when he writes, you read – Literary Review said it clearly and I couldn’t agree more. Stephen Fry with his book The Stars’ Tennis Balls stole my heart. In fact he has stolen it years ago, but that’s a different story. I got this extraordinary book from a friend, just in time when I felt more than ever homesick. And it was a great choice, because the story is about belonging, timing, patience and fate that hates us all. The plot of this psychological thriller has been taken from Alexander Dumas’ The Count of Monte Cristo. The title itself comes from John Webster quote from The Duchess of Malfi: “We are merely the stars’ tennis balls, struck and banded which way please them.”
I don’t think you could go wrong with this book. It’s witty, it’s subtle, it’s exceedingly moving.
You can’t become one of them, even if you feel yourself to be one of them in the deepest pit of you, even if you know in your innermost knowing self that it is your right, your destiny, your need and your duty. Even if you know that you could do it better. And that’s the truth. You would carry it off with so much more style. Carry off the ease that belies any sense of anything at all having to be carried off, if that isn’t too baroque. Carry off that natural effortless taking-it-all-for-granted air. But the opportunity has been denied you because of the terrible mistake of your birth.