James Acaster's Classic Scrapes
James Acaster has been nominated for the Edinburgh Comedy Award five times and has appeared on prime-time TV shows like MOCK THE WEEK, LIVE AT THE APOLLO and RUSSELL HOWARD'S STAND UP CENTRAL.But behind the fame and critical acclaim is a man perpetually getting into trouble. Whether it's disappointing a skydiving instructor mid-flight, hiding from thugs in a bush wearing a bright red dress, or annoying the Kettering Board Games club, a didgeridoo-playing conspiracy theorist and some bemused Christians, James is always finding new ways to embarrass himself.Appearing on Josh Widdicombe's radio show to recount these stories, the feature was christened 'James Acaster's classic scrapes'. Here, in his first book, James recounts these tales (including never-before-heard stories) along with self-penned drawings, in all their glorious stupidity.

James Acaster's Classic Scrapes Details

TitleJames Acaster's Classic Scrapes
Author
ReleaseFeb 19th, 2019
PublisherHeadline
ISBN-139781472247186
Rating
GenreNonfiction, Humor, Comedy, Audiobook, Biography

James Acaster's Classic Scrapes Review

  • Michael Legge
    January 1, 1970
    Shame he dies in the end.
  • Jason Koivu
    January 1, 1970
    I'm really going to miss James' stories. He's a great storyteller and he's gotten himself into enough wacky scrapes to make his tales book-worthy. There are occasional and genuine "WTF?!" moments, side-splitters, and snort-laugh inducers herein!The book is full of car crashes that seem to happen around every turn, sleeping in bushes dressed in a dress, cabbage-related pranks, and quite a few hilariously terrible festival and party-going experiences. There's a whole section in which a rather earl I'm really going to miss James' stories. He's a great storyteller and he's gotten himself into enough wacky scrapes to make his tales book-worthy. There are occasional and genuine "WTF?!" moments, side-splitters, and snort-laugh inducers herein!The book is full of car crashes that seem to happen around every turn, sleeping in bushes dressed in a dress, cabbage-related pranks, and quite a few hilariously terrible festival and party-going experiences. There's a whole section in which a rather early midlife crisis at 18 years of age drove Acaster to start manically attacking his bucket list. This sent him off skydiving for charity, singing karaoke, doing stand-up and playing in numerous failed bands, during which time inevitable hijinks ensue.Would I be as interested in this book if I wasn't already familiar with James Acaster via British panel gameshows like 8 out of 10 Cats and Would I Lie to You?? Probably not. But I'm glad I found him and that my enjoyment of his quirky comedy led me to his memoir. I'd suggest listening to the audiobook version narrated by Acaster himself. Being a standup comedian and knowing his material through and through, he delivers a great performance. This is not comedy in the energetic, balls-to-the-wall vain of Eddie Murphy or Robin Williams. This is observational humor with well-crafted callbacks from a unique voice that takes some getting used to. The Acaster cadence needs to grow on you. Let it and enjoy!
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  • fufu
    January 1, 1970
    The only reason I didn't finish this the day I bought it is because I laughed so hard and so often reading it that it was an honest-to-jesus-christ struggle to make progress. My face hurt, my stomach hurt and I was filled with glee the entire time. When happy tears of laughter are blurring your vision, you just can't read. I want to grab the audible version even though I rarely listen to books on tape (especially if I've already read them)- this is an exception because I know it will be so good. The only reason I didn't finish this the day I bought it is because I laughed so hard and so often reading it that it was an honest-to-jesus-christ struggle to make progress. My face hurt, my stomach hurt and I was filled with glee the entire time. When happy tears of laughter are blurring your vision, you just can't read. I want to grab the audible version even though I rarely listen to books on tape (especially if I've already read them)- this is an exception because I know it will be so good.I don't think I can handle hearing the Humpty Dumpty chapter again though, because it nearly killed me the first time and I had really embarrassing, loud, ugly giggles going on but I'm already smiling just thinking about hearing James say "That egg man!" so I probably will.
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  • Tony
    January 1, 1970
    Wonderful!Unlike many others who have praised this, I couldn't read it in a day. In fact, it took me considerably longer. I found that if I savoured it - and 'dipped-in', it seemed so much funnier.He insists all in here is exactly how it happened and I'd like to think that's true. My memory wouldn't be able to pull that much detail from childhood though!Worth a read!
