Untold Stories is the collected memoirs, diaries, and notes of Alan Bennett, best known as the writer of The Madness of King George and a long-time presence in British theater. Though he rubbed elbows with his fair share of celebrities (Maggie Smith makes many fond appearances), Bennett has led a comparatively unremarkable life of work and travel. What is remarkable are his insights into art and history, his clever asides and misty remembrances. Bennett narrates his family's kindness and courage in the midst of illness; his shy, reclusive childhood; and a thousand careful details of growing up in wartime Britain in working class Leeds, proving that the life of the mind is just as interesting to read as the life of the rock star. In an age of florid memoirs that read like laundry lists of every kind of trauma and deprivation, Bennett's gentile observations are refreshingly smart and sane.