A new hardback edition of Alan Bennett's four triumphantly reviewed and bestselling stories to celebrate his eightieth birthday.
The Laying on of Hands, the painfully observant account of a memorial service for a masseur to the famous. The Clothes They Stood Up In, the comic tale of an elderly couple's trials after their flat is stripped completely bare. Father! Father! Burning Bright, the savage satire on the family of a dying man who rules over them from his hospital bed. The Lady in the Van, the true story of the eccentric old woman who is invited to live in a homeowner's front garden. She stays there, in her van, for fifteen years. The home is Alan Bennett's. It became a West End hit, starring Maggie Smith.
Like everything Bennett does, these stories are playful, witty and painfully observant of ordinary people's foibles. They all have brilliant twists, are immensely entertaining and highly moral. And all are modern classics.
The film adaptation of the hit play The Lady in the Van is out now in the UK.Alan Bennett has been one of our leading dramatists since the success of Beyond the Fringe in the 1960s. His television series Talking Heads has become a modern-day classic, as have many of his works for the stage.
At the National Theatre, London, The History Boys won numerous awards including Evening Standard and Critics' Circle awards for Best Play, an Olivier for the Best New Play and the South Bank Award. His play The History Boys was the National Theatre's most successful production ever.
His collection of prose Writing Home was a number one bestseller. Untold Stories won the PEN/Ackerley Prize for autobiography, 2006. Recent works of fiction are The Uncommon Reader and Smut: Two Unseemly Stories.
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