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Our new humour section is filled with books with elements of humour. Books that will make you laugh, chortle and chuckle as you read.
A seriously fabulous, gritty, and whip-cracking humour filled read. Mary Shields is a menopausal probation officer on the edge, when a murderer is released into her care events soon spiral out of control. The first line smacked me in the face, I half flinched, half blurted with laughter. Just a note of warning, while I discovered a smirk lurking on nearly every page, some may see the humour as warped. It is the type of dark humour typical of anyone who has worked in some seriously difficult situations, where if you didn’t laugh you’d cry. Helen Fitzgerald is the author of the BBC TV series The Cry, and previously worked as a criminal justice social worker. Her knowledge shines through, I didn’t stop, I didn’t question, I simply sank into the deep murky depths of the story and believed. When I reached the oh so beautiful end I wanted to leap to my feet and give Helen Fitzgerald a standing ovation. I absolutely adored Worst Case Scenario, this is short, sharp storytelling at its very best, which has earned it a place as one of my picks of the month and a LoveReading star book.
'Funny and frank' DAWN O'PORTER 'Truly brilliant' EMMA GANNON Two mothers. Two daughters. One school place. Imogen and Lily are old friends - they've shared hangovers, unsuitable boyfriends and wild nights out together. But now they're mums, and their partying days are behind them. When a place comes up at one of the best primary schools in the area, both women want it for their daughters. From faking religious beliefs to bogus break-ups, Imogen and Lily will go to any lengths to secure the perfect school for their children - and so will all the other mothers. Will their friendship survive the strain? Will their marriages take the pressure? And when a sexy new vicar arrives on the scene, will the mothers' keep focus for long enough to keep their eyes on the prize? A hilarious, heartwarming read, perfect for fans of Sophie Kinsella and Fiona Gibson.
A murderous tale with chicken fry-ups, a '66 Chevy Nova, humour and mysterious characters. In the south of the USA, in a Mississippi town called Greenwood, Emmaline is missing. It's down to Ms Felicity Graves, a retired English headmistress to find her. Determined and brilliantly fun to go on this adventure with, Felicity Graves finds an unlikely companion in a tour guide, Willie Cato. Through their travels in the quest for clues to the whereabouts of Emmaline, there are dark secrets trying to stay hidden by dark and mysterious characters that do all they can to thwart the searching duo. The story is written beautifully and the murder mystery unfolds and reveals it's secrets whilst keeping you guessing all the way. You feel you are there with Ms Graves and it leaves you hoping she has many more adventures to share. Nikki Telling, A LoveReading Ambassador
I am well aware of homeless people in Britain and donate to Shelter as you can see the plight of homelessness has gone on too long. I have come across a book such as a Street Cat Named Bob which concerned homeless people but to be honest I am not sure just how many are out there. London 35 years ago the newspaper industry is changing and moving out of the famous Fleet Street area. Tradition is ending, but what about the people who relied on the warmth of the buildings at night as the papers rolled off the press - a hive of activity and somewhere to call home on those long cold nights. The story centres around Nobby and old homeless man who has relied on this area with his friends and it was home. Spencer a boy finds Nobby in his shed and the two become friends next Spencer then introduces Nobby to his friends -as Spencer's father works in the newspaper industry thus begins a plight of the homeless people - this is not just a 21st-century problem. this is about friendship and friendship in unusual circumstances and not writing this man off as a tramp or vagrant and there are aspects that are slightly off the wall - even 35 years go when Spencer is missing from his family for a number of days -with strangers - but saying that it is a powerful piece of writing. These people know the area and with some help, they go on to help Nobby write articles in a newspaper. Powerful story of trust, friendship bonded in unusual circumstances and times where the reader will laugh - a really good read. Jane Brown, A LoveReading Ambassador
A gentle (well, apart from the occasional brawl and scuffle), amusing mystery focusing on an orchestra who with good intentions, invite two local schools to join them. The two very different schools have never mixed, and when things start to go missing, accusations aren’t too far around the corner. Add to the mix a dash of romance, an off duty Detective Chief Inspector, a famous composer, plenty of gossip after practice at the pub and you have an enjoyable read in your hands. This is book two in The Stockwell Park Orchestra Series however I joined here and felt entirely comfortable doing so. Isabel Rogers balances the music know-how with more than a whiff of mystery. The characters are bright and engaging, or occasionally downright dastardly. Bold as Brass is an entertaining read, light-hearted it may be, it is also capable of provoking thoughts too.
