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Thread: Funniest Book Ever Read

  1. #61
    closed Bysshe's Avatar
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    Feb 2006
    Anything by P.G Wodehouse is always uplifting, and I think most of the Jeeves stories have made me laugh. Then there are a few Evelyn Waugh novels (Vile Bodies, mainly - and certain parts of Brideshead Revisited). Oscar Wilde, of course...

    And then there's Bridget Jones's Diary.

  2. #62
    Inquisitive bloke ClaesGefvenberg's Avatar
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    Feb 2006
    Eskilstuna, Sweden


    The Hitchiker's Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams....

    Hanlon's Razor: "Never attribute to malice that which can be adequately explained by stupidity."

  3. #63
    Registered User Boris239's Avatar
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    Mar 2006
    New York
    J.C. Jerom "Three men in a boat" is probably my favorite.
    Short stories by O'Henry, Zoschenko(Russian author), Max Beerbohm
    Hasek's "Good soldier Svejk" is bloody hilarious. The Russian equivalent is Voynovich's "Adventures of Chonkin"

  4. #64
    Registered User literaturerocks's Avatar
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    Jun 2006
    united states
    the jungle books by rudyard kipling made me laugh last night
    "Life is a journey, not a destination"

    Currently Reading: Catcher In The Rye, Siddartha

  5. #65
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    Jul 2006
    Both Don Quixote and A Confederacy of Dunces are hilarious.

  6. #66
    The Eternal Fool Union Jack's Avatar
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    Oct 2005
    Seseame Street
    Faust, Goethe.
    "I don't care what you believe in, just believe in it."
    Shepherd Book, Serenity.

    "The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, but wiser people so full of doubts."
    -Bertrand Russell

    "The no-mind not-thinks no-thoughts about no-things"
    -The Buddha

  7. #67
    precious... subterranean's Avatar
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    Dec 2003
    KÝbenhavn for the present
    Blog Entries
    Last one that gave me big smiles: Lady Windermere's Fan by Wilde. Hillarious

    "there are people in the world so hungry that God can not appear to them except in the form of bread"

    Mahatma Gandhi

  8. #68
    weer mijn koekjestrommel Schokokeks's Avatar
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    Aug 2005
    blub blub blub!
    I laughed a lot when reading To kill a mockingbird by Harper Lee recently. The children's perspective is just too hilarious A great book.
    "Where mind meets matter, both should woo!"
    Currently reading:
    * Paradise Lost by John Milton

  9. #69
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    Jun 2006
    puddinhead wilson by mark twain

  10. #70
    Registered User Kameo's Avatar
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    Jul 2006
    Kiev, UA
    Bulgakov's short story, Heart of a Dog, if simply for the dog's 'human' name, Polygraph Polygraphovich and the greatest thing is when someone gets his name wrong and calls him Telegraph Telegraphovich.
    Im glad that Heart of a Dog makes you laugh but imho it serious story enough. Try Ilf & Petrovs "The Golden calf". Guess you`ll be pleased.

    Mark Twain and Ilf & Petrov are favourite
    "The reading of all good books is like a conversation with all the finest men of past centuries."
    Rene Descartes

  11. #71
    Two Gun Kid Idril's Avatar
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    Apr 2006
    North Dakota
    Quote Originally Posted by Kameo
    Im glad that Heart of a Dog makes you laugh but imho it serious story enough.
    I realize it's a serious book and he's making some very serious points but there are humorous moments...such as the mix-up with the name. That's one of the things I enjoy about Bulgakov, in the midst of these very serious and philosophical novels and stories there are these moments, a phrase or a conversation or a scene that just kills you because they are so profoundly funny. He can go back and forth between farce and profound so seemlessly.

