Perhaps some of you don’t know that over the last several years I have really been taken to reading and really have accepted 2 genres as my chosen genres to read. 1) Sci Fi and 2) comedic fiction. I guess a third would be biographies or memoirs. And then 4th poetry. I also have developed a curious collection of signed books. It may sound like I am boasting and perhaps I am, but I’ve started to really love books.

Anyway todays task is to give you my Top 5 comedic fiction recommendations. You’re welcome

5. A Confederacy of Dunces by John Kennedy Toole

This book is pretty controversial. It is also not a book for people who want like-able characters or clear resolution. The way John Kennedy Toole wrote his characters is not only funny but also deeply darkly human. It’s a dark comedy, and I don’t love sad stories, and this story is sad in the sense that the main characters life is tragic, not in an empathetic way, but in a self-defeating way. The book surprises you in how overbearing a character can be surrounded by other people with dark problems, but tonally it made me laugh a good bit. I read it in January of 2019 while I was a chaplain so maybe I had a greater tolerance for dark things.

4. The Ascent of Rum Doodle by W. E. Bowman

I many ways this is a perfect book for me. Just under 200 pages, very funny, about a hike gone wrong. The characters are great, the repetition is hilarious and the cirucmstances the characters get themselves into are preposterous. The best part of the book is where one of the main characters describes all the fiances of his fellow hiking compadres. It is very lighthearted and a very easy read.

3. To Say Nothing of the Dog by Connie Willis

It is hard to entirely put this in best comedy only because it as an extremely great Sci-Fi book as well in regards to time travel. The main character is very endearing and the book is an homage to Three Men in a Boat which is also on my list. It won the Hugo Award for Sci-Fi but I laughed so much while reading it and had a smile throughout the book. There is a lovely cat in it who keeps reappearing as well. If you want Sci-Fi and comedy this is a great book. I read this book at the recommendation of Josh Ziefle. He really has me nailed down for books to read, and I love it.

2. Three Men in a Boat/Three Men on a Bummel by Jerome K Jerome

I read these books in March of 2020 during actually a pretty depressing and isolating time in my life. Despite that I loved these books. They were hilarious. I would literally look forward to reading them after 10-11 hour days of work coming home at night in the middle of winter to get a good laugh. Also these books were written in 1889/1890’s and still hold up as very funny so I think that says a lot.

1. Code of the Woosters/Summer Lightning/The Mating Season by PG Wodehouse

I will be honest. I love just about every PG Wodehouse book I’ve read. They are all funny and lighthearted. They are all pretty short and easy to read. The Jeeves and Wooster books will probably always be my favorite. Bertie Wooster is one of my favorite written characters ever and the mildly innocent trouble he finds himself in always makes me smile. I have been reccommending Wodehouse for years and hope to eventually read all of the Jeeves Wooster tales again in chronological order of when they were written.

That’s my top 5! Here are some runners up: Old Possums Book of Practical Cats (a poetry collection) by TS Eliot, Lucky Jim by Kingsley Amis (read in college), Cold Comfort Farm by Stella Gibbons (read it for book club, no one liked it or finished it, also has a sci-fi element)

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