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eBook The Summer of a Dormouse ePub

eBook The Summer of a Dormouse ePub

by John Mortimer

  • ISBN: 0142001260
  • Category: Arts and Literature
  • Subcategory: Biography
  • Author: John Mortimer
  • Language: English
  • Publisher: Penguin Books (May 28, 2002)
  • Pages: 208
  • ePub book: 1809 kb
  • Fb2 book: 1666 kb
  • Other: docx lit lrf rtf
  • Rating: 4.9
  • Votes: 107

Description

A melancholic but amusing portrait of life's disappointments and missed opportunities

A melancholic but amusing portrait of life's disappointments and missed opportunities. Journalist, Henry Troutbeck Pottinger is now an old man. He stands in the darkening garden of a vicarage by the sea and looks back on a life which seems to have passed as swiftly as Lord Byron's dormouse summer.

The Summer of a Dormouse : A Year of Growing Old Disgracefully Paperback.

The Summer of a Dormouse book. The Summer of a Dormouse' is a wickedly funny journal in which Mortimer wryly observes the absurdities of old age. After all, "No one should grow old who isn't ready to appear ridiculous". And Mortimer freely admits he often does.

The Summer of a Dormouse : A Year of Growing Old Disgracefully. This book made me smile very often, with its understated hilarity and reminiscences of adventures that would exhaust most men, never mind a man of 80 years

The Summer of a Dormouse : A Year of Growing Old Disgracefully. This book made me smile very often, with its understated hilarity and reminiscences of adventures that would exhaust most men, never mind a man of 80 years. Mortimer celebrates his good fortunes in art, in the law, and in love. We learn that women friends had dubbed him "the thinking woman's crumpet. I enjoyed this small book, but then I should confess to having read all the Rumpole stories many times. I see Mortimer as full of joy, self-effacing, and very wise at this time of his life. May he write much more.

The Summer of a Dormouse John Mortimer Viking £1. 9, pp212 . The real answer lies in this book.

In the place of timor mortis, Mortimer finds solace in saeva indignatio, the satirist's ancient consolation. New Labour comes in for a fair bit of his well-advertised stick. The Summer of a Dormouse is like a long picnic with a wise, old and delightful friend who knows that those clouds on the horizon will eventually rumble with thunder, and are approaching.

John Mortimer was educated at the Dragon School in Oxford and Harrow School, where he joined the . The Mammoth Book of Twentieth-Century Ghost Stories (1998).

John Mortimer was educated at the Dragon School in Oxford and Harrow School, where he joined the Communist Party, forming a one-member cell The Mammoth Book of Twentieth-Century Ghost Stories (1998). The Summer of a Dormouse: A Year of Growing Old Disgracefully (autobiography), Viking Penguin, London (2000); ISBN 0-670-89106-1; Viking Press, New York (2001); ISBN 0-670-89986-0.

With the Willie Brown Uni Band and accordionist Kevin Street. Director: Marilyn Imrie.

The summer of a dormouse. Another Part of Life. Mortimer begins with practical advice for his fellow screenwriters: Writing film scripts is like sending soldiers over the top in the First World War. Very few of them come back alive. From there it’s on to bigger and better things.

Mortimer starts the book with the "thundering voice of God": "From this day forth thou shalt not be able to put on thine own socks. Though he acquires a gadget called the Soxon, he finds it impossible to extract his foot from the mechanism. You have to applaud Mortimer's response when a doctor asks if he is now breathless when taking exercise: "I had to plead ignorance, as I have never taken exercise. Increasing decrepitude fails to hinder his progress around Tuscany, Morocco and on the Countryside Alliance march, where his wife gets Norman Tebbit to carry.

John Clifford Mortimer. Though he suffers from the afflictions with which his father contended-asthma, glaucoma-and has added some of his own, he continues to live with boundless energy, passion, and humor. While most people his age are in full retirement, Mortimer is still motoring through life-traveling to Edinburgh with a substitute wife, lunching with prisoners, and dealing with.

In the third installment of his memoirs, the former barrister, playwright, novelist, and creator of the Rumpole stories discusses what it is like to reach the age of seventy-seven, capturing his energetic, passionate, and whimsical approach to life that allows him to embrace an array of new projects, championing favorite causes, traveling, and more. Reprint.

Comments

Anarahuginn Anarahuginn
Who could resist the reading recommendation of a friend, or of reading a book with the opening lines of - "The time will come in your life, it will almost certainly come, when the voice of God will thunder at you from a cloud, 'From this day forth thou shall not be able to put on thine own socks'."!? Oh dear Lord, I heard. John Mortimer - when in his 70s - goes on to add that he "fortunately living with family" so he can call out for help. As I do when confronted with the same challenge of driving a wavering white foot towards a floppy opening. Sometimes SWMBO sharply informs me to "at least try and do it yourself" so with forehead beaded, cramped toes, huffing and puffing, heart dangerously audible, I put on my boat shoes. I remember a dodge we employed at the navy boot-camp - when no clean socks were left, or all were too holey for parade - of coating our ankles with boot polish, but I fear that my dearly beloved "Keep Calm and Carry On" would not permit this.

