"To be young, good-looking, healthy, famous, comparatively rich. Not a book for everyone, I found it very interesting. August 22nd 1996 Alan Ben­nett wrote the screen­play. I watched a lot of documentaries on the 1960s when I was younger, and came across many stories of Joe Orton. At one moment I had to ask, "Was he really a pedophile or was he trying to shock the public?" Although I admire the principle of not excessively editing artists' diaries for publication, Lahr goes a little overboard in this one, leaving in every word from the last eight months of the diary's (and Orton's) life. Outrageous behavior. Orton was gay, proud and promiscuous and this diary does not hide that. Something went wrong. But for a fan, this diary IS fascinating, and knowing the end of Orton's life in advance does give even the most mundane details an eerie cast. By contrast, Joe Orton's diaries were written by an exceptionally talented young writer - working class, gay - at the absolute height of his powers. I'm not sure how long he could have gone on, denying his own need for and others' need for love. I highly recommend this book if you are interested in Joe Orton and/or Kenneth Halliwell. More interesting than most diaries, yet I beg to differ with the introduction in that they show Orton was "playing with fire", which is merely trying to be wise with the dubious benefit hindsight, or reading every aspect of his life as if it were somehow leading up to his untimely and gruesome death. He would have crashed and burned with his own nihilistic hedonism at some point (perhaps when his career was turning down?). That really comes across in these diaries. Knowing this means allowing for some self aggrandizing however Orton died before he had a chance to edit it, though he may have edited as he we. Find all the books, read about the author and more. Either way it is a fascinating record. It was written by Orton with a view to publication. (It's 'interesting' to read Orton claim that his best sexual encounters were with people he didn't particularly like, and that intimacy was more difficult when genuine affection entered.). by Joe Orton. I could have done without the explicit details about his sexual romps with teenage boys. Unable to add item to Wish List. (It's 'interesting' to read Orton claim that hi, Joe Orton's diaries (in 3 parts) ultimately bring about a feeling of embarrassment for a certain circle of 'my people'. Amazon.in - Buy Orton Diaries book online at best prices in India on Amazon.in. I had to hide it from my parents because it was "subversive". Finally, if you are something in between, approach Orton with an open mind. The introduction by John Lahr is well-written and the footnotes are informative. The Orton Diaries: Joe Orton: 9780060914981: Books - Amazon.ca. A very intriguing set of diaries. I like reading journals and this is a cracker, the descriptions of people, places is wonderful. There are flashes of great insight and the diaries are often laugh out loud funny. Orton and Halliwell used young boys for their own gratification little thinking of the damage they were inflicting on them. John Kingsley Orton (1 January 1933 – 9 August 1967), known under the pen name of Joe Orton, was an English playwright, author and diarist. Entertaining, bitchy, slightly prophetic, in hindsight of course, of the brutal death and destruction to come, the murder of playwright Joe Orton by his lover Kenneth Halliwell and Halliwell's suicide directly after. For gay readers, the Tangier section gives a wonderfully intricate portrait of a lost gay refuge. It's true that some of his sexual exploits are detailed quite graphically (and sometimes hilariously) here, but it's his unique perspective and insight which makes the diaries so compelling. in the second section (written in Tangier), sexual activity of the insatiable reads as tedious. But the journals document a remarkable final year starting in December 1966. When he goes to meet Brian Epstein, or Paul McCartney, or goes to accept his Evening Standard award for Loot as best play of 1966, it's like we're in his head with him. in the second section (written in Tangier), sexual activity of the insatiable reads as tedious. Highly recommend. Boy oh boy. I've owned a copy of these diaries for many years, bought this copy as a birthday present and the recipient was over the moon. Throughout the diary, you witness Joe Orton's ability to present characters, fully developed in very few lines. 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