Socrates thought the unexamined life wasn’t worth living. Doris Lessing countered that the unlived life isn’t worth examining. Patrick Richardson’s wonderful memoir fits neither scenario. It is a rich rendering of a life lived to the full, and tells the tale of his own travels, inner and outer. It is full of insight and incident, and fascinating accounts of his own meetings with remarkable men and women along the way. An altogether engaging piece of work.


After his outstanding travel writing, we now have Patrick Richardson’s account of the most important journey of all – his life. And it’s not for the faint-hearted: a gutsy, rollicking, roller coaster of a life story which reminded me more than anything of a racy picaresque novel by one of the eighteenth-century masters. Except that this isn’t fiction, it’s true. The book is teeming with the fascinating characters and even more fascinating encounters that have contributed to a very rich life. So hold tight and prepare for a splendid romp of an autobiography, bubbling over with exuberance and life-enhancing eccentricity, but balanced by insights that are always interesting and sometimes profound.

HARRY REID author and former editor of the Herald 

Patrick Richardson has done it all, and been everywhere. He now invites us on a very personal journey through his colourful past. At times illuminating, moving, cultured and picaresque, this book is always engaging. It’ll almost certainly be the best observed and most entertaining autobiography cum social commentary cum travelogue you’ll ever read.

ANGUS KONSTAM author and ex-chair, Scottish Society of Authors