The Canterbury Hub

Latest news from CCCU's Journalism course


Review: Dominic Holland Takes on life

The Takes on Life collection are the type of very special books that once you start reading, you can’t stop.

The author, Dominic Holland, is an award-winning author, a well-known British comedian and of course the father of Hollywood A-list actor Tom Holland. Dominic has published multiple novels such as Only In America and its sequel Made In England, however, Takes on Life Volume One and Two are very different from his previous work.

View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Dominic Holland (@dommoholland)

Volume One Vs Volume Two

The two volumes of Dominic Holland’s Takes on Life are perfect little easy reads that hold 31 short essays written about relatable experiences within Mr Holland’s life. The essays vary from stories about parenthood to marriage to downright funny experiences.

The size of the books means they fit perfectly into any handbag or backpack, meaning they’re both ideal books to bring on holidays. Each essay is cleverly titled a ‘take’ and is numbered from one through to 31. Each ‘take’ averages between two to three pages long, with an average of five to 10 minutes of reading time, depending on your reading skills.

Volume two of the collection is just as amazing as volume one. However, it is clear to see that in volume two Dominic had more confidence in choosing what essays he used within the second volume.

The second edition of the collection earned more laughs and gasps from me than volume one did, however, it is very hard to choose a favourite between the both.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Dominic Holland (@dommoholland)

Book become podcast 

Dominic recently started up a podcast titled ‘Takes on Life’. The podcast has the same cover as Takes on Life volume two. In each episode of the podcast, he selects and reads one of his short essays from the book. After reading an insert from his book he invites a guest to speak. Each guest has something different to say and share, meaning each episode of the podcast is completely unique and unpredictable.

Mr Holland has a great voice for podcasts, with his well-pronounced speech and calming tone.

Although the podcast is great to listen to and keeps me entertained when I don’t have the time to read Mr Holland’s books, I do believe that it takes the shine away from the book. The book has so much potential to be its own thing.

Relatable and funny

This is possibly one of the most relatable books known to man. Throughout the book, there are stories about past events, family outings and pranks. It really makes you realise that no matter how famous a family gets, they’re all still human and still have fun.

The two volumes of Takes on Life are absolutely hilarious. Dominic’s comedic talent really shines through the two volumes of Takes on Life. In volume two, it’s clear to see that he has found a way to keep England laughing no matter what.

I highly recommend both volumes of the collection, they’re both incredibly funny and entertaining books.


Both volumes of Takes on Life are available through Dominic Holland’s official website alongside his other published work.