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  • Riley Redgate
    January 1, 1970
    what a gentle, observant, hapless, and hilarious human beingalso, the chapters of this that involve car crashes are like the weird alternate-universe comedic version of I AM, I AM, I AM(listened on audio, of course, bc i got interested in this through his (genius) standup and couldn’t imagine depriving myself of his delivery! he always sounds hilariously affronted by something. usually his own actions. i love him)
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  • Samantha Kilford
    January 1, 1970
    Let me start this by saying I love James Acaster. I recall first seeing him in 2011 on Russell Howard’s Good News and being an avid follower ever since. I will seriously watch anything he’s in. He might actually be my ultimate favourite comedian, which made picking up his memoir a no-brainer. 301 pages of Acaster hilarity? Yes, please.Unfortunately, being such an Acaster fan meant that I was already familiar with a large bulk of the stories recounted in this book. Having binge-listened to Josh W Let me start this by saying I love James Acaster. I recall first seeing him in 2011 on Russell Howard’s Good News and being an avid follower ever since. I will seriously watch anything he’s in. He might actually be my ultimate favourite comedian, which made picking up his memoir a no-brainer. 301 pages of Acaster hilarity? Yes, please.Unfortunately, being such an Acaster fan meant that I was already familiar with a large bulk of the stories recounted in this book. Having binge-listened to Josh Widdicombe’s podcast on my morning commutes to college when studying A-Levels, I greatly enjoyed Acaster’s segment on it where he would recount an embarrassing anecdote dubbed by Widdicombe and listeners as ‘Classic Scrapes’. I’d often have to stifle in my laughter so as to not look absolutely crazy when out in public.That being said, Acaster’s Classic Scrapes book does have a lot of new stories as well as old favourites he’s told on the podcast. It’s written in such an engaging tone that captures Acaster’s awkward appeal. There were so many times whilst reading that I would genuinely giggle out loud or face palm at Acaster’s terrible yet utterly hilarious life decisions. A personal favourite of mine is the story of how James jazzed up the old nursery rhyme Humpty Dumpy to the tune of the hit song ‘La Bamba’ in a music lesson and thus becoming a classroom popstar sensation.I did really enjoy James Acaster’s Classic Scrapes, it reminded me just why I adore him. There’s quite honestly never a dull moment in the book, but it’s not one I would recommend devouring in one sitting. It’s a bit of a pick-me-up read that you come back to every so often for a good laugh. Some of the stories, whether you’ve heard them on Widdicombe’s podcast or not, are just sheer comedic genius that you just want to savour them.However, I heartily recommend that you also purchase the book in audio format as I don’t think you can beat really listening to James tell them in his usual quirky, comedic manner. Or, alternatively, I believe a few of Acaster’s ‘scrapes’ have been ripped from Widdicombe’s podcast and exist on YouTube in audio format so maybe give them a listen there too if you’re tentative about investing in the book.Read this review and more on my blog!
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  • Georgina Merry
    January 1, 1970
    [Audio book review] Having laughed my head off at Acaster's quirky humour when he's appeared on panel shows, I began this book with high expectations. Overall, I'm mildly disappointed. There weren't nearly as many laugh-out-loud moments as I'd anticipated, and although his "scrapes" are interesting and somewhat daft, I genuinely couldn't care less. This quasi-memoir gives us clear insight to Acaster's life. He seems like a genuinly good bloke, and there were some funny moments, just not enough f [Audio book review] Having laughed my head off at Acaster's quirky humour when he's appeared on panel shows, I began this book with high expectations. Overall, I'm mildly disappointed. There weren't nearly as many laugh-out-loud moments as I'd anticipated, and although his "scrapes" are interesting and somewhat daft, I genuinely couldn't care less. This quasi-memoir gives us clear insight to Acaster's life. He seems like a genuinly good bloke, and there were some funny moments, just not enough for my liking. Maybe it's me? I mean, I liked it, but in much the same way as I'd like watching a repeat of The Simpsons I've seen a hundred times because there's nothing else on but the news. It's pretty good, I just didn't think it was great.
