Saturday, August 8, 2009
A poignant tell-all written as a series of letters to people who played large roles in her life: her husband Len, her daughter, Jennifer Saunders (Fatty) who was a life long sidekick, her mother, her grandmothers, her brother, a variety of lovers (? - the answer is cagily phrased so one is never sure), and above all her father, who committed suicide when she was in her early teens, everyone who played an important role in helping her define herself. French leaves little to the imagination, treating us to an inside look at a vulnerable, loving, talented woman. I don't normally read celebrity memoirs, but I'm a huge fan of DF, and when I had the chance to pick this up, I grabbed it. It could have done with some editing to tighten things up: the lack of any kind of time line made it difficult to follow at times, but OTOH, it made it easy to read in short, individual 'episodes' as each letter was self-contained. Her letter to her dad in which she lays out the pain and disbelief at his death, is very touching. The letter describing the Queen Mother's visit to their Air Force quarters when she was only 3, is quintessential French. Her teen-age angst, the joys and throes of raising a teenager, and her obvious love for her husband all come through. There are pages and pages of candid photos, most in color, making it quite a vibrant story. I'd recommend it for anyone who is a fan.