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Anna Lefler's All-Time Favorite Funny Reading List by Anna Lefler

by Anna Lefler, posted to Books

Tired of Tolstoy? Fried on Franzen? It's summertime - lighten up, already! Here are some of my very favorite funny books. For summertime...or anytime. Enjoy!


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One Last Thing Before I Go

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The bestselling author of This Is Where I Leave You returns with a...more

I love Jonathan Tropper's style. He consistently gives readers an experience that is both originally funny and unexpectedly poignant (but never saccharine). This is his latest and I gobbled it up like a truffle.

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THE PLEASURE OF MY COMPANY by Steve Martin

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I'm a HUGE fan of all things Steve Martin, and this novella is right there at the top of that heap. Funny, soulful and unexpectedly tender, THE PLEASURE OF MY COMPANY is one that I re-read every year, and not just because it's set in my neighborhood.

onlectus: I loved this one!

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Let's Pretend This Never Happened: (A Mostly True Memoir)

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For fans of Tina Fey and David Sedaris—Internet star Jenny Lawson,...more

In true Jenny Lawson style, her debut book is sparkling, scorching and hilarious.

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THIS IS WHERE I LEAVE YOU by Jonathan Tropper

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Oh, man, oh, man, I LOVE this book. Hilarious but real, Jonathan Tropper zings arrow after arrow right into the heart of the inescapable cycle of human existence: repeatedly effing things up and then trying to fix them again. A thoroughly entertaining and surprisingly moving read.

Larissa: I loved the Book of Joe, will check this one out. Thanks for the recommendation! :)

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Starting from Happy: A Novel

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While waiting in line for apple pie at a party, Imogene Gilfeather, a...more

Suggested by Penelope Poet

This is the funniest book I've read since "Me Talk Pretty One Day." It's written in "chaplettes." Wondering what that is? Read it and find out.

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EARLY BIRD: A MEMOIR OF PREMATURE RETIREMENT by Rodney Rothman

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After Rodney Rothman lost his job as a TV comedy writer at the age of 28, he decided that - since he would eventually end up in Florida in a retirement village anyway - he might as well go ahead and move into one right away. So he did. This collection of his experiences there comprise a tender, raucous and always entertaining book.

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Mini Skirts and Laughter Lines by Carol E Wyer

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A very funny book in the form of blog entries about a woman facing 50...more

Suggested by SkinnyScoop Member

I read this on holiday just after it came out. I couldn't put it down and laughed all the way through. I noticed someone else recommended it here so I thought I would too.

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Mini Skirts and Laughter Lines by Carol E Wyer

amazon.co.uk

Murder, insanity or another glass of wine. These ar ethe choices...more

Suggested by SkinnyScoop Member

This is one of the funniest books I have read from a debut author who shows much talent.

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I'm Kind of a Big Deal: And Other Delusions of Adequacy

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WARNING TO READERS: The Author of This Book is Kind of Crazy, Kind of...more

Stefanie always makes me laugh, just as she reminds me that things could always be (much) worse. Her latest book focuses on the kind of misadventures you can only have here in tinsel-covered Los Angeles...

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ME TALK PRETTY ONE DAY by David Sedaris

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Okay, I picked this one of his, but everything David Sedaris has published is pure gold in my opinion. As humorous essayists go, he is a rock star, and you won't have to read very far into this volume to see why. Tasty and irreverent.

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A CONFEDERACY OF DUNCES by John Kennedy Toole

amazon.com

A wondrous confection of a novel that grows more hilarious with each re-reading. It's been the Mack Daddy of my bookshelf for decades now. Ignatius J. Reilly is an outrageous, unforgettable character. Don't be surprised if you find yourself making your "o-face" while reading this one. Pulitzer prize-winning funny.

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THE HITCHHIKER'S GUIDE TO THE GALAXY by Douglas Adams

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The legendary sci-fi "trilogy in four parts" has so much great stuff jammed into it I don't even know where to start. I've been reading this one since college (yes, I finished it - I mean reading it over and over) and every time I wish I could memorize the whole thing so I could quote it at length on any occasion. All of Adams' books are fantastic - I think I'm soft for this one because it was my first.

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CLAW YOUR WAY TO THE TOP: HOW TO BECOME THE HEAD OF A MAJOR CORPOATION IN ROUGHLY A WEEK by Dave Barry

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(Many) years ago at one of my corporate communications jobs, I ran across an excerpt from this book - a piece entitled "How to Take A Client to Lunch." I read it, fell out of my chair laughing, then raced down the hall to xerox it so I would never have to live without it again. (Oh, and I billed all that time to my least-favorite client, but that's another story. *ahem*) The article sits right now in a desk drawer not six inches from this keyboard. Sometimes I sleep with it.

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THE WRITING CLASS by Jincy Willett

amazon.com

I just discovered this gem of a novel last summer and I had my nose in it through most of our vacation. I love that the main character is a fat, middle-aged recluse and I also love the jumble of varyingly talented students in her extension course. Uh-oh, someone has killed two of the students. (I know - it doesn't sound funny but, believe me, it is.)

Krista: I think it sounds rather fantastic, actually.

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OPTIONS: THE SECRET LIFE OF STEVE JOBS (A Parody) by Daniel Lyons

amazon.com

Screamingly funny, no matter which side of the apple you're on. This is one of the few books that had Jon Bon Jovi (not my husband's real name) clutching his sides with laughter. Based on the uber-popular Fake Steve Jobs blog. (And, in case you're uncomfortable with the parody angle, the book was written and released long before Mr. Jobs' health challenges surfaced.)

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HAPPINESS by Will Ferguson

amazon.com

Not to be confused with the reportedly dreary movie of the same name, this is a clever and entertaining satire in which a self-help book actually works and all of America becomes rampantly happy and well-adjusted, thus endangering the very fabric of our society.

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SMALL WORLD by David Lodge

amazon.com

In this delicious comedy of bad manners, academic rivals circle the globe while vying for a coveted and richly endowed academic chair. As their paths cross in unexpected ways and locales, hi-jinks of every kind ensue. A very funny story written by a master storyteller.

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comments (2)

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cynthia cross:

 I'm a major book worm but still discovered some good ones on here.