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  • History

  • The hilarious, unmissable novel from the brilliant Miles Jupp
  • By: Miles Jupp
  • Narrated by: Miles Jupp
  • Length: 7 hrs and 4 mins
  • 3.8 out of 5 stars (417 ratings)

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History cover art

History

By: Miles Jupp
Narrated by: Miles Jupp
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Summary

The brilliant debut novel from acclaimed comedian, writer and presenter Miles Jupp.

Clive Hapgood is feeling stuck. The private school he teaches at is consuming his life, no thanks to wretched headteacher Julian Crouch. The gentle country life Clive envisaged has stifled him and left his marriage on the brink. What he needs is a holiday - something to remind him and Helen what life used to be like. But when things don't go to plan, and an incident at school begins to weigh heavy on his head, Clive's life starts to unravel in front of him. Has he got it in him to turn things around, whatever the cost? After all, it's his own time he's wasting.... 

For fans of Jonathan Coe, Mark Watson, Michael Frayn and David Nicholls.

©2021 Miles Jupp (P)2021 Headline Publishing Group Ltd

Critic reviews

"The funniest man in Britain has written a wonderful novel. Rejoice!" (Richard Osman)

What listeners say about History

Average customer ratings
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  • 4 out of 5 stars
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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Made me feel increasingly anxious

Although I was with the main character initially, I found listening made me increasingly anxious with absolutely no sympathy for him and just waiting for it all to be over.

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Enjoyable until the v unsatisfactory ending

An enjoyable tale about a fairly hopeless teacher, his relationship with his family and himself. It was just on the right side of funny although a tad depressing at times but totally ran out of steam right at the end - did the author just run out of ideas? Very unsatisfactory after waiting to see how it played out. Turns out it didn’t really play out at all!

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

not sure

If I'd read it myself I think I would have had more of a laugh and read it more in the style of a Tom Sharpe novel. Miles's narration made me feel unspeakably sad for a lot of the time, which was an odd feeling to get whilst listening to my favourite host of the News Quiz.

I also find myself dangerously close to relating to Clive, which has made so uncomfortable I can't bring myself to give it more than three stars.

Which is a very 'Clive' thing to do in and of itself.

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

Disappointing, cliche based story

I am disappointed by this story. The plot is worthy of a sixth form essay but I expected more whit and some originality from Miles Jupp.
The ponderous manner in which the story limped from cliche to cliche would have had me tossing the book aside unfinished if I had the printed version
Miles's gentle reading of the tale did make it bearable to endure to the end.
Had I been the main protagonist's partner I suspect I would have sued for a divorce. "Clive" is a self obsessed, disillusioned teacher. But the school and the other staff members seam to be lost somewhere in a time warp that reflects the educational models of the 1950's rather than the contemporary age, Any criticism of the class structure and elitism of the private education sector has all been said before and with greater conviction.
I was left with the sense that Miles Jupp was a sixth former who had put up his hand to make a bold statement about the inequity of the private sector but having risen to his feet he simply made a statement that was uninspiring, unoriginal and left one wishing he had remained seated.

By no means the worst book on the shelf but like an essay submitted moments before the homework deadline it just about gets a pass mark but the potential for greater reward has been forfeited by lack of adequate research and understanding of the reality of modern education and the safeguarding policies which would have negated one of the main plot lines. C- Mr Jupp, I expected better.

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

I was expecting funny.

some amusing situations but not funny. sad end. sad people one two thre four

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

An Interesting Read

Great to hear Miles narrating his new novel. I found it a strange story, sort of tragicomic and reminded me of Diary of A Somebody by Christopher Matthew.

I would say I enjoyed the story, however ended up feeling slightly exasperated at the latest mishap for the poor protagonist. having said that, it turned into an interesting explanation of the real life implications of living or working with a person with seemingly perpetual bad luck.

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

A pleasure to listen to

Not what I'd usually go for, but I was absorbed and very much enjoyed this book. Brilliant narration.

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

finished too early!

As a man I can say we swallow down emotion far too much and when it does come out it's not really understood. We get scared and sad and lonely but struggle sometimes to talk about it and it can come out in a different way....thats why male suicide is 3 or 4 times more than women and why homelessness is well over double that of women.
The end felt like it should be the middle of the book. I could chop out the holiday section of the book and put another few chapters on the end. Feels like a second book in the making.
I nearly wept several times during the book but I was surprised when the book ended...I wish I could give away the ending so I could explain why I was frustrated. Just to say if you know several men in a marriage I guarantee you will know this story. But I dont want to be one of those people who ruin books.

This book isnt for everyone but will connect to a big chunk of the population.
it's not laugh out loud hilarious but does have funny bits. Book isnt perfect but I quite liked it.

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Great!

Yes - funny in spots but also sad and full of reflection and understanding. Great book.

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Absolutely hilarious

This is a fantastic story that has so many elements of truth within it it’s disarming. Incredibly fast paced and very well narrated for the audible listener. I just loved it.

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