Posts Tagged With: funny

The Best a Man Can Get by John O’Farrell

Michael Adams loves his wife and his two children very much.  But he also loves his own space, and that’s why he spends a lot of time in his flat which he shares with three other men, where he can be as lazy as he likes, do the odd bit of work, and then go home to his family when he wants to spend time with them.  It’s not that he doesn’t like being with them – it’s just that he finds being a father is so [i]demanding[/i].  Michael thinks that his arrangement allows him the best of both worlds…but his wife Catherine doesn’t know about his other life.  She thinks that when he is away from home, he is working hard earning money to support his family.  It all works fine, until inevitably Catherine finds out what he’s really been doing when he’s not at home…

I loved this book.  Told from Michael’s point of view, it was very believeable and touching – and it was also laugh out loud funny, with a good giggle on almost every page.  The funny moments are mainly due to Michael’s attempts to keep his secret life hidden from his family, and there are many near misses.

Although Michael behaves in a less than admirable way, he is a very likeable character.  He is also very well drawn, as are the other characters including the peripheral ones.  There are many touching moments, especially where Michael examines the reasons why he feels the way he does about fatherhood.

His wife is also a hugely likeable character, and her sense of frustration at her husband’s absences (even when she believes that he is genuinely working) are very well depicted.

The writing flows easily and kept me turning the pages.  It certainly caused me to stay up late on a few nights, because I kept thinking “just a few more pages.”  The story had a surprising twist at the end, which I genuinely did not see coming.

I’ve read – and enjoyed – John O’Farrell’s non-fiction before now, and this was the first time I had read his fiction.  It certainly won’t be the last.  I now intend to seek out all other books by this author!  Highly recommended.

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Moving Pictures by Terry Pratchett

Synopsis from Google Books:

Discworld’s pesky alchemists are up to their old tricks again. This time, they’ve discovered how to get gold from silver — the silver screen that is. Hearing the siren call of Holy Wood is one Victor Tugelbend, a would-be wizard turned extra. He can’t sing, he can’t dance, but he can handle a sword (sort of), and now he wants to be a star. So does Theda Withel, an ambitious ingénue from a little town (where else?) you’ve probably never heard of.

But the click click of moving pictures isn’t just stirring up dreams inside Discworld. Holy Wood’s magic is drifting out into the boundaries of the universes, where raw realities, the could-have-beens, the might-bes, the never-weres, the wild ideas are beginning to ferment into a really stinky brew. It’s up to Victor and Gaspode the Wonder Dog (a star if ever one was born!) to rein in the chaos and bring order back to a starstruck Discworld. And they’re definitely not ready for their close-up!

This is the tenth book in the Discworld series, and in my opinion, one of the best, alongside Mort, which was hilarious.

In this adventure we see the creation of Moving Pictures, basically films. This is Pratchett’s take on the creation of the movie world. Set in Holy Wood, the alchemists have created something dangerous and enchanting.  People rush to Holy Wood from all over the Discworld to seek fame and fortune – but something is not right. As Victor gets drawn into the fray, him and his co-star Ginger find out the secret danger that is Holy Wood, and with the aid of Laddie and Gaspode, a talking dog, they have to save the day.

This book is incredibly funny. Pratchett is subtle and sly with his humour and mocking of Hollywood. We see the characters chasing fickle dreams and destruction. As ever, the books are engaging and exciting. There was adventure and some heart stopping moments. Pratchett does not fail to catch the imagination and like with the other books I was quickly and easily transported to the Discworld.

As in the other books, Death features. He seems to be the most regular character, and as always he made me laugh. I loved it when he was in the bar drinking, very funny. Gaspode was probably my favourite of the new characters. His dry humour and sarcasm were great reading. There were so many funny characters andstory lines in this book. I loved the troll, Rock and his aim for fame, and the troll Ditritus and how he tried to date Ruby, and I think the funniest part of the book for me was when the senior wizards were sneaking out of the university like naughty students.

This is a great book. I highly recommend it. There is action, film, adventure, love, trolls, dwarfs, talking animals, wizards and Death, alongside fire, hidden cities and Dibler, the man always out to make a fast profit. I can’t think of a complaint for this book, I thoroughly enjoyed it.

9/10

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The Light Fantastic by Terry Pratchett

Synopsis from Amazon:

‘What shall we do?’ said Twoflower.
‘Panic?’ said Rincewind hopefully. He always held that panic was the best means of survival. When the very fabric of time and space are about to be put through the wringer – in this instance by the imminent arrival of a very large and determinedly oncoming meteorite – circumstances require a very particular type of hero. Sadly what the situation does not need is a singularly inept wizard, still recovering from the trauma of falling off the edge of the world. Equally it does not need one well-meaning tourist and his luggage which has a mind of its own. Which is a shame because that’s all there is…

This is a funny fantasy book which follows The Colour of Magic in the Discworld Series by Pratchett, and is possibly better! There were fights, crazy characters and some extremely funny one-liners. Although the second book in the series I think it is written in a way that means you could read it as a stand-alone book and still understand and follow the storyline, and still enjoy the book.

I love the way Pratchett writes, drawing you in and he is so descriptive and clever that you feel like you are really there. I had no trouble imagining the red star, the trolls or the luggage. He is a fascinating writer and I have found myself just wanting to read more of his work.

In this book my favourite character was either Cohan the Barbarian or the Luggage. Both were hunourous, the former with his attitude and one-liners and the latter with his presence and response to events.

My only complaint was that Death did not feature enough! I thought the ending was a bit sad but realistic. I just really enjoyed this book.

9/10

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Getting Rid of Matthew by Jane Fallon

I was drawn to this book by the cover:

I think it those red shoes in contrast with the blue tie, it definitely draws the eye, and I am glad it did.

What to do if Matthew, your secret lover of the past four years, finally decides to leave his wife Sophie and their two daughters and move into your flat, just when you’re thinking that you might not want him anymore …Plan A – Stop shaving your armpits. And your bikini line. Tell him you have a moustache that you wax every six weeks. Stop having sex with him. Pick holes in the way he dresses. Don’t brush your teeth. Or your hair. Or pluck out the stray hag-whisker that grows out of your chin. Buy incontinence pads and leave them lying around.Plan B – Accidentally on purpose bump into his wife Sophie. Give yourself a fake name and identity. Befriend Sophie. Actually begin to really like Sophie. Snog Matthew’s son (who’s the same age as you by the way. You’re not a paedophile). Buy a cat and give it a fake name and identity. Befriend Matthew’s children. Unsuccessfully watch your whole plan go absolutely horribly wrong. “Getting Rid of Matthew” isn’t as easy as it seems, but along the way Helen will forge an unlikely friendship, find real love and realize that nothing ever goes exactly to plan …

This was a good book. Helen quickly realizes she does not want Matthew and her ways to get rid of him are quirky and funny. This book was irresistible, hard to put down. Every time I did stop reading I was dying to know what was going to happen next.

Helen befriends the ex-wife and forms a lovely friendship. This was the highlight of the book for me, and when her true identity was revealed I nearly cried. Their friendship moved me so much, and made me grateful for my friends.

I didn’t like Matthew’s character, I could see why she wanted rid of him! He was slimy, a liar and weak and needy, plus old, not attractive. However, his character was well written and I did find myself disliking him and laughing at him.

I had a few problems with this book. The first is how long Helen’s secret life panned out, I didn’t think that was very realistic. The second was the way the children were written. They are aged 12 and 10 but to be honest it seemed like they were in their teens. And the final thing was I did not like the over-use of bad language.

Overall, I enjoyed this book and was happy to overlook my complaints. This is a great, fun chick lit book.

8/10

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