If books were friends (and more than a few are) then I feel as though I have met the most wonderfully quirky forever friend. Gravity is the Thing is a complete joy of a book, and one that refuses to be pigeonholed into a genre. Abi, a Sydney cafe owner, has been invited to attend a retreat to learn the truth about ‘The Guidebook’, chapters have been arriving since she was a teen, and have kept her company in the darkest of times. The book floats between 1990 and 2010, and as Abi opens up her life, she revisits, examines, and searches for answers. Jaclyn Moriarty writes with the most beautiful eloquence, sharp pointed observations sit alongside the tightest of warm hugs. I wanted to meander, to wander, to eke out my reading time, and yet hoover up the words and the feelings they created in one heady go. I contemplated loss and grief, I smiled, laughed, and believed… oh how I believed! Gravity is the Thing is different (in the best possible way), and I predict that this will be one of my favourite books of the year. So, as well as being one of our Books of the Month, it has also been chosen as a LoveReading Star Book. It really is that gorgeous! Explore our '80+ Books That Deilver a Hug' listicle for more feel-good or uplifting books.
Darkly playful, Jeanette Winterson’s Frankissstein is an astonishing intertextual re-conjuring of Mary Shelley’s masterpiece, melding an interpretation of Shelley’s novel and life with an exploration of what it is to be human, freedom, sex, gender and love. It’s thought-provoking, thrilling, and funny to boot. Contextualised in - and interspersed with - Shelley’s writing of Frankenstein, we are transported to Memphis where modern-day transgender Dr Ry Shelley attends a robotics expo to “consider how robots will affect our mental and physical health.” Here Ry encounters Ron, the Welsh inventor of a new range of Sexbots he believes will provide a woman to satisfy every male need, from deluxe bots who can hold a conversation (“she waits till you’re finished, of course, no interrupting”), to Germaine, a “70s feminist version with no bra, messy hair and a dildo for anal play”. It’s at the expo that Ry first encounters - and later falls for - Professor Victor Stein, a leader in the field of Artificial Intelligence who has dealings with The Alcor Life Extension Foundation, an Arizona facility that processes dead bodies with the aim of indefinitely extending life. Alongside the love story, and the juxtaposition of Frankenstein with contemporary conversations around A.I., the novel also addresses Brexit, bigotry, racism and English insularity: “The English are serial racists – one group gets accepted, another group becomes the scapegoat”. And back in Shelley’s day, England is described as, "small-minded, smug, self-righteous, unjust, a country that hates the stranger, whether that stranger be a foreigner or an atheist, or a poet, or a thinker, or a radical, or a woman.” Profound, absurd and mischievous, this is an incisive, suggestive romp for our times.
**The brand new Diary of a Wimpy Kid book is out now!** The 13th hilarious book in Jeff Kinney's bestselling Diary of a Wimpy Kid series. When snow shuts down Greg Heffley's middle school, his neighbourhood transforms into a wintry battlefield. Rival groups fight over territory, build massive snow forts, and stage epic snowball fights. And in the crosshairs are Greg and his trusty best friend, Rowley Jefferson. It's a fight for survival as Greg and Rowley navigate alliances, betrayals, and warring gangs in a neighbourhood meltdown. When the snow clears, will Greg and Rowley emerge as heroes? Or will they even survive to see another day? With millions of books sold around the world in 65 editions and 56 languages, Wimpy Kid has turned millions of kids into readers.
