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A Liar's Autobiography: Volume VI

4.06  ·  Rating Details ·  556 Ratings  ·  54 Reviews
Graham Chapman reveals what it was like to be part of the revolutionary and zany Monty Python teamRequired reading for Monty Python fans, this true and false memoir is Graham Chapman's own hilarious account of his life as a Python and as a homosexual. The book equals Joe Orton's famous Diaries in providing an unblushing account of a gay lifestyle linked to entertainment. F ...more
Paperback, 244 pages
Published 1999 by Methuen Publishing (first published October 16th 1980)
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Fishface
Sep 22, 2016 Fishface rated it it was amazing
I laughed, I cried, I threw up! OK, I didn't throw up, but I did laugh and cry all the way through this autobiography, written by 4 authors, plus a bit after the end by Eric Idle. This one is every bit as bizarre and disjointed as you might expect from the zaniest Python of them all. Full of misleading, repeatedly amended and often denied details of Dr. Chapman's life -- there are at least 3 different birthdates given for the great man in here, just for starters. I finally feel I understand how ...more
Robert
Mar 02, 2009 Robert rated it it was amazing
The funniest book I have ever read. Joke after joke of surreal fantasy mixed with gorgeous hyperbole on every searing page. I sound very pretentious but it really is hILARIOUS with a capital 'h'.
Ian Wood
Sep 23, 2007 Ian Wood rated it it was amazing
Shelves: monty-python
‘A Liar’s Autobiography’ is quite unusual for an Autobiography as it was written by five people only one of which is Graham Chapman, it is however his life story, at least partly. The series of co-authors, including Douglas Adams of Hitchhiker fame, add to the book’s overall charm of questioning weather the ‘Liar’ it claims to be about is in fact telling us the absolute truth,

Whist the over members of Python worked out side the group on a series of other projects and collaborations Graham Chapma
...more
Gijs Grob
Graham Chapman's autobiography starts as confusing and unsettling as one might expect from Monty Python's most radical member. Luckily, after this rather tiresome start a more classic autobiography emerges, with a clear chronology, and vivid, if often exaggerated memories, especially of Chapman's student years at Cambridge. Chapman's account even gains emotional depth, when he talks about his own coming out, of his de facto adoption of difficult youngsters, and of kindred spirit Keith Moon. The ...more
Sophie
Jul 08, 2014 Sophie rated it really liked it
Shelves: biography
It's probably one of the funniest and touching autobiography I have ever read.
Graham Chapman and his co-authors mixed with great efficiency the touching and moving parts(his coming out, his alcoholism, how he presented his companion to the other Monty Python) and furiously hilarious, like how lazy Chapman and cleese were once in Ibizza, and took holidays instead of writing scripts, the Monty Python shows outside the UK etc..
Everything is recalled in a light and funny way. I like a lot how he wro
...more
Mark
Aug 05, 2012 Mark rated it liked it

This book is an anarchic mess, in the image of its maker.
As promised, there is a lot of lying here, a lot of silliness. At times the flights of fancy fall flat, oftentimes they cause LOL. And there is a sincere sounding heart to the book, about the author's alcoholism, his medical training, mountaineering, his foster child. And lots and lots about him being "a butch pouff with a pipe", and a crazy loon.

