The new novel from David Baddiel, comedian, columnist and author of the critically-praised The Secret Purposes.
As Eli Gold, a famous old writer lies dying in a hospital in New York, his family gather around his bed. His first wife Violet is too old to travel from London but Harvey, their son, who has never emerged from the shadow of his overpowering father, makes the journey. And there is Colette, a six-year old daughter from a second marriage, struggling to make sense of the fact her father is about to leave her.
The Death of Eli Gold is a mesmerising family drama which confounds the expectations anyone might have that David Baddiel as a TV comedian. It is the work of a very fine novelist, here writing at the peak of his powers.
©2011 David Baddiel (P)2011 HarperCollins Publishers Limited
Having previously read and enjoyed The Secret Purposes I was expecting another good book from David Baddiel. And I wasn't disappointed. Slightly heavy going at the beginning it soon became worth sticking with. It tells the story of 'the greatest living writer' on his death bed from the perspective of four characters. I enjoyed all four strands, but particularly that of Violet his first wife. I thought the narration was top notch as well. On occasion it was laugh out loud funny but also had plenty to say about ageing, fame and love and certainly made me think.
When i'm reviewing an audio then I really am considering both the story and the reading of the story. I like David Baddiel and have enjoyed his previous books but I found this one pretty average. I give the actual story 3 stars but the unfortunately the reading of it doesn't project the humour. I spent some time imaging David reading it himself in my head and I can imagine how much better it could have been if he had read it himself but he didn't and so overall I give this a 2 star rating.
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