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Dawn French: The Unauthorized Biography

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Dawn French is the doyenne of British comedy, with a successful career that started in the 1980s when she was part of the innovative troupe The Comedy Strip. As one half of the funniest and most successful comedy double acts of all time, French and Saunders, her brilliantly observed performances established her as a formidable comic talent. As the female vicar Geraldine Gr Dawn French is the doyenne of British comedy, with a successful career that started in the 1980s when she was part of the innovative troupe The Comedy Strip. As one half of the funniest and most successful comedy double acts of all time, French and Saunders, her brilliantly observed performances established her as a formidable comic talent. As the female vicar Geraldine Granger in the long-running and hugely popular series The Vicar of Dibley she delighted audiences for fourteen years. Now this affectionate biography tells the remarkable story of her rise to fame, from her first meeting with Jennifer Saunders to their twentieth anniversary at the BBC. It also looks at her long-lasting marriage to Lenny Henry and how she juggles the demands of parenthood and career. Dawn French is an entertaining and often moving story that is sure to appeal to her millions of fans.


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Dawn French is the doyenne of British comedy, with a successful career that started in the 1980s when she was part of the innovative troupe The Comedy Strip. As one half of the funniest and most successful comedy double acts of all time, French and Saunders, her brilliantly observed performances established her as a formidable comic talent. As the female vicar Geraldine Gr Dawn French is the doyenne of British comedy, with a successful career that started in the 1980s when she was part of the innovative troupe The Comedy Strip. As one half of the funniest and most successful comedy double acts of all time, French and Saunders, her brilliantly observed performances established her as a formidable comic talent. As the female vicar Geraldine Granger in the long-running and hugely popular series The Vicar of Dibley she delighted audiences for fourteen years. Now this affectionate biography tells the remarkable story of her rise to fame, from her first meeting with Jennifer Saunders to their twentieth anniversary at the BBC. It also looks at her long-lasting marriage to Lenny Henry and how she juggles the demands of parenthood and career. Dawn French is an entertaining and often moving story that is sure to appeal to her millions of fans.

30 review for Dawn French: The Unauthorized Biography

  1. 5 out of 5

    Jake

    DO NOT READ THIS BOOK! This book is highly inaccurate and the author, Alison Bowyer, is a disrespectful and deceitful woman. Dawn French herself in her current comedy show '30 Million Minutes' points out all of the errors with Bowyer's book. Do yourself a favor and read Dawn's autobiography 'Dear Fatty', it's hilarious and actually tells you about Dawn's life, not the fictionalized version by Alison. In fact don't read anything by Alison, I do not trust anything that decrepit imbecile writes anym DO NOT READ THIS BOOK! This book is highly inaccurate and the author, Alison Bowyer, is a disrespectful and deceitful woman. Dawn French herself in her current comedy show '30 Million Minutes' points out all of the errors with Bowyer's book. Do yourself a favor and read Dawn's autobiography 'Dear Fatty', it's hilarious and actually tells you about Dawn's life, not the fictionalized version by Alison. In fact don't read anything by Alison, I do not trust anything that decrepit imbecile writes anymore. P.S If you get a chance to see Dawn's comedy show '30 Million Minutes' definitely go, it's a fantastic experience and will have you laughing and crying, from beginning to end, all at the same time. (Plus Dawn even shows off some of her dance moves)

  2. 5 out of 5

    Narelle

    I was quite disappointed by this biography. It certainly felt like the author had just cobbled together a bunch of newspaper articles and interviews and just mushed them together. Sometimes the same information was repeated a number of times, and I was sick of the constant reminders of Dawn's size, rather than respecting her for her comedic talents.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Cher

    The author of this biography of the famous British comedienne is not very sympathetic toward her subject. As a fan of Dawn French, I didn't enjoy reading the author's suppositions that French's husband (also a wonderful comedian) obviously cheated on her because she is fat and therefore not attractive. As this is the only biography available about French's life, I have to recommend it to those who are interested in knowing more about her. However, be forewarned that the author is rather mean-spi The author of this biography of the famous British comedienne is not very sympathetic toward her subject. As a fan of Dawn French, I didn't enjoy reading the author's suppositions that French's husband (also a wonderful comedian) obviously cheated on her because she is fat and therefore not attractive. As this is the only biography available about French's life, I have to recommend it to those who are interested in knowing more about her. However, be forewarned that the author is rather mean-spirited, which makes reading this book feel sometimes more like listening to gossip than reading a serious biography. To her credit, though, the author has done quite a bit of research and pulls from many interviews to create a very thorough portrait of French's life story.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Phill Sandford

