Craig Brown’s new book One on One, is totally great. It’s structured like a daisy chain, with each short chapter describing an encounter between two famous or interesting folk leading to further encounters with other, different famous or interesting folk: Frank Lloyd Wright and Marilyn Monroe, for example, followed by Monroe’s meeting with Nikita Khrushchev, which leads to a story about Khrushchev and Labour politician George Brown…and so on. It’s a collection of gossipy anecdotes, really, each one brilliantly chosen and told. Brown is pithy and succinct and gives you just the sort of detail you are dying to know. You think, oh great, I’ll dip in to this, but then you can’t stop reading – or sighing with pleasure. It’s the perfect book, too, to give away as a present.
To celebrate the book, Craig Brown and ‘Friends’ (always people you wished you knew, such as Eleanor Bron) are doing a reading at the National’s Cottesloe Theatre on October 14th. We’ve heard Craig Brown and Friends before and laughed till we cried. It will be 45 minutes of pure heaven, so do go if you can.