This is recommended but not essential reading for any Monty Python fan.
Tom Schulte
Mar 21, 2015 Tom Schulte rated it liked it
Shelves: bio, theater
I was drawn to this as a Python fan, and because I heard it was so funny. while there is much humor here, I find it more moving than hilarious. I feel confronted with his own alcoholism and promiscuity, Chapman used the jokes as a shield and the effect is more sadness than mirth.
Aleks
Jun 05, 2009 Aleks rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed this book. He was very open about everything in his life. My favorite story is how, as a young child, he put a chair in the sink and sat in it. He said he wanted to see the sink's perspective.
Tara Kontra
Sep 25, 2012 Tara Kontra rated it it was amazing
Graham Chapman, the gay alcoholic (dead) member of Monty Python: Confusing. Hilarious. Chaotic. Brilliant.
Rob Charpentier
Apr 18, 2014 Rob Charpentier rated it really liked it
Shelves: biography, humor
In my estimation Graham Chapman was the bad boy, or fuckup, if you will, out of all the members of Monty Python’s. Of course, his competition for this dubious role among the group wasn’t very stiff by comparison. Nevertheless, if it sounds a little harsh to speak of the dead in this way just consider the fact that he frequently caroused with Keith Moon, the infamous maniacal drummer prankster of rock band The Who. This alone shows that he could really be nothing less of a wild man himself and ma ...more
Liss
Jul 16, 2014 Liss rated it it was amazing
Shelves: film-tv-media
I contentedly sigh as my joyous little journey through this book comes to a close.

I first need to say that this book is rich with the voice of Graham Chapman. Well, that's surprising, you might sarcastically point out, this is only his bloody autobiography after all. But hang tight, I rather mean that it so beautifully documents his personality, world view and general life which might otherwise have been somewhat eclipsed by the more readily accessible (and rather much more on-going) personalit
...more
Romana
Dec 31, 2016 Romana rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Je to naprosto obtulární.
Mike
Apr 26, 2012 Mike rated it really liked it
Shelves: nonfiction, humor
Graham Chapman's autobiography is at times silly, surreal, and touching. It is loosely arranged in chronological order, mostly covering his days in medical school and ending shortly after the death of his friend Keith Moon. There are a few hilarious bits but outside of the delirious/surreal interludes most of the time Chapman shows a fairly dry sense of humor. Based on his performances in Monty Python I imagined he was just very silly, but he also displays some incredibly dark humor as well.

He p
...more
Jon Shanks
A little bit tricky to get into as first as thing get so surreal and silly you'd want Chapman's Colonel character from Monty Python to come along and stop things. One might forgive Chapman as his struggles with alcoholism had undoubtedly left this mind fuzzy on some of his past, but he is able to come up with plenty of witty anecdotes from his time in education, his burgeoning medical career and amusing scrapes hes gets into, sometimes with celebrity pals, sometimes not, as well as some quite fr ...more
Tom
May 14, 2014 Tom rated it it was amazing
It's just a flesh wound. I fart in your general direction. Your mother was a hamster and your father smelt of elderberries. Strange women lying in ponds is no basis for a system of government. This parrot is no more; He has ceased to be; he's expired and gone to meet his maker; he's a stiff, bereft of life, he rests in peace; if you hadn't have nailed him to the perch he'd be pushing up the daisies; he's rung down the curtain and joined the choir invisible; this is an ex-parrot!

The Monty Python
...more
Snailes
Jan 30, 2014 Snailes rated it it was amazing
Simply awesome, this book was as blurry (but in a good way) like any Monty Python show. Id highly recommend this book to anybody who is into this, and you get a whirlwind inside tour of how it was to be with the Pythons and especially the most crazy one.
Interesting note on the side, I read the German translation by Harry Rowohlt (who on a side note I always knew I couldnt stand him and this view was confirmed when I recently read how he threw dirt at David Sedaris for being a boring writer and t
...more
Sean
Jul 27, 2011 Sean rated it liked it
It has come to the attention of this reviewer that the so-called 'facts' contained in what is clearly not at all or at least mostly not very much and yet, granted, a little bit of an autobiography are not at all facts but are instead the--what? Yes, I would like another gin and tonic, thank you--and furthermore--BRRBING BBBRING--sorry, phone, what? Who the bloody hell are you? Why on earth would I want now to relate my feelings on the north atlantic halibut? I'm writing a review, madam, good day ...more
Bethanie
May 27, 2012 Bethanie rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Brad
Jun 21, 2008 Brad rated it it was amazing
This is probably the most hilarious book I have ever read. I purchased it on a trip to Paris, I think, and remember laughing aloud in public, several times, while doing laundry. It would help considerably if you are a bit of a Monty Python's Flying Circus fan, in order to get many of the references to particular sketches and such. If you're a fan, I can't recommend this enough. A good history lesson about the group and Chapman's personal life, embellished at times as you would expect from one of ...more
Carol
Feb 18, 2013 Carol rated it it was amazing
I am pulling this off my shelf and rereading since I just learned it was made into a movie. I am not a keeper of books, but this book has moved with me since I acquired it in 1985. One of the funniest books I ever read and certainly the most unique autobiography.
Becky
Jun 05, 2011 Becky rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Fans of Monty Python
Crazy, mad read that I could only recommend to a Python fan. In turns funny and sad as he battles with alcoholism. I listened to the audio book, and let go of what was reality, or his creative genius - or both. Learned about this book when checking out info about Monty Python.
Erika
Jun 07, 2008 Erika rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
My favorite Python. I had to special order it on tape because the little bookstore in Port Huron couldn't get it in print, for some reason. It was read by Chapman, which made it even better.

