By Jon Canter, abridged by Fiona McAlpine.
Read by Stephen Mangan.When TV chatshow host Jack Harris dies, his childhood friend Dave is commissioned to write an authorised biography.
But Dave finds himself incapable of writing a sanitised version of Jack's life.
He wants to tell the truth.
Dave and Jack grow up together in a North London Jewish suburb.
It seems that Dave is the one destined for great things.
At school, Dave is a bright pupil.
But Jack, who is bottom of the class, has the sort of charisma that can't be taught.
At fifteen, he already behaves like a celebrity, exuding a supreme self-confidence.
During the school cross-country race, Jack lures Dave up a tree to take drugs.
But when they are caught, the headmaster punishes the wastrel Jack and the star pupil Dave in very different ways.
Dave is a Cambridge graduate living in a squat, while Jack runs his own jewellery business.
He calls on Dave to help him lure an American soap star into wearing one of his rings.
It's Jack's first encounter with a famous person, and though the meeting is a disaster, a seed of greatness is sown.
Dave takes Jack to a comedy night at the Holloway Tavern.
Jack, now a famous TV star, visits Dave and his artist girlfriend Jess in their tiny Suffolk cottage.
Wanting to help them, Jack commissions Jess to paint his portrait.
When Dave is abandoned by his girlfriend Jess, Jack invites him for a night out in London to cheer him up.
The night turns into a week as Jack takes Dave home to the Buckinghamshire mansion he shares with his scary wife Rita and their adopted son Eric.
Caught up in sleaze, Jack loses his TV chatshow.
Dave decides to sell photos of Jack with prostitutes to a Sunday newspaper.
Somehow, Dave convinces himself this will solve all of Jack's problems, not to mention his own.
Dave hasn't written a word of his biography of Jack, and his publisher wants the manuscript.
Dave gets away with it and wins back his girlfriend Jess, but the happy ending has a price.