Good Material, Dolly Alderton


December 2023

I finally join many hundreds of thousands of my (probably slightly younger) peers to read something by Dolly Alderton, and I’m so glad I did.

Good Material charts the breakup of Andy and Jen, told by broken-hearted Andy, as all around them thirty-something friends get married and have babies and buy houses - all the markers of being a grown up that feel TERRIBLE when you’re not only not there yet, you’re also homeless with a freelance career that’s petering out, and a shattered love life.

Excuse me, I thought I was talking about myself a decade ago for a minute there.

Anyway, Andy, cannot get over the breakup. He thought he and Jen would be together forever.

Plus he’s a stand up comedian which makes for plenty of ‘good material’ throughout the book and is an entertaining lens to look at youngish metropolitan people trying to have relationships and work life out through.

It’s funny and very well observed, as well as moving and nostalgic. Perfect pre Christmas snuggle read in front of the fire with a good drink. Like Alderton’s debut, Everything I Know About Love, this would make great telly.

Won’t do a complete spoiler but I was surprised by - and enjoyed - the Fleishman turn this took.

I was lucky enough to read Daisy Buchanan’s copy, who had Dolly as her very firt podcast guest back in 2018. Listen here.