Nor is the author excused from such wifely strictures, from his own wife Penelope (his second ... both called Penelope) but she was a real care-giver and he admits he needed both her concern and discipline. He was well aware of himself, remarking that he sometimes "looked" at himself and wondered "whatever will I do next"? Well, the answer was pretty much everything he enjoyed ... plays, charitable works, political agitation, travel, films and many, many books. And at 62 a new daughter to "counteract my tendency to pomposity". One day she told him she no longer loved him, "That is sad" said her father. "Sad, yes, but very interesting" was the child's reply, with all the feminine wisdom of three years!

Opening this part (Three) of his biography with a quote from Byron "When one subtracts from life infancy (being a vegetable), sleeping, eating and swilling, buttoning and unbuttoning - how much remains of existence? The summer of a dormouse." Mortimer adopted this not only as his title but, when he was Knighted in 1996, as the animal on his coat of arms, and words on the banner ... suitability put into Latin of course. He does not mention if he also chose to become Lord Dormouse.

John's father's last words to him - and he admits he knows not if they were long-rehearsed or of spontaneous wit - were "I am always cross when I am dying." I do wish I could remember to say that! You get the impression from the wonderful witty writing in the book - from, of course, the creator of Rumpole of the Bailey - that he too would have been very cross when his time came in 2009, perhaps he chose one line from one of his favorite poets, the Scots makar, Friar William Dunbar "timor mortis conturbat me"?

A downright charming book.
Dreladred Dreladred
An old and dying man, Mortimer successfully enlisted his comic muse in order to provide the balm of humor to describe the end of life. May all of us approach our own eventual death with his wisdom and understanding.
FailCrew FailCrew
John has the English sense of humor that is always good for a laugh..
Qusicam Qusicam
I read a little of this book and then found that I just didn't want to waste my time reading any more. And it sounded so interesting in the NYTimes review! I feel this book is pure garbage. He seems to be under the impression that every thought and memory which flits through his head is of great value. Just as power corrupts, fame insufflates the ego - unless you have the supreme wisdom to resist it. I read halfway thru another book called something like 'the delights of aging'. It was just as disappointing. And I'm aging. Are there any books which genuinely make you believe aging isn't as bad as it feels? Like that music isn't as bad as it sounds? Maybe self-delusion is the only way to joyfully tolerate the whips and scorns. Maybe that's Mortimer's real message here - message by example.
Beahelm Beahelm
Using this imagined pronouncement from God as an introduction to his third autobiography, author John Mortimer, barrister, playwright, novelist, and creator of the Rumpole series, muses on aging and the fact that time passes far more swiftly in old age than in youth. He expects the rest of his life to pass as quickly as "the summer of a dormouse." More a diary in book form than an autobiography with a series of strong controlling themes, Mortimer comments on recent events in his life, jumping from topic to topic, then backing up and revisiting those topics when events change or he learns something new.

The beginning of the book emphasizes his relationship with Franco Zeffirelli, for whom he wrote the screenplay for "Tea with Mussolini." He was fascinated by the casting and filming of that production, and his comments about Judy Dench, Joan Plowright, and Maggie Smith, all Great Ladies of British theatre, who shared billing in the film with the American Cher, add life and spice to the behind the scenes stories, especially when these actors appear nude at Zeffirelli's pool. He jumps quickly from this to his problems with his own broken leg, followed by leg ulcers that will not heal, and his experiments with a "black box," and electrical treatments which have a healing effect.

Soon he is onto the subject of running a campaign to rebuild the Royal Court Theatre, the problems he has had with government financing, with foundations, and with donors. His liberal political goals and his anti-establishment screeds add contemporary British political information to the autobiographical mix, and his reminiscences about growing up with his father, a blind barrister who was carefully tended to by Mortimer's solicitous mother, put his own pre-occupations with the family house and garden into perspective.

Unfortunately, his discussion about his father's blindness, the surgeries his father underwent, his homage to his patient and long-suffering mother, and his own problems and surgeries for detached retinas (apparently inherited) are virtually (if not, actually) lifted from his previous autobiography, Murderers and Other Friends. His story about visiting Sir John Gielgud with his wife and baby daughter Emily in her "pink carry-cot" is also virtually identical to his previous reminiscence from "Murderers and Other Friends." Though he discussed at length his relationship with playwright Harold Pinter in that book, he sees Pinter in this book and comments as if he's never seen him before! Fascinating for anyone who loves Rumpole and the Mortimer writings, this third "autobiography" is more like a free-floating reminiscence written by Mortimer for himself than it is for a wider audience of Mortimer fans. Mary Whipple

Murderers and Other Friends
Rumpole and the Penge Bungalow Murders
Rumpole Misbehaves: A Novel (Rumpole Novels)