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  • Dani Jade
    January 1, 1970
    Listened to the audiobook, narrated by the man himself, whilst on a road trip - literally laughed out loud, multiple times. Not just ‘heh’s or fast exhales, actual laughter. Hilarious. I want him to have a good life, but also I do want him to get into more scrapes so he has to write a second book about them...
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  • Don Jimmy
    January 1, 1970
    Loved it. Highly recommended.
  • Luke Burrage
    January 1, 1970
    I think my favourite comedian memoir I've read so far. Maybe because so many of the classic scrapes are so close to stories of my own... I just could never tell those stories in such a funny way!
  • Elin
    January 1, 1970
    james acaster is an absolute legend, every decision he makes in this book is simultaneously the smartest and the stupidest thing i've ever heard lmao. every single story was hilarious (i laughed out loud so many times!!) and each story even more ridiculous than the last. i am now going to go listen to him recount the cabbage story on josh's radio show bc that's how much i loved this!
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  • Mary Grand
    January 1, 1970
    very very funny book.....embarrassed myself laughing out loud , loved it.
  • Sam (she_who_reads_)
    January 1, 1970
    4.5 ⭐ 4.5 ⭐️
  • Rick Burin
    January 1, 1970
    I laughed out loud on the first page, and carried on in a similar vein from there. This succession of stories about Acaster messing stuff up, often in spectacular fashion, is inevitably uneven but frequently painfully funny. The story about the singer in his nu-metal band is genuinely one of the funniest things I have ever read (it made me cry with laughter on a train) and ‘Fell Foot Sound’ and ‘Cabadging’ are both classics, though there’s at least one great joke in even the most minor scrapes, I laughed out loud on the first page, and carried on in a similar vein from there. This succession of stories about Acaster messing stuff up, often in spectacular fashion, is inevitably uneven but frequently painfully funny. The story about the singer in his nu-metal band is genuinely one of the funniest things I have ever read (it made me cry with laughter on a train) and ‘Fell Foot Sound’ and ‘Cabadging’ are both classics, though there’s at least one great joke in even the most minor scrapes, and the cumulative effect – with most of them littered with callbacks – is joyous.Though the efforts to segue from one tale to the next are a little laboured, and Acaster’s written voice isn’t always as striking as the one he employs in stand-up (I think because it shouldn’t just be the same, even if sharing that sublime deadpan incredulity), now and then he’ll throw in something moving or profound. Mostly though it’s just very, very funny, which is really what you want from a comedy book. I haven’t laughed this hard at a book in a couple of years.
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  • Tess
    January 1, 1970
    Listened to this on audiobook and laughed SO HARD. Then I cabaged my sister for Christmas.
  • Elena Orde
    January 1, 1970
    Ive just written 7 reviews in a row and am fresh out of witty or intelligent thoughts. This book is very funny, I love James acaster and his incredibly unique comic voice, you should read it. And also watch Repertoire on Netflix.
  • Rob Frampton
    January 1, 1970
    I like James Acaster. He has a unique style and a quirkiness that sets him aside from the punsters and the do-you-remember-Spangles standups. Unfortunately what makes him a funny performer hasn't translated too well to the printed page. Anecdotes too feel both forced and long-winded and (often fatally) just not funny. I haven't heard the radio shows from which these tales derive, but it does feel at times as if the book is an unedited transliteration and maybe a bit of judicious editing would ha I like James Acaster. He has a unique style and a quirkiness that sets him aside from the punsters and the do-you-remember-Spangles standups. Unfortunately what makes him a funny performer hasn't translated too well to the printed page. Anecdotes too feel both forced and long-winded and (often fatally) just not funny. I haven't heard the radio shows from which these tales derive, but it does feel at times as if the book is an unedited transliteration and maybe a bit of judicious editing would have heightened the impact of tales that probably come alive in a club or theatre.
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  • Sarah Tipper
    January 1, 1970
    This is such a great book. Acaster's stories are wonderful. The one with the punchline of "Here's your Banbury cake" made me laugh out loud. I love it so much I'm considering visiting Banbury and seeing if I can recreate it. Acaster describes nu-metal perfectly and he has amused me greatly. If you were a bit awkward in your younger years this book will make you smile with relief that you weren't as awkward as Acaster (and if you were, I'd like to read your book).