  12. #72
    Artist and Bibliophile stlukesguild's Avatar
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    Jul 2006
    The USA... or thereabouts
    Blog Entries
    Midsummer's Night Dream- Shakespeare
    Tristam Shandy- Laurence Sterne
    Don Quixote- Cervantes
    Myra Breckenridge- Gore Vidal
    Miss Lonelyhearts- Nathaniel West
    Tin Drum- Gunter Grass
    Lolita- Nabokov
    The Confederacy of Dunces- Toole
    The Physicists- Friederick Durrenmatt
    As I Lay Dying- Faulkner
    various short stories- Flannery O'Conner
    Master and Margarita- Bulgakov
    The Fetishist- Michel Tournier
    various tales from the Decammeron- Boccaccio
    Tartuffe- Moliere
    Confessions- Rousseau
    A Modest Proposal- Swift
    various short stories- Franz Kafka
    Mason and Dixon- Thomas Pynchon
    Everything is Illuminated- Jonathan Safron Foer
    various short stories- Tomasso Landolfi (especially Gogol's Wife)

    I don't doubt there are many more... and there are many books that can inspire laughter followed by sadness or seriousness like the graveyard scene in Hamlet or any number of the books in this list. I might also note that many of the books on my list are undoubtedly of a rather dark humor (As I Lay Dying) or more of a dead-pan irony (Kafka) than an easy guffaw.
    Beware of the man with just one book. -Ovid
    The man who doesn't read good books has no advantage over the man who can't read them.- Mark Twain
    My Blog: Of Delicious Recoil

  13. #73
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    May 2006
    Heller - Catch 22 (funniest book I've ever read)
    Safran Foer - Everything Is Illuminated as well (although it seems that ultimately the book is funny as an attempt to hide the fact that it's tragic)
    Eggers - A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius
    Dostoevsky - The Brothers Karamazov (mostly serious, but the one part that made me laugh was Madame Khohklakov's typical ramblings of an old woman; we've all heard old women going on and on and on exactly like her)
    Oscar Wilde - The Importance of Being Earnest
    Samuel Beckett - Waiting for Godot
    Federico Andahazi - The Anatomist
    Bulgakov - The Heart of a Dog
    Gogol - Diary of a Madman, The Nose
    Nabokov - Lolita
    Shakespeare - A Midsummer Night's Dream, The Tempest (the beast with two backs is hilarious)
    Voltaire - Candide

    I can't say I found Miss Lonelyhearts or As I Lay Dying particularly funny books, though. Not sure where you found the humor, both of them seemed to be racked with utter hopelessness.

    Quote Originally Posted by faintingink
    i also find waiting for godot to be seemingly funny for reasons i really can't explain.
    What's hard to explain? There's some great quotes.

    VLADIMIR. You should have been a poet.
    ESTRAGON. I was (Gesture at his rags.) Isn't that obvious?

    Or how about Vladimir saying, after a full minute or two of silence, "That passed the time."

    How about Vladimir rushing offstage to urinate? Or Lucky's "thinking"? Or the hat-switching routine? There's lots of humor in Waiting for Godot, although you have to see it rather than just read it to really appreciate the humor in it.
    "In the sunset of dissolution, everything is illuminated by the aura of nostalgia, even the guillotine."
    - Milan Kundera, The Unbearable Lightness of Being

  14. #74
    Registered User Woland's Avatar
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    Apr 2006
    Most of these have been mentioned but Ill second them

    Master and Margarita
    Heart of a Dog
    Good Omens (Monty Python meets the apocolypse)
    The Importance of Being Earnest
    Twelfth Night (Malvolio and Feste)
    Comedy of Errors
    Tartuffe is brilliant
    "Well, God give them wisdom that have it; and those that are fools, let them use their talents."

    - Feste, Twelfth Night

    "...till human voices wake us and we drown."

    - Eliot

  15. #75
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    Aug 2004
    And to My Nephew Albert I Leave the Island What I Won Off Fatty Hagan in a Poker Game by David Forrest. I think this book may be out of print but grab this book if you can find it. It's slim like a novella but every page is hilarious, and the title just brings a smile to my face. The story begins with, you've guessed it, Albert and a tiny island off of England. The island becomes world news when the Brits, Americans and Russians all begin to buy a piece of the island.

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