The Complete Unreliable Memoirs: Volume One

Clive James

28 April 2022
624 pages


Clive James, a true polymath, became a generation-defining voice as a broadcaster, a critic, a poet and an author. Among his greatest achievements, his five hilarious, heartwarming books of autobiography are collected now in two volumes: his Complete Unreliable Memoirs.

'It is one of the most tender, frank and, above all, funny accounts of growing up I have ever read' – Michael Parkinson

With his trademark humour and self-deprecating style, Clive James proves a hugely entertaining and erudite guide to his own remarkable life.

In this first volume, James explores his childhood adventures in the suburbs of post-war Sydney, his excited arrival in Sixties’ London as a young man and aspiring poet, and his time at Cambridge University where he neglected his studies in favour of poetry, the stage, the music business and the film industry.

From a true national treasure, this is a collection of one of the most well-loved and acclaimed memoirs of our times.

I was born in 1939. The other big event of that year was the outbreak of the Second World War, but for the moment, that did not affect me . . .

'A comic triumph' – London Review of Books

The Complete Unreliable Memoirs: Volume One collects the first three books of autobiography from Clive James: Unreliable Memoirs, Falling Towards England, and May Week Was In June.

The final two books, North Face of Soho and The Blaze of Obscurity, are available in Volume Two.

Part of the Picador Collection, a series showcasing the best of modern literature.

It is one of the most tender, frank and, above all, funny accounts of growing up I have ever read
You can’t put it down once started. Its addictive powers stun all normal, decent resistance within seconds. Not to be missed (Unreliable Memoirs)
Clive James is an intellectual as well as a joker, a wise man as well as a wit