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  • Katie Caldwell
    January 1, 1970
    This book only solidified James Acaster as my absolute favorite, cleverly funny person in the whole world ever! I adore his stand-up so much that I also listen to his podcasts and watch his YouTube content! The story-telling in this book is hilarious and (to me) insanely relatable. I love and believe that I share his ability to make very many smaller decisions that are great on their own, but ultimately combine to form a huge (or just highly inconvenient) disaster. I also found a recurring theme This book only solidified James Acaster as my absolute favorite, cleverly funny person in the whole world ever! I adore his stand-up so much that I also listen to his podcasts and watch his YouTube content! The story-telling in this book is hilarious and (to me) insanely relatable. I love and believe that I share his ability to make very many smaller decisions that are great on their own, but ultimately combine to form a huge (or just highly inconvenient) disaster. I also found a recurring theme that I sort of live by in my own life, which is that constantly failing actually makes you a successful human :-p I am going to get the audio version and have this on repeat in my car!
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  • steph // bookplaits
    January 1, 1970
    I really wanted to laugh out loud at this, but sadly I didn't! I've been loving his stand-up comedy recently (I have rewatched clips on YouTube several times and Repertoire on Netflix is great!), so I thought I'd try this book. I do think it works very well as an audiobook, but apparently hearing him speak isn't enough for me - I need to *see* him as well for me to find the stories funny! There are a few tales I was familiar with because I've seen him tell them on panel shows, etc. and they are I really wanted to laugh out loud at this, but sadly I didn't! I've been loving his stand-up comedy recently (I have rewatched clips on YouTube several times and Repertoire on Netflix is great!), so I thought I'd try this book. I do think it works very well as an audiobook, but apparently hearing him speak isn't enough for me - I need to *see* him as well for me to find the stories funny! There are a few tales I was familiar with because I've seen him tell them on panel shows, etc. and they are hilarious there but only brought a smile to my face in the book, perhaps because they were already familiar. Fingers crossed I can get tickets to see one of his shows next year though!
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  • Shayney Hardcastle
    January 1, 1970
    4.5 starsThis book was funny and there were moments where I found myself in pure laughing fits. I am already a fan of James Acaster, so when I saw this book, there was no question about buying it and reading it. So if you are a fan of his, then I would definitely recommend you buying and reading this book. Reading about his night spent in the bush, of course the classic cabbage incidents and every and all other scrapes he’s gotten into and shares with his readers.
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  • Fern Love
    January 1, 1970
    James Acaster is one of my favourite comedians.I loved this book and would advise people to listen to the audio version narrated by James Acaster himself to fully appreciate his telling. I love his dry delivery and slightly bizarre life. From crashing three cars, HE WROTE OFF THREE CARS!!! to skydiving for Age Concern to trying to collect all the "W"s. It was weirdly funny from start to finish.
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  • Rob Bick
    January 1, 1970
    i’d already heard a lot of the scrapes but did nearly drown listening to the one about the comedy gig at the music festival. I really hope he has stopped driving. He is on the next series of taskmaster.
  • Daniel Durrance
    January 1, 1970
    Apparently right this moment I have a bit of an obsession with James Acaster, and reading this I have found one of the only books I have laughed out loud to, alone, on my break at work. That's what this does to you. Enjoy
  • Adam
    January 1, 1970
    Bloody funny. I chuckled the whole way through. Usually I race through books I'm enjoying, but I had to ration myself to reading just a few scrapes per day so it wouldn't be over too fast. Would recommend.
  • Becca
    January 1, 1970
    This is hilarious and you should read it. Also check out James’ Live at the BBC and his special Repertoire on Netflix :)
  • Luke Stoltzfoos
    January 1, 1970
    Acaster: A hero among men.
  • Zoe (BookswithDaggers)
    January 1, 1970
    How did I not know this was a thing!!?
  • Janine
    January 1, 1970
    One of the funniest books I've read in ages. James Acaster is either a madman or a genius. I suspect the audiobook is even more hilarious.
  • Victoria Williamson
    January 1, 1970
    Excellent. Better as audiobook. Read by Author which makes it a laugh out loud experience.
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