What did I learn? Graham Chapman was one messed up dude.
Holmlock
Nov 22, 2016 Holmlock rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
SPOILERS AHEAD! It turns out Graham Chapman was possibly the funniest (top 5 at least) alcoholic-mountaineer-raging-poof-comedian-actor-doctors ever. A butch alcoholic-mountaineer-raging-poof-comedian-actor-doctor with a pipe.
Sarah
Jun 13, 2009 Sarah rated it it was ok
Graham's autobiography was rambling and a little too focused on sex. I imagine he has some amazing stories about working with Monty Python, but he probably doesn't remember any of them. Or at least, he didn't bother to share them.
Disappointing.
Paul
Aug 04, 2012 Paul rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The strange weird life of Graham which seems to involve various old Graham Chapman/Douglas Adams sketches and people arguing in footnotes*.

*Which is quite bad**.

**Well it is***.

***See above.
Mary  Goodnight
Jul 30, 2011 Mary Goodnight rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Une autobiographie écrite en plein delirium tremens par le plus fou de ces cinglés de Monty Pythons. Un régal de nonsense, avec quelques passages très touchants.
Roy
Sep 26, 2016 Roy rated it it was amazing
Remember reading this book in one session , brilliant and funny .
Savinek
Dec 09, 2013 Savinek rated it it was amazing
I'm french so I read it in french.
Great great book ! Very good english humour (of course, it is what we expect with one of the Monty Pythons !).

I enjoyed it :)
Zachary
Nov 03, 2014 Zachary rated it really liked it
Shelves: best-of-all-time
Der Film war recht angenehm, und dieses Buch ist im Grunde eine ungekürzte Version des Films mit weniger Bilder. Der Film ist nur eine animierte Version von Graham Diktat der Geschichte.
Willow
Nov 22, 2012 Willow rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
I have absolutely no idea if any of this book is true (it is called a "Liar's Autobiography after all). I find that I didn't care in the least while reading it and enjoyed it immensely.
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Graham Chapman was an English comedian, actor, writer, physician and one of the six members of the Monty Python comedy troupe. He was also the lead actor in their two narrative films, playing King Arthur in Monty Python and the Holy Grail and the title character in Monty Python's Life of Brian.
More about Graham Chapman...

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“...A secure future seemed mapped out for me. Too secure, too mapped out. If I carried on in medicine, I realized I'd have a pretty good idea exactly what I'd be doing ten, twenty and even thirty years from that moment. It struck me like a halibut from the North Sea that that was not the way my life should go at all. What was the point of working on through the age of sixty-five and taking a chance on a better reincarnation next time?” 2 likes
“For male readers: imagine being nine months constipated having inadvertently swallowed a coconut whole, and then being asked to lie on an operating table, legs apart, with lots of people watching dressed in silly clothes. Would you be able to shit?” 0 likes
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