I think it's the hardest thing to make people laugh-out-loud when reading a book. Nothing makes me happier than getting a review from a reader that tells me I have achieved just that. It’s the reason why I write. Despite the fact my latest book, The Last Laugh, has a tragic premise I hope there are still many moments that will hit the comedy spot and bring the ‘Laugh-out-loud’ reviews come rolling in. Funny books don’t seem to get much critical acclaim either but believe me, they are just as hard to write as any other and deserve high praise. So here are some of my favourite books that gave me my last laughs!
1) Spectacles by Sue Perkins – She’s funny on the TV and she’s funny on paper. Her life story is surprising, touching and often hilarious. If it’s possible, I love her even more than I did before, after reading this.
2) US by David Nicholls – I like David’s humour in all his books but I think in particular this one is so well observed and nuanced. Clever funny – but not too clever!
3) Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine by Gail Honeyman – Eleanor’s unique character brings it’s own unique humour. Love, Love, Love the Top Gear gag!!!
4) Behind the Scenes at the Museum by Kate Atkinson – I have been very late coming to the genius that is Kate Atkinson mostly because I had pegged her in the ‘too literary’ category. How wrong I was and I so did not expect the witty one-liners. Surprise laughs – always the best!
5) The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion – another great character with some truly epic lines. Don’s view on life is brilliantly written and sympathically handled.
6) Eligibility by Curtis Sittenfeld – this modern update of Pride and Prejudice is both clever and very funny. How Curtis adapts Jane Austen to modern culture is awe inspiring and hilarious.
7) The Extra Ordinary Life of Frank Derrick Aged 81 by J.B Morrison – the story of an old man that made me laugh and cry – and the writer used to be in Carter the Unstoppable Sex Machine – so it must be good!
8) Yes Please – Amy Poehler – I have often read autobiographies by funny people and been disappointed by how unfunny they are. This does not disappoint. A great account of her rise to fame but also full of laughs.
9) A Spool of Blue Thread by Anne Tyler – admittedly there are very few laughs in this book but occasionally there is a diamond that comes as a lovely comedy surprise hidden in a great story.
10) Tom Gates by Liz Pichon – I read these with my son and now my daughter is reading them. Not all children’s book have to be worthy or dare I say it – magical!!! A real boy doing real stuff - including fart jokes – love it!