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Throwback Thursday Review: Best Foot Forward

Best Foot Forward audiobook cover. Wearing a black suit, Adam poses with a mic stand, in front of a solid yellow background. Best Foot Forward by Adam Hills.
My rating: 4 of 5 stars ⭐⭐⭐⭐
Audiobook Duration: 8 hrs 8 mins.

Though I was hoping for a little more about his personal life rather than just his journey into standup, Adam Hills' book, Best Foot Forward, was still funny, warm, engaging, and full of his trademark positivity. The audiobook version was wonderfully narrated by Adam himself, and I can only imagine that the print copy is far poorer without his Billy Connolly impressions!

Despite his work during the Paralympics, and tenure as host of The Last Leg, Adam is very clear that in many ways his disability has been less of a feature and more of a footnote. Though it has often not been a driving force for him, it has undeniably helped to shape his experience, and in latter years has played an increasingly dominant part in the projects he has pursued. As a fellow personage of the differently-abled variety, I loved the stories about Adam's childhood and how his parents sought to normalise the medical assessments and process of fitting new prosthetics. His enthusiasm for life and the people with whom he shares it is at its most brilliant when he talks about others he has met who have overcome various forms of adversity to find some happiness and fulfillment. I was delighted to learn of his recent work with the sports teams, which will make excellent use of his effusive kindness and optimism, and provide a legitimate outlet for the rabid competitive streak that marks out many stand up comedians and keeps them getting back up - in life and on stage.

Adam's genuine, welcoming, supportive personality shines through in his narration of this book. It often felt like he was in the room just chatting about his life rather than narrating words from a page. When I reached the end I felt as though I wanted to ring him up and tell him how much I'd enjoyed the book, as if we'd become firm friends throughout the eight hour journey into his reminiscences. It takes a very personable narrator to leave their listener with such a sense of intimacy at the end, and demonstrates his experience as a storyteller.

Whilst this book was more of a professional reflection on his life to date, I can say without any hesitation that if he ever wrote a more personal memoir then I would be delighted to read that, too.

View on Audible.co.uk
(To buy this book, listen to a sample, or add it to your wishlist!)

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