Friday Five: Funny books

We all need a good laugh every now and then, particularly in January which can be a depressing month after all the excitement of the holidays in December. Here, we bring you five of our best comedy picks from our catalogues to boost your mood.

Good Omens by Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman

A collaboration by two of the UK’s most popular authors, Good Omens is a comedy about the son of Satan’s birth and the attempts of angels to sabotage the coming of the End Times. Full of fantasy and humour, Good Omens will suck you into a wonderful and witty world.

The Life and Opinions of Tristram Shandy, Gentleman by Laurence Sterne

First published in 1759, Laurence Sterne’s humorous novel The Life and Opinions of Tristram Shandy, Gentleman has stood up to the test of time. The novel is supposedly Sterne’s narration of his own life story. With a large cast of hilarious supporting characters and a tendency towards verbosity and silliness, the novel ridicules solemnity, making it a perfect read for a gloomy January.

Then We Came to the End by Joshua Ferris

It may not sound like a laugh a minute, but Then We Came to the End about the contemporary American workplace is hailed as one of the funniest contemporary novels around. Ferris pokes fun at the minutiae of working in the office environment and how, even when you hate everybody, it can be devastating when it’s time to leave.

Three Men in a Boat (To Say Nothing of the Dog) by Jermome K Jerome

Jerome K Jerome’s account of his escapades in Three Men in a Boat while on a boating holiday up the river Thames are some of the funniest memoirs you will read. Full of fresh and witty jokes, the book follows three men and a fictional dog. It was a best-seller in its time, and is enduringly popular today.

Cold Comfort Farm by Stella Gibbons

This 1932 novel is a hilarious send up of the heavy, romanticised depictions of the countryside so popular at the time of Gibbons’ writing. The novel follows Flora Poste, who moves in with her distant relatives in Sussex and tries to turn their lifestyles around. Full of strange characters, unexpected plot twists, word-play and jokes, Cold Comfort Farm is arguably one of the best British comedies.

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Then We Came to the End by Joshua Ferris

It may not sound like a laugh a minute, but Then We Came to the End about the contemporary American workplace is hailed as one of the funniest contemporary novels around. Ferris pokes fun at the minutiae of working in the office environment and how, even when you hate everybody, it can be devastating when it’s time to leave.