Funny Books?

I read Douglas Adam’s “Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy” book and the books that follow it.

I think it’s sometimes difficult to find books that are funny.

Any recommendations for funny books that you like?

If you liked those, I can heartily recommend the (very large) Discworld series by Terry Pratchett - quite hilarious!

Pratchett is great, and he collaborated with Neil Gaiman for Good Omens, possibly the funniest book about the biblical apocalypse there will ever be.

You might like PG Wodehouse too.

I’m currently reading Jeeves and the Feudal Spirit by PG Wodehouse. The man was a comic genius and should have won the Nobel Prize for Literature. I love Wodehouse!

I thought Winterdance, by Gary Paulsen(sp) was pretty funny, but not a lot of people understand the Iditarod enough to get why some parts are funny.

Jean Shepard, whose book “In God We Trust, all Others Pay Cash” along with his earlier books, was the basis for the Christmas Story movie, has me rolling on the floor with laughter.

James Thurber is still the greatest master of the understated humor narrative and I appreciate him even more, with all the in-laws I have in Columbus OH.

Robert Benchley, Saki (H H Munro) and Stephen Leacock are humorists of the 20s & 30s whose work still resonates and induces hearty laughter (with a huge dose of the creeps in Saki’s case). I also endorse Jeeves, whose world, like that of Saki’s characters, has now disappeared, but still provides accurate social commentary on that era, place and class.

I use laughter in the therapeutic sense, as prescribed by doctors as a cure for everything from depression to cancer, and it sure works. The most severe cases will respond to watching old Marx Brothers movies.

Jean Shepherd’s Wanda Hickey’s Night of Golden Memories and Other Disasters is the one puzzleannie is referring to. It is a laugh-out-loud-er.

Jane Smiley’s Moo is a very funny academia satire if that is your taste.

Christopher Buckley’s Thank You For Smoking is current affairs satire as is Florence of Arabia. No one escapes his barbs.

The mystery novels of Carl Hiaasen are quite funny also. Be warned! They are like eating potato chips–you can’t stop at one.

Christopher Buckley’s books are hilarious and I highly recommend them. I don’t like Jane Smiley. I’ve tried, but I can’t get her at all.

One of the funniest books I ever read was a sci-fi parody called **Star Smashers of the Galaxy Rangers **by Harry Harrison. It’s a take off on the space operas of E.E. (Doc) Smith.

Another very funny book is an old one called **The Barefoot Boy With Cheek **by Max Shulman. This is a satire of campus life and is kind of dated, but still funny.

I’m so glad to read all these recommendations. I have a long reading list, but that’s alright.

I try to pace myself when I read, but somehow I seem to go through a book quickly. Right now I’m in the mood for funny books so I’m glad you guys & gals have so many suggestions. Thanks everyone.

I think PJ O’Rourke is very funny. His book, All the Troubles In the World, had me rolling w/ laughter.

You could try Adams’ two “Dirk Gently” detective novels (the first one is called Dirk Gently’s Detective Agency and the second one is called The Long Dark Teatime of the Soul). The first one has Oxford dons, an “electronic monk” from an alien planet who goes around believing things, a murder (of course), an alien spaceship, a “Next Generation ‘All Good Things’” type threat to human history, and an explanation for the absence of the second part of Coleridge’s poem Kubla Khan and the presence of Back (in the timeline we currently inhabit). The best thing about the sequel is the title, but we do get to see the Norse god Thor wandering around followed by a Coke machine, which is pretty funny.


My favorite pick-me-ups have been mentioned–Pratchett, Wodehouse, and Hiaasen. I loved the Dirk Gently novels too!

Catcher in the Rye (J.D. Salinger) is a funny book. It really is! Or at least I thought so when I was 17.

Don’t let the Pigeon Drive the bus.


There isn’t an age limit, right? :smiley:

Holidays in Hell is his best. For the other side of the aisle, try “Molly Ivins Can’t Say That, Can She?”

I strongly, no AGGRESSIVELY recommend Chesterton’s “Napoleon of Notting Hill.” If there’s a funnier character in literature than Auberon Quin, I can’t think who it might be.

Bridget Jones’s Diary had me laughing until I cried. I resisted reading it, because I was sure it would be dumb, but it really surprised me.

There is cursing in it though, and sex (though not explicit, because it’s just journal entries) so it’s not for everyone. But it is funny. Her train of thought during her five minute hysterical pregnancy scare is priceless.

I find a lot of Charles Dickens to be very humorous, in a droll, sly way. Not laugh out loud funny though.

Mark Twain! Dairy of Adam and Eve is excellent - poignant and hilarious. Or his essays on why he hates the German language, or James Fennimore Cooper :wink:

“Who’s Afraid of Beowulf?” by Tom Holt.

(An archaeologist digs up an ancient Viking ship and wakes the warriors buried with it. It’s about their misadventures in our age,)

I just put that on my extremely long reading list, lol, it sounds interest.

A couple of others women might like (they’re a bit girly for most guys)–Janet Evanovich and Jennifer Crusie. Hilarious!!

The Princess Bride is the funniest book I’ve read. I can’t remember the authors name (sorry), but it should be easy to find.

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