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Clinging to the Wreckage - John Mortimer I picked this book up in the library on a whim, informed by vague memories of 'Rumpole Of The Bailey' on the television as a kid. I'm very glad I did. It's very readable, honest, amusing and original. '

In this volume he writes of his solitary childhood, his remote parents (his father was an unconventional barrister father, whose blindness must never be mentioned), battling earwigs in the mutinous garden, and a vague and endlessly patient mother.

It's a great example of simple economical writing - rather than chronologically work through his life he simply follows an approximate chronology and picks out interesting aspects from his life - or drops in an amusing fact or anecdote.

It's wonderfully entertaining stuff from the late, great John Mortimer. Clinging to the Wreckage' - it transpires - is the first part of John Mortimer's autobiography. is the first of four volumes of JM's autobiography. Looks like I'll be reading them all