I’m not sure you’d class this as a biography, more a collection of anecdotes from Jack’s lifetime, as told by him and his father. Whitehall senior was an agent, having many famous clients, so there’s plenty of name dropping throughout the tales. Jack’s posh upbringing certainly isn’t played down either.
I’m not sure how it works in the written version, because part of what makes the audiobook is having both of them in the same room, interrupting and commenting on each other’s contributions. They’re quite happy to rip into one another when they mess up or mispronounce.
It makes for an entertaining book full of stories that you’d never believe if they were told in fiction, related by a pair of engaging storytellers.
One criticism would be that the book just seems to finish. A chapter ends, with little summary or sign-off, and then I was listening to the copyright details.
I had the Audible version, which includes some extra content, including a rebuttal from (long-suffering) Hilary Whitehall (Michael’s wife and Jack’s mum). There’s also an additional anecdote from the pair.
It’s not your traditional biography, it doesn’t try to inspire or show how the subject overcame obstacles to reach the lofty heights (there’s barely mention of Jack’s career, and most of that is derogatory). Instead, it’s the story of a family and those escapades every family has.
Short and fun, and definitely worth the audio version.