Winter is still here, and we are all looking for ways to stay warm until the sun comes out to play again. Reading with a warm cup of tea is a great way to combat the cold – but it’s not the only way to heat up! We’ve made a list of five books that are sure to get your tummy bouncing and have you laughing so hard you forget all about the bitter cold.
The Accidental Further Adventures of The Hundred-Year-Old Man by Jonas Jonasson:
Jonas Jonasson’s sequel to the 2009 bestseller, The One-Hundred-Year-Old Man Who Climbed out the Window and Disappeared, is another masterful satire on the shortcomings of man. Allan and Julius’s adventures in this book are ridiculous as ever – accidentally launching themselves into the sky in a hot air balloon, they are forced to make an emergency landing… in the ocean. Luckily, they are rescued by a North Korean ship – but as they prepare to return to the mundanity of their everyday lives, they make a surprising discovery: there’s a case of contraband uranium on board. With the discovery of this secret comes dire (and hilarious consequences). Extremely amusing and cheekily political, this book is pure written comedy.
Happy Never After by Jill Stark:
By all appearances, Jill Stark was living the dream: working a highly-coveted job as a senior journalist, dating a sports star, and a best-selling book freshly published and selling like hot-cakes. For years, she had chased her fairy-tale ending, and now she finally had it – but it wasn’t at all what she thought it would be.
Happy Never After is a raw and uplifting exploration of our modern, anxious age. Drawing on her own harrowing experiences at the peak of her illness, Jill bravely and boldly shares the lessons she learnt through her process of recovery, forcing readers to question their preconceived idea of what happiness truly is. Whilst this all sounds like heavy material (and it is), Jill’s narration is endearingly funny. She recounts her experiences through a humorous lens, combining self-deprecation and witty sarcasm to both educate and engage the reader. If you’re looking for a read that will make you laugh, think, and cry all at once, then this book is for you.
Why Mummy Swears by Gill Sims:
Why Mummy Swears is the follow up to Gill Sims’s wildly successful debut novel Why Mummy Drinks, and is just as honest, hilarious and painfully relatable. The author’s deeply honest look at life with kids is also a refreshing counterpoint to those carefully curated mummy blogs that paint such perfect pictures of parenthood.
The protagonist Ellen’s struggles to be seen as more than just a mother in Why Mummy Swears start important conversations about female identity, and the contrasting situations of James and Lydia – both working parents at Ellen’s office – illustrate how working mums and working dads are viewed differently (boo, hiss). Written in diary form in an irreverent voice that recalls the diaries of Bridget Jones and Adrian Mole, Why Mummy Swears is laugh-out-loud funny while dealing with the important stuff.
Afternoons With Harvey Beam by Carrie Cox:
Harvey Beam is a successful talkback radio host. His father, who never really loved him, is dying.
This is the premise of Carrie Cox’s impressive debut novel, Afternoons with Harvey Beam – a tale about the families we create ourselves, and those that we are born into that we cannot change.
Again, this sounds like pretty heavy stuff (and again, it is). But the humour in the novel lies in the protagonist’s true blue, fair dinkum, ocker narration. Harvey is a typical Aussie man, self-deprecating, sarcastic, and endearingly funny. His wisecracks and tongue-in-cheek comments will have you giggling with the turn of every page.
When Life Gives you Lululemons by Lauren Weisberger:
Lauren Weisberger’s latest, uproarious novel sees a welcome return of some of the cast of her bestselling, 2003 title, The Devil Wears Prada, which was turned into the hit movie starring Meryl Streep. And it delivers big-time, not only with its echoes of the original fabulous novel but with its insightful look at how the siren call of career satisfaction can cast a pall over the joys of motherhood, and how life has a way of subverting the best-laid plans.
When Life Gives You Lululemons is laugh-until-you-snort funny with its sharp and unapologetic observations of womanhood: ‘She motioned to her own enormous midsection, which was nothing like the cute basketball-under-the-shirt she’d imagined. Instead she looked like she’d swallowed a whole goat.’ Hilariously clever and paired beautifully with your favourite cocktail of choice, this book will have your sides hurting.