An intimate and fast moving memoir, sometimes laugh-out-loud, recalling Simon Dewhurst’s privileged and eccentric nurturing in an upper-class English family after the last war. He has no time for misery and self-flagellation. Instead, the narrative glides seamlessly and predictably from one hilarious disaster to the next.
His exploits as a soldier, ski teacher, film extra, actor and a cinema projectionist among other jobs, take us from London during the Swinging Sixties to Scandinavia, North America and finally to darkest Africa. The ingredients for the best memoirs are many – his are blue, hilarious, and possibly worrying.
This is a very funny memoir and Dewhurst writes easily with an incisive wit. He has no truck with political correctness. His style is light and airy with little moralizing about the meaning of life, but he is still capable of a good rant when writing about the state of the modern world.
I received this book from the author for the purpose of this review. All comments and opinions are entirely my own.
“I was born a long time ago with a silver spoon in my mouth, but by the time I was thirty I’d just about swallowed it.” -Simon Dewhurst, Broken Lunch: An Irreverent and Hilarious Personal Memoir
Broken Lunch is certainly advertised as a “hilarious” memoir. It features personal stories going all the way back to his great-great-grandfather and occasional rants about the cultures with quick wit and humorous analogies.
Personally, I didn’t find the book to be “hilarious”; “funny” in some chapters and I did laugh a few times, but the book as a whole just wasn’t funny to me. However, I probably have a completely different sense of humor than this dry, almost insulting wit.
The stories were intriguing and I enjoyed reading about his life and the histories of Simon’s family, but like I said, it wasn’t as entertaining as to me as I expected it to be. He is very blunt in his stories as well, not making for a very clean read either.
So honestly, someone else may enjoy this novel much more than I did, but I am only willing to give it 3 out of 5 stars.