Sassy, saucy, and a little bit sweary! This is Volume One in the Cherry PI mystery series. Meet Cherry Hinton, a former journalist who was humiliated on live TV, she now runs a cake shop full of Essex collection creations such as Hornchurches of Plenty. Her former investigative skills come to the fore when she is asked to look into the murder of a contestant on a reality show, everyone saw who murdered him, or did they! Set in Essex with the focus on reality TV shows, you’ll find plenty to give your armchair detective mind a workout. Bold, amusing, and that little bit different, Cherry Slice is an entertaining murder mystery.
This sequel to John Uttley’s family drama Where’s Sailor Jack? sees Bob, now past his “three score and ten”, dealing with era-defining external changes (Brexit, changes in the Labour Party, Donald Trump’s presidency) alongside day-to-day life, with his new love Wendy also given her own narrative. Having survived a divorce and a heart attack, and found himself new partner, Bob has also bought himself a grave plot “near enough to the gate for me to look for an escape if I’m sent to the wrong place,” he remarks with typically wry humour. Lively new characters are also introduced in this sequel, courtesy of teacher Lucy Fishwick, reputedly “a man-eater of all ages and sizes”, and her daughter Maddie, who’s often the object of male characters’ lascivious gazes. Reflective, nostalgic, and suffused in the author’s roots, No Precedent will appeal to those interested in personal takes on present-day political shifts. Indeed, it often reads as if lines between characters’ views and those of the author have been blurred. Tony Blair, Ed Miliband, Boris Johnson, Jeremy Corbyn, Teresa May, Jacob Rees-Mogg, John Bercow and Keir Starmer - and others - are discussed, and we’re also offered a reason for the collapse of Labour’s red wall in the 2019 general election: “I suppose they took the view that if you can’t beat the bastards then you might as well join them, if only for a while.” With loss, immortality (and the fates of Bolton and Blackpool football clubs) covered alongside politics, the overall reading experience is akin to overhearing a wry-minded, well-meaning stranger, then getting to know them over the course of an evening.
Murder, mystery, and mayhem abound in this amusing action-packed read. I missed out on Volume One, ‘The Truth About Archie and Pye’ and though I would suggest starting at the beginning, I was still able to enjoy this mad caper of a story without feeling as though I had been left behind. This may be a mathematical mystery series with mentions of coding and bitcoins to be found (eeek) but I think I coped rather well as someone who finds maths, shall we say, challenging! Tom Winscombe narrates this story, he is trying to locate his girlfriend, stolen computers, lots and lots of answers, oh, and a snake! Tom usually wanders or jogs into the centre of trouble, dead bodies have a habit of turning up at the same time he does, and in terms of ability, just imagine the opposite of James Bond! Jonathan Pinnock writes with dash and verve, creating interesting characters and plenty of eyebrow raising situations. ‘A Question of Trust’ is an entertaining read, it is beautifully easy to fall into and really enjoyable.
The City That Barks and Roars is a humorous anthropomorphic crime fiction. As I started reading, following Chico Monkey as he heads into the city to start his new detective role there was that this book was going to be like Zootopia but rewritten for an adult audience. This was a recurring thought and I think it’s a very good way to explain or summarise the book in a sentence so I was amused when I saw it mentioned in the description after I had finished reading. I particularly like the attention to detail shown throughout the plot, the logistics of Chico Monkey getting into the car belonging to his partner, Frank Penguin as they get to work hunting for Lucas Panda. As the search for Frank’s missing partner goes on, they realise it’s connected to a darker web of corruption. I liked this book and I think it would be good for people who like good old-fashion crime mysteries, although this one does have a furry and feathery twist. I thought that the characters were all very different and I enjoyed trying to work out what animal they were before being told, and discovering whether they had their own ulterior motive that would pull Monkey and Frank deeper into the mire. The City That Barks and Roars is a quick and entertaining read that I enjoyed and would recommend for anyone looking for a good detective mystery.
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