Book review: ‘The Smoking Diaries’ by Simon Gray

Vol. 1 of playwright Simon Gray’s amusing and meandering reminiscences.

‘The Smoking Diaries’ by Simon Gray

The ‘diaries’ in this four-volume series, of which this is the first, are not really diaries, as such, but more a series of reminiscences masquerading as an informal diary.

Playwright Simon Gray creates a wonderful new character named Simon Gray, who is clearly based on the real McCoy, but with added bumbling and insecurity. The entries are often genuinely laugh-out-loud funny, and often very moving. It’s a special kind of person who can make you laugh at an account of learning about a close friend’s cancer. The description of a financial adviser’s eyebrows also had me guffawing, much to the irritation of the other person in the room.


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By Richard Carter

Richard Carter is a writer and photo­grapher living in Hebden Bridge, West Yorkshire. Website · Facebook · Twitter · Newsletter · Book

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