Red any funny books lately?

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    Have you ever read… a book that made you laugh out loud? It’s easy enough to find books that are interestig and gripping, but genuinely funny comedy novels are harder to come by.

    The first Red Dwarf book is really funny in places, the other ones less so. When I read them again recently, the BTL epilogue to the first book cracked me up (Lister’s toddler driving to the shops and Cat’s fantasy in general).

    I enjoyed Rob Grant’s Incompetence, Fat and Quanderhorn, but didn’t think they were great. Didn’t like Colony, but I only listened to the abridged audiobook and was already expecting not to like it for just being Red Dwarf again, so maybe it’s better than that.

    Here are some more books I’ve found really funny over the years:

    Douglas Adams – Hitchhiker’s 1-4 (not 5), Dirk Gently 1 (2 is just okay), Last Chance to See
    Steve Aylett – Lint
    Alan Partridge – I, Partridge & Nomad
    Viz generally
    Jon Ronson – Them, Lost at Sea, generally
    Garth Ennis – Adventures in the Rifle Brigade
    Dave Gorman & Danny Wallace – Are You Dave Gorman? (not so much their others)
    Lee and Herring – Fist of Fun book
    Charlie Brooker – TV Go Home, generally

    Maybe not LOL, but good novels that are funny too:

    Robert Sheckley – Dimension of Miracles (early sci-fi comedy)
    Neil Gaiman – Anansi Boys (the humour made it my favourite of his novels)
    China Mieville – Kraken (same as above)
    Kurt Vonnegut generally
    Thomas Pynchon – The Crying of Lot 49 (not read any others)
    Alan Moore – The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, Smax, maybe more

    Funny authors I’ve read that don’t really do it for me:

    Terry Pratchett
    P.G. Wodehouse
    Robert Rankin
    Over-the-top zany stuff like The Illuminatus! Trilogy and Bizarro fiction

    What’s hilarious that I / we all should read?



    I read Michael Chabon’s ‘Wonder Boys’ recently and thought that was pretty funny. More wryly amusing than laugh-out-loud funny, though.

    The recent Steven Moffat novelisation of Day Of The Doctor is really funny throughout, not that far in tone from the likes of Red Dwarf and Hitchhiker’s.

    For comics, I love a bit of Raymond Briggs and Alan Moore – both often quite deadpan but they both write some very funny dialogue especially. If you’ve never read Moore’s Skizz, DR & Quinch or Bojeffries, or his Future Shocks short stories from 2000AD, they’re all worth a look. And for Raymond Briggs I really like When The Wind Blows, which is heartbreaking but also features some very darkly absurd humour.



    Read/seen-the-animated-film-of & enjoyed most of those, others can go on the list. I can’t differentiate most of Alan Moore’s 2000AD stuff in my memory, since I binged it around the same time, but wished I’d grown up with it.



    I don’t think any book has had me laughing as much as I, Partridge. It was quite embarrassing to read it when around other people.



    I loved I, Partridge but never read Nomad – is it as good?



    Nomad didn’t stand out to me as much, maybe just because it was the second one, or maybe it’s less quotable and more in the subtleties and running gags, like refusing to ever mention his assistant by name. It’s got a similar feel to the Scissored Isle TV special, since it’s outdoorsy and was probably written mostly/all by the Super Gibbons Bros with no Iannucci.

    I’ll have to actually read the books with my eyes one day, but having the option of an in-character Coogan audiobook is irresistible.


    Plastic Percy

    Viz is the thing that makes me laugh out loud the most. I spent a few minutes just laughing at their ‘Ted Rogers in the 25th Century’ strip the other day.



    I never think to read Viz regularly. The last time I read an annual a couple of years ago, I was annihilated by this:


    Taiwan Tony

    Viz is great.
    Frankie Boyle’s books make me laugh a lot because they’re often just jokes from his stand up.

    Novels, though. I laughed a lot reading Time For Bed by David Baddiel. I laughed a bit at Flann O’Brien’s The Third Policeman. Portnoy’s Complaint had lots of very funny moments. Catch 22 is funny.
    I’ve not read any Jasper Fforde, but want to.
    I’ve got a copy of the Finkler Question by Jacob Howardson to read, but don’t want to.
    I liked reading the Gobbler by Adrian Edmondson.
    Woody Allen’s short fiction is very funny.
    I seem to remember The Gun Seller by Hugh Laurie being good, too.

    My wife read a book as a teenager that really made her laugh: Lost In Music by Giles Smith.



    I’ve read all the Woody Allen books and enjoyed them, the more recent one less than the old ones. Never seen any of his films though, put off by him being in them.

    I enjoyed and empathised with Baddiel’s book as a teenager with self-induced, drinks-Coke-all-day insomnia. I started his second (Diana-themed?) one, but gave up because it was serious or something.

    Not read the others, always meant to read The Third Policeman and will check out the others eventually. Thanks!



    David Nobbs’ Reggie Perrins are some of the funniest novels I’ve read. Quite a bit darker in tone than the sitcom but properly funny. Also recommend The Stench of Honolulu by Jack Handey, which is pretty much a string of his Deep Thoughts type jokes disguised as a novel, and is all the better for that. And I’m enjoying rereading Popcorn by Ben Elton after I found it in a drawer in the caravan I was staying in last week.


    Plastic Percy

    This never fails to make me laugh out loud.


    Flap Jack

    Any of you folks read Giant Days? Because if not you totally try it out.


    Flap Jack

    That is to say, you *should* try it out. I didn’t mean to order anyone around there.



    Three Men in a Boat by Jerome K Jerome is the funniest book I’ve ever read.



    The funniest book series I’ve read (outside of obvious ones like Dwarf and Discworld) are these 2 different “choose your own adventure” series on kindle – one is Choose o Matic, which is just a bunch of silly adventures in zombie futures, superhero cities, dinosaur zoos and spaceships, and the other is “Whatley Tupper” about a college janitor who gets pulled into adventures with the physics prof, who uses him as a guinea pig, putting him in wormholes and time machines and stuff – VERY Dwarf ish humor in that series. I’ve never seen either of them in print books, but they were quite cheap on kindle.

    I read that “Scoundrels” last year too which was a bit of a hoot (bit gross and slightly homophobic at times though).

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