Immortalised through her roles in twenty-four of the iconic Carry On films, Joan Sims remains one of Britain’s best-known comedy legends. For five decades – through more than seventy film appearances and work on stage, television and radio – she captured the hearts of audiences around the world. Yet behind the laughter was heartache and personal torment as the incredibly private actress battled depression, insecurity, loneliness and alcoholism.

In this authorised biography of Joan, Andrew Ross details her early years on stage and rise to stardom in theatre revue, her failed romances and the intense bond with her parents which ultimately led to the collapse of her one serious love affair.

Revealed is the truth about Joan’s relationships with her Carry On co-stars (including Kenneth Williams who bizarrely proposed to her), the drink problem which forced her to spend time in a grim Victorian mental institute in the early 1980s and the circumstances behind her reclusive final years and last months in hospital before her death in 2001.

With a cast of characters, ranging from Sidney James and Kenneth Williams to Laurence Olivier and Katharine Hepburn, Joan’s story, from a solitary and lonely childhood in 1930s Essex, to her status as a national treasure in the 1990s, is one of professional success over personal heartache achieved through immense determination.

Drawing on first-hand accounts from Joan’s closest surviving friends and contemporaries including Barbara Windsor, Fenella Fielding, Dame Judi Dench and Sir Tom Courtenay, as well as exclusive material from her personal archive, what emerges is the story of a much-loved lady who battled private demons to become one of the finest and best-loved actresses of her generation.



About The Book

“Too Happy a Face” is a Fantom Publishing production. You can purchase the Audio CD and hardback edition of the book direct from Fantom Publishing by CLICKING HERE.




Our audiobooks download as zipped files (due to their size and for your convenience). Once unzipped you will find all of the mp3 files for your audiobook named, and in correct file order.  Due to the way Apple has designed iOS, iPhones and iPads don’t recognise these zip files automatically (unlike Android devices).  So, if you buy one of our titles via your iPhone or iPad, there are two ways to find and listen to your files:

[1] Download for FREE iZip for iOS – then download the audiobook using the link provided either on the webpage or the email we sent you. After the file has downloaded click on the Open With option and choose iZip. The app will open and ask if you want it to unzip all the files, say yes. A minute or so later you will have a list of mp3 files in order, and you just need to tap on the one you want to play and it will start playing in the Audioplayer. You can easily play, pause, jump forward or back.

[2] Slightly easier – download the zip file to your PC or MAC, unzip it to a folder you know the location of (such as your Music or Documents folder), then use iTunes to transfer the files in the same way you would a music album.

We hope you enjoy your audiobook and come back for more soon!


Tracey Childs



File Size/Quality

192kbps (better than CD), 256kbps (superb quality), 320kbps (highest quality)


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