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Clinging to the Wreckage

Updated: Oct 8, 2020

by John Mortimer

Rating: ****

Very entertaining, very wry and amusing in places. Obviously, the majority of the book is enshrouded in an England that no longer fully exists and that, in itself, is very interesting.

The one theme that began at times to grate a little was Mortimer's constant self-effacing deprecation; especially as it is abundantly clear from very early on that he is an incredibly intelligent character with a sparkling wit and also, a ruthless streak, which he definitely cloaks. But then, this is his autobiography and, therefore, his prerogative to tailor the perspective as he sees fit. I would have also liked a bit more information/emotion surrounding the first wife, Penelope; but then maybe she in common with his second wife did not want anything in the way of their personal lives in the book, which is understandable. However it would have been nice to know Mortimer's feelings in relation to both women as he neatly sidesteps those.

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