Moab is My Washpot by Stephen Fry

Rating: **** (4 out of 5)

Review: I am ambivalent about this book. On one hand it is an extremely well-written account of Mr. Fry’s early life and old-style English education, that manages to be both extremely funny and tragic in its sincerity. On the other hand, the author goes off on tangents a lot, and his love for words meant that his writing was either beautiful and poignant or rather painful to read.

Still, I don’t think I’ve ever seen such an honest and spot-on account of what it feels like to be a child, or rather, how it felt to be a child for me. Of course my life was completely different from Mr. Fry’s (being a girl, from another country and thirty years younger) but I recognized the feelings of shame, humiliation, inadequacy, fierce love, confusion, the need to be brilliant and at the same time wanting to fit in… The looking back at our former selves and to try and understand the completely different person I was. It’s amazing how absolutely honest he manages to be, and how he finds the right words to translate highly complex situations and feelings to paper.

I look forward to reading “The Fry Chronicles”, as I’m pretty sure the best part is still to come.

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