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My Animals, and Other Animals

Hardcover / ISBN-13: 9781529436143

Price: £25

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‘I’m always wary of llamas. They’re mischievous and smart. I get a sense, when I approach them, that they are conferring . . . as if to say, ‘That’s that bloke off the telly.’

Bill Bailey has always had dogs in his life, including a Lakeland Terrier called Rocky who would travel with him in the van to his first shows and occasionally join him on stage. Fast forward a few decades and Bill shares his home with a variety of birds, dogs, frogs, chameleons, and an armadillo called Tommy. ‘We even had a giant chicken at the house for a while, a huge Malay cockerel, Kid Creole. After a few stand-offs he took against me. He had to go in the end, I was being stalked in my own back garden.’

That chicken apart, animals have always been at the heart of an extraordinary life as one of the nation’s favourite comedians, actors, musicians and (thanks to Strictly) dancers: from terriers to the orangutans of Sumatra and the parrots that share his breakfast every morning in west London.

As anyone who has ever had a pet knows, animals are a constant source of joy, but they also connect us to the world and to each other, touching on a deeper, older human need for companionship. Full of the leftfield humour, wit and wisdom that has made Bill Bailey such a beloved performer around the world, My Animals, and Other Animals is the story of Bill’s life, but more than that, it’s the story of how all of our lives are enriched by the animals who accompany us on that journey.