I should like a recco for a really funny

novel please.

Something that will make me laugh out loud.

Falbacks are Terry Pratchett and Tom Sharpe, because there are loads of them if you like that sort of thing.  

But [quibble mode on/]  they are not really novels as such, more light-hearted picaresques [/quibble mode off]  

I thought A Confederacy of Dunces was bloody awful.  I didn't find it funny at all.


Bill Bryson stuff is good.  I think Neither Here Nor There is funniest.

What Wang said

or if you want good chick lit I think Marian Keyes and Sophie kinsella are both pretty bloody hilarious 

Martin Amis is always good for a giggle. Have you read Lionel Asbo: State of England ?

Also I recently reread Clive James memoirs (the first one is called unreliable memoirs) and they are fantastically funny 

Bill Bryson -  Life and Times of the Thunderbolt Kid. I laughed very hard and long at this.

I have read Bill Bryson, but I was looking more for a novel.

I remember finding the Wimbledon Poisoner novels really laugh out loud funny.

The 100 year old man who climbed out a window is very funny.  great book

The Mapp & Lucia books by EF Benson - though I suspect you have already read them. If so, they are worth revisiting.

500 Mile Walkies by Mark Wallington tickled my funny bone back in the day (it's another travel memoir) but Goofle indicates he's gone on to write other stuff (including a novel).

I must also see if I still have my copy of The meaning of Liff which was a Douglas Adams/John Lloyd collaboration.

I've also just discovered that Monkey (children's TV series back in the day is based on a classic Chinese book Monkey by Wu Ch'eng-en but there is an abbreviated translation by Arthur Waley which is supposed to be 'fun'.

I found Elinor Oliphant really entertaining but I heard her voice as Clergs' so that might have added to the hilarity.

Soz clergs!

"Oh my God what a complete Aisling" is one of my favourite books in ages

I am not certain I would recommend it to you per se JC but I think you should read it (and you should like it!)

I actually don't know how anyone could find Elinor Oliphant funny i feel like it encapsulates why I wish I didn't exist BUT if you find it funny and it reminds you of me then I will choose to see that in a good light meh laugh

Meh did you find yourself having to mentally add "crivens!" and "big job!" to the actual text to get the full clergs voice?

By the way do you ever use "crivens".  I so would if I had a scotch accent.  I dont feel it could be carried off in hampshirian.

The Monkey King by Timothy Mo is probably the funniest out there

If it has to be a novel would second anything by Wodehouse as first point of call.

Do also try pretty much anything by David Sedaris if auto/semi-auto biographical stuff might fit the bill / Wodehouse not your thing. 'Me Talk Pretty One Day' and/or 'Dress Your Family In Corduroy And Denim' both good places to start.

Crivvens is actually not indigenous to the Edinburgh dialect. Nor indeed jings.


Not really a novel but I expect you have read all the Saki short stories? If not I think they would be right up your street. They are replete with extremely witty posh people.

Clergs do you ever say pech pech when tired or call somebody a fat gannet?

Gannet but not fat gannet

Not pech pech either

I'm not very vernacular tbh but did get edinburgh / Inverness in the NYT dialect quiz

Have u read Saki? Reckon you would like them too actually. If you do get them skip Reginald and start at the first one without him in.

in what way can a picaresque book possibly be distinguished from a novel?

plus it’s not even a noun

total bollox

and the whole point of a picaresque [book] is that it is a novel

which makes ur comment above even more silly

thanks, chums. 


Am am very familiar with Wodehouse (indeed I rather model myself on Aunt Dahlia) and Saki, and was looking for novels that I have not come across before. I don’t necessarily find the absurd funny. 

any of the Flashman novels (George Macdonald Fraser) or Wodehouse (of course)

Once you have read Saki, all Nancy Mitford and Evelyn Waugh, it is v hard to find anything modern as good. I second Tibor Fischer, The Thought Gang, or Journey to the End of the Room. And am coming back to Carrie Fisher's several half-autobiographical books and appreciating her more this time round.

Cynthia Heimel, Meghan Daum, Tim Kreider, all American journalists who have published books of essays on useful subjects like how to give a blow job, or not wanting to have children.

Hae you read the Diary of a Provincial Lady? that's v v v funny


Otherwise - wodehouse all the way.

Escers - I have actually on your recommendation a few years ago.

I am trying to broaden my chronological horizons though.

I'd prefer a funny British novel.

ok- modern dark humour - The Deaths by Mark Lawson or any of the Edward St Aubyn novels

I started reading St Aubyn, but had to stop as his life is depressingly similar to a good chum of mine.

'This is Going to Hurt'  Adam Kay, previously recommended here. Not a novel, a junior doctor's diary, I suspect it might be your style.

Douggie Adams and Tommy Sharpe aside the Martin Amis rec is a good one. The Information in particular has a handful of laugh out loud moments.