rely on the likes of GylesBrandreth, whom she quotes quoting Barbara Cartland on the failure of the royal marriage: ‘Of course, you know where it all went wrong. She wouldn’t do oral sex.’ Brown has her own views. Diana ...

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