Weldon, Fay Auto Da Fay

ISBN 13: 9780007109937

Auto Da Fay

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9780007109937: Auto Da Fay

The one and only Fay Weldon tells the story of her turbulent and controversial life.

From the 1930s to the 2000s, Fay Weldon has seen and lived our times. As a child in New Zealand, young and poor in London, unmarried mother, wife, lover, playwright, novelist, feminist, anti-feminist, spag-bol-cook, winer-and-diner, there are few waterfronts that she hasn’t covered, few battles she hasn’t fought. An icon to many, a thorn-in-the-flesh to others, she has never failed to excite, madden, or interest. Her life and times cover love, sex, babies, blokes, poverty, work, politics, and not a few Very Famous Names.

Moving from New Zealand to London to Scotland, from the UK to points east and west, Weldon has sipped, gulped, and sometimes spat out the things that make us what we are today.

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Review:

Auto Da Fay is the scriptwriter, novelist, journalist and pioneering feminist Fay Weldon's candid and enjoyably digressive autobiography. Concluding at the beginning of the 1960s with the birth of her second son and the production of her very first television play, it's primarily an account of her (often arduous) formative years. (Those in search of revelations about her time at the heart of the women's movement will, for the moment at least, have to rely on Big Women, her fictional account of that period.)

Born Franklin Birkinshaw in Barnt Green, Birmingham, in 1931, most of Weldon's childhood was spent in New Zealand. Her father, a philandering doctor, played only a minor, if biologically necessary, role in her existence. She was raised, along with her older sister Jane, by her formidable mother and her bohemian grandmother, a woman once on intimate terms with HG Wells, Rebecca West and Edith Nesbitt. (Weldon's family, it turns out, has an impressive literary pedigree; her grandfather, Edgar, uncle Selwyn and, for a brief while, her mother were all novelists.) Arriving in London just after the Second World War, her mother kept the brood together by working as a servant; the experience of living below stairs later helped Weldon to script the television drama Upstairs, Downstairs. After St Andrews University, Weldon worked in the Foreign Office until becoming pregnant. Defying conventions of the times, she remained a single parent. Following a stint as a consumer agony aunt for the Daily Mirror she drifted into advertising before in utter desperation entering into a crushingly awful marriage of financial (in)convenience. With cool, unwavering honesty she details, in the third person, the truly depressing experience of being hitched to a celibate, Masonic headmaster who encouraged her to work in a seedy West End night-club. She escaped, found true love and, working alongside poets such as Edwin Brock, David Wevill and Peter Porter, went on to pen such winning advertising slogans as "Go to Work on An Egg" and "Unzip a Banana" and began writing seriously. Riddled with Weldon's customary wayward and even mildly contradictory opinions, this frank, acerbic and witty memoir can be infuriating on occasions but is certainly never dull.--Travis Elborough

Review:

‘Wonderfully fluent and entertaining…studded with her trademark gems of crisp observations…you can’t put this terrific book down. You can always trust Fay to be provocative – and this time she excels herself.’ Daily Mail

‘Engrossing and entertaining. This is the sort of book stuffed full of things that you hope are made up but fear are true.’ Observer

‘One of the most prolific, entertaining and provocative of contemporary women writers has sought to make retrospective sense of the muddle and unexpectedness of life. Like her novels, the surface sparkles along merrily enough but there are darker currents beneath.’ Sunday Telegraph

‘It is an astonishing story lightly and deftly told. It will delight Weldon's many fans. Gripping.’ Daily Telegraph

‘The rich, fruity haphazardness of her experience will startle and amaze…as they say, you couldn’t make it up.’ Sunday Times

‘Hilarious…entertaining…compelling…“Auto da Fay” is just like its author: big, blousy and sometimes hard to believe. In the end, though, they both demand our respect.’ Independent on Sunday

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Weldon, Fay
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Book Description Flamingo. Paperback. Book Condition: New. UNUSED, LIKE NEW, NOT EX-LIBRARY, shows signs of shelfwear, 288 pages. The one and only Fay Weldon tells the story of her turbulent and controversial life. From the 1930s to the 2000s, Fay Weldon has seen and lived our times. As a child in New Zealand, young and poor in London, unmarried mother, wife, lover, playwright, novelist, feminist, anti-feminist, spag-bol-cook, winer-and-diner, there are few waterfronts that she hasn?t covered, few battles she hasn?t fought. An icon to many, a thorn-in-the-flesh to others, she has never failed to excite, madden, or interest. Her life and times cover love, sex, babies, blokes, poverty, work, politics, and not a few Very Famous Names. Moving from New Zealand to London to Scotland, from the UK to points east and west, Weldon has sipped, gulped, and sometimes spat out the things that make us what we are today. Bookseller Inventory # 15919

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