    Alison Bowyer is NOT a journalist. I’d like to say she’s a nasty little stalker, but seeing as the shit she has written in this book is so far from the truth she couldn’t even do that properly. This is a corrupt book, disgusting that weak minded pathetic publishers would even publish this tripe. Pure evil.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Kym Taborn

    Sensationalized writing but covers the main points. I found it more interesting than French's own memoir.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Cathy

    Good photo supplement in the centre of book. Would like to read "Dear Fatty" now.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Deb

    The author went on and on about Dawn's size. Got a bit tiresome.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Andrew Lee

    Bursting with misleading information, repetition of what small details she does know, and basically just talks on and on about the subjects weight. Honestly a first year undergraduate journalism student could have done a better job.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Caitlin

    Read Dear Fatty by Dawn. This woman - Alison - is a sociopathic fuckwit.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Barbra

    Really interesting book about Dawn. Back Cover Blurb: Biographer Alison Bowyer tells the remarkable story of Dawn's rise to fame and how she has overcome many challenges along the way, from her unhappy early days at boarding school to coping with the terrible trauma of her beloved father's suicide when she was just nineteen. She examines Dawn's partnership with Jennifer Saunders and how the two women, both outwardly very different, went on to become friends and to perform together on the alternativ Really interesting book about Dawn. Back Cover Blurb: Biographer Alison Bowyer tells the remarkable story of Dawn's rise to fame and how she has overcome many challenges along the way, from her unhappy early days at boarding school to coping with the terrible trauma of her beloved father's suicide when she was just nineteen. She examines Dawn's partnership with Jennifer Saunders and how the two women, both outwardly very different, went on to become friends and to perform together on the alternative comedy circuit. Their groundbreaking double act, French and Saunders, was forged during those years as they went from earning seven pounds a night at comedy clubs to landing their own television series on the BBC. In 2007, the pair celebrated twenty years with the Corporation. Bowyer describes Dawn's long-lasting marriage to fellow comic Lenny Henry, a union that endured racially motivated attacks in the early days. We see how Dawn and Lenny handled the adoption of their daughter Billie and how they juggle work with the demands of parenthood. Based on first-hand research, this is an affectionate and insightful biography of a woman whose warmth and bubbly personality have made her a national treasure.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Hazel Edwards

    Biographies of creative business women interest me because I like to find out how they balance their business, creative and domestic lives. Listened to this as an audio book while driving. I wondered why it was an unauthorised biography and did feel the biographer's tone was critical of her subject. Also a heavy reliance on quoting newspaper clips and gossip. There was an over emphasis upon French's size of body rather than the scope of her comedic ideas. But the insights into the working partners Biographies of creative business women interest me because I like to find out how they balance their business, creative and domestic lives. Listened to this as an audio book while driving. I wondered why it was an unauthorised biography and did feel the biographer's tone was critical of her subject. Also a heavy reliance on quoting newspaper clips and gossip. There was an over emphasis upon French's size of body rather than the scope of her comedic ideas. But the insights into the working partnership of French & Saunders were illuminating.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Chris

    I enjoyed this easy reading book as I really like Dawn French's comedy. Her life was interesting and glad to find out that she had a loving family and upbringing.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Ruth

    Interesting and entertaining - a quick read.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Kate Oakley

    Lots of inaccuracies and often, the author appears to actually dislike her subject - inconceivable that someone would intentionally spear the national treasure that is Dawn French. AVOID.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Brenton Cullen

  16. 5 out of 5

    Gaynor Evans

  17. 4 out of 5

    Sharil Dewa

  18. 5 out of 5

    Isobel

  19. 4 out of 5

    Tamara

  20. 4 out of 5

    Mary Kouwenhoven

  21. 5 out of 5

    Lesley Warren

  22. 4 out of 5

    Mags

  23. 4 out of 5

    Blay-Ton Tirony

  24. 5 out of 5

    Jenna Baldwin

  25. 4 out of 5

    Wendy Griffin

  26. 4 out of 5

    Cecil N'Estpas

  27. 5 out of 5

    Abi (dragonbookreviews.weebly.com)

  28. 4 out of 5

    Jules Graburn

  29. 4 out of 5

    Margaret

  30. 4 out of 5

    Mr S P Rowlands

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