Believe Me: A Memoir of Love, Death, and Jazz Chickens by Eddie Izzard – review, of sorts

Believe Me: A Memoir of Love, Death, and Jazz ChickensBelieve Me: A Memoir of Love, Death, and Jazz Chickens by Eddie Izzard

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I got an advance read of this through First to Read and I’m happy for the opportunity.

Charming, vulnerable, human, humanitarian. Obviously quite funny, but as with his stand-up comedy, subtle. I think anyone expecting an autobiography of such a complex man… um, transgender…to mimic his standup will be disappointed. It’s a story of a life, and of how Mr. Izzard came to live that life.

We see the polished performance, not the unsure starts and fits, and think he’s a natural. He will tell you it is work. But work he loves. I’ve always admired his intelligence – performing his complete show in three (he’s working on more!) languages? One aside to an American audience always makes me laugh: “You have no idea…(what I’m referring to)…” Izzard asked Robin Williams in 1997 if he thought his comedy would work in America and Williams said, “Yeah. With the smart people.” Spot on, Robin.

So this is not a George Carlin transcription made into a book (“flags” are mentioned in his marathon of marathons chapter, and “cake” is never opposed to death), a Bob Newhart deadpan autobiography that is hilarious on its own, an “Awesome Sh*t My Drill Sergeant Said” compilation.

It’s a story of a life … so far.

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