Over the past 50 years, The Times Diary has provided a daily dose of mirth, gossip, innuendo and anecdote from the pens of such writers as Ion Trewin, Michael Leapman, a brace of Corens (Alan and Giles) and Hugo Rifkind.
As the custodian of the column since 2013, as well as being The Times’s political sketch-writer, Patrick Kidd presents an anthology of some of the most amusing and diverting stories from the Diary’s first half-century.
They include the kidnapping of Humphrey, the Downing Street cat; the time that Tony Blair was thrown in prison in New York; Dame Judi Dench’s foul-mouthed riposte to a cabbie and how John Major’s brother inspired David Bowie; as well as examples from some of the column’s long-running series such as Apt Names, Collective Nouns and Jurisprudery.
- ‘Patrick Kidd has picked the best of the Column with items that will amaze and astonish, hard to imagine anyone reading this collection without laughing out loud every page or two. An absolutely essential Christmas stocking treasure for every Times reader.’ – Sue Baker (Love Reading)
- ‘I found it fascinating to look back at some of the earlier items, and note (with help from Kidd’s footnotes) when people who would go on to be famous and/or infamous were first mentioned in the diary.’ – Arnie Wilson (Huffington Post)