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We have no contributing diarist this week, so we'll have an open forum instead. Those of you who have read a book that changed your life and would like to contribute a diary, please kosmail me! I have a template that makes it very easy to write a diary. You need only write three paragraphs and the template tells you exactly what to put in each one. Just think--contribute a diary and you may find yourself on the "Rec" list!

Last week Kossack exlrrp treated us to a delightful diary on a book that changed his life—The Golf Omnibus by P. G. Wodehouse. Those of us who also enjoy the writing of the gentle, affable, often hilarious “Plum” had a field day discussing The Golf Omnibus and other humorous works.  That made me think—which book made you laugh out loud as you read it?  Follow me below the orange pretzel and we’ll talk.

Right off the bat I can think of two books that still make me grin whenever I think of their titles or a passage that lingers in my memory.

One of them is Stella Gibbons’ Cold Comfort Farm. Perhaps some of you have seen the film or the miniseries shown on PBS years ago.  I chortled all through that book—just couldn’t believe I was having such a good time.  I don’t think I’ll ever get over the parrot!

The second book is Our Man in Havana by Graham Greene.  Like Somerset Maugham, Greene seems to be out of fashion but his books are well written and often intense. Our Man in Havana is a departure from his usual oeuvre—he seems to have written it tongue in cheek.  It’s full of chortles, and I swear to this day Mel Brooks must have read it because of a particular scene in Brooks’ movie, “Spaceballs.”

Marion Chesney’s Georgian romances often made me explode with laughter when I sat up in bed reading them, much to Dearly Beloved’s displeasure:  he wanted to go to sleep, not listen to me having hysterics. Just a few weeks ago I read Christmas Crumble, a story by Marion Chesney in her mystery writer-persona of M. C. Beaton and laughed so hard I almost fell out of the recliner.

All right, enough about the books that make me laugh out loud.  What about YOU?  What makes you chuckle, chortle, or scream with laughter when you’re reading?  Finish up your cup of hazelnut-flavored hot chocolate, wipe those crumbs of warm flaky pastry from your luscious lips, open them, and tell us about your favorite funny books!

Originally posted to Readers and Book Lovers on Fri Jan 18, 2013 at 05:00 AM PST.

Also republished by DKOMA.

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