The Smoking Diaries Volume 2

The Year Of The Jouncer

Simon Gray

Published: 2 April 2008
Paperback, B Format
129x197mm, 282 pages
ISBN: 9781847080554
£7.99

Overview

As a baby, Simon Gray discovered that he could move his pram while still nestling inside it.

'It was a complete mystery to the adult intelligences, how had he done it, if it was he who had done it, but if not he, who then and why? So the next afternoon they (Mummy and Nanny) planted the pram in the usual spot, and stood over it, watching - the baby lay there smiling or snivelling up at them, until it struck them that they should try observing the baby when unobserved by the baby, and they withdrew behind bushes and trees etc.; and thus witnessed the swaying of the pram, then the juddering of the pram, then its slow, unsteady progress along the path, the movement accompanied by a low humming and keening sound from within that reminded them more of a dog than a human ... "jouncing" was the word they used for it. I was a jouncer therefore.'

In the second book of his chronicles of triumph and disaster which started with The Smoking Diaries, Gray intertwined scenes from his adult and his childish self to produce a brilliant and moving counterpoint of life's unsteady progress.


About the author

Image of Simon Gray

Simon Gray was born in 1936. He began his writing career with Colmain, the first of five novels published by Faber. He is the author of many plays for TV and radio and films, including After Pilkington, which won the Prix Italia, and the Emmy Award-winning Unnatural Pursuits. He wrote more than thirty stage plays, among them Butley and Otherwise Engaged, which both received Evening Standard Awards for Best Play, and The Late Middle Classes, winner of the Barclay's Best Play Award. His plays Little Nell and Missing Dates were both broadcast on BBC Radio 4 and The Last Cigarette, which he adapted with Hugh Whitemore from The Smoking Diaries, premiered in March 2009. In 1991 he was the BAFTA Writer of the Year. His acclaimed works of non-fiction include An Unnatural Pursuit, How's That for Telling 'Em, Fat Lady? and, published by Granta, Fat Chance, Enter a Fox, The Smoking Diaries, The Year of the Jouncer and The Last Cigarette. He was appointed CBE in the 2005 New Year's Honours for his services to drama and literature. Simon Gray died in August 2008. More about the author





 
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