Posts Tagged ‘humor’


Books I failed out of last week

January 11, 2016

Four and Twenty Beds, by Nancy Casteel Vogel.

I kind of wanted someone to read this for me so that I didn’t have to, but eventually I decided I didn’t care that much. It’s from the fifties and it’s about a Californian couple who, with their two children, move to a small town to run a motel. I stopped reading just after they took possession of the motel, figuring that at worst there was going to be an endless series of uncomfortable disasters and at best I was going to continue not finding the book particularly funny.

Good References, by E.J. Rath.

So, like. 1921. Stenographer can’t get a job because she has no references. Ends up taking a job under another girl’s name, as social secretary to a young man who has no interest in society. What could be more fun than that? Well, almost anything, as it turns out. The young man is profoundly unsympathetic, and the friend posing as his valet is worse. Everyone is lying to his aunt, and she ended up being the only person I had any sympathy for. I have very little patience for books about people getting themselves in increasingly worse scrapes by lying, and I got through exactly four chapters before getting fed up.


Ruggles of Red Gap

June 8, 2012

So, there’s this movie, Ruggles of Red Gap. It’s from 1935 and it stars Charles Laughton, and I’ve seen it a couple of times and it’s pretty great. And it turns out that it was adapted from a book, also called Ruggles of Red Gap, and that the book, written by Harry Leon Wilson and published in 1915, is in the public domain. I was pretty excited to find out about that.

And it’s…well, it’s good. Really funny. The movie is more gentle; the book has a touch of that thing where you feel like the author may not have much love or respect for any of his characters. If it was a television show, I wouldn’t be able to watch it. As a book, I like it. Parts of it are hilarious. But I never entirely warmed to it because there was nothing warm in it. Read the rest of this entry ?