The Straight Dope

Go Back   Straight Dope Message Board > Main > Cafe Society

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 12-07-2012, 04:44 PM
Obsidian Obsidian is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Recommend me a book that will cheer me up

So. Yesterday I got some awful news. I spent yesterday mostly on recreational crying and today mostly trying not to cry at my desk.

However, Amazon decided to ship my backordered new Kindle two weeks ahead of schedule, and it is waiting for me on my porch. Getting into a good book and getting out of my head seems like a fantastic idea.

I am in search of a good, entertaining book. Bonus if it will make me laugh. Fiction or Non-Fiction ok. Happy ending a must. Preferably not in any way about pregnancy, babies, or motherhood. I'd like it to be something I can finish in a weekend, but won't blow through in a few hours either (am a pretty fast reader). It needs to be available on Amazon Kindle, of course.

I'm a chick, but a very nerdy one. Y'all seemed like a compatible audience to ask. Any suggestions?
Reply With Quote
Advertisements  
  #2  
Old 12-07-2012, 05:14 PM
cher3 cher3 is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 1999
I head for the Number 1 Ladies Detective Agency books when I am feeling down. Mma Ramotswe and company are just so nice to be around. It does occasionally touch on some of those themes, but they are (usually) not central and there is always a happy ending.

Each book is pretty short, but there is a whole series.
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 12-07-2012, 05:33 PM
tellyworth tellyworth is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 2,059
Here's a freebie: Right Ho, Jeeves by P.G. Wodehouse.
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 12-07-2012, 05:38 PM
Tara57 Tara57 is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Holidays on Ice, by David Sedaris
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 12-07-2012, 06:32 PM
Unauthorized Cinnamon Unauthorized Cinnamon is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: Cary, NC
Posts: 4,985
Sorry to hear you are so down. Whatever your specific situation is, I think I can sympathize a bit - the night I was having my miscarriage I watched a bunch of movies to distract myself/cheer myself up, and 3 out of 4 had pregnancy or miscarriage plots. I didn't know whether to laugh or cry, it was so ridiculous! Hang in there, sweetie.

Some of my favorite funny or heartwarming books:
The Stupidest Angel
Major Pettigrew's Last Stand
Good Omens
The Enchanted April (FREE)
Pride and Prejudice (FREE) - if you haven't read it, check it out. Not one, but TWO of the most hilariously bad marriage proposals in all of literature.
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 12-07-2012, 06:39 PM
melondeca melondeca is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Lamb by Christopher Moore
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 12-07-2012, 07:06 PM
jsgoddess jsgoddess is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
If you have a library card, be sure to check out your local library for Kindle books so that you can blow through them at an alarming rate without impoverishing yourself.


Mary Roach. She writes extremely funny non-fiction. I don't remember if Bonk had anything to do with pregnancy (it's about sex), but I doubt any of the others do.

Bill Bryson. More funny non-fiction.

Dick Francis. Thrillers set around horse racing.

Dorothy Sayers. Golden Age mysteries.

MM Kaye. Mystery suspense set in exotic locales.

The Vicky Moon books by Elizabeth Peters, starting with Borrower of the Night. I think Peters is quite funny.

The Stephanie Plum books by Janet Evanovich, starting with One for the Money. I got tired of this series, but the first ones are laugh out loud funny.

The Sam Jones books by Lauren Henderson, starting with Black Rubber Dress. There are two earlier books, but they are extremely hard to find.

Apparently, I find comfort in murder mysteries. What this says about me is better left alone.
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 12-07-2012, 07:09 PM
Thudlow Boink Thudlow Boink is online now
Charter Member
 
Join Date: May 2000
Location: Springfield, IL
Posts: 18,154
Quote:
Originally Posted by tellyworth View Post
Here's a freebie: Right Ho, Jeeves by P.G. Wodehouse.
Also available directly from Amazon.
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 12-07-2012, 07:13 PM
Sam A. Robrin Sam A. Robrin is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: May 2010
Spider Robinson's Callahan's Crosstime Saloon stories do it for me. There are quite a few other books in the series, but it makes the most sense to start with the first.
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 12-07-2012, 08:20 PM
Mean Mr. Mustard Mean Mr. Mustard is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
If you are a Steve Martin fan, his autobiography is funny, extremely well-written, and a very pleasant diversion.

Similarly, Roger Ebert's memoir is equally worthy.

Sorry about your difficult times.


mmm
Reply With Quote
  #11  
Old 12-07-2012, 08:26 PM
Leaffan Leaffan is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Woody Allen:

- Side Effects

- Without Feathers


You will be astounded at his bizarre and wacky non-sequiturial sense of humour.
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old 12-07-2012, 08:58 PM
SCAdian SCAdian is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
The funniest book I can think of is, alas, not available for Kindle....
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old 12-07-2012, 09:32 PM
Brynda Brynda is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Aug 2000
Strongly second the No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency series and Major Pettigrew's Last Stand. I also very much enjoyed The Forgotten Garden, by Kate Morton.
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old 12-07-2012, 09:51 PM
Implicit Implicit is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Quote:
Originally Posted by cher3 View Post
I head for the Number 1 Ladies Detective Agency books when I am feeling down. Mma Ramotswe and company are just so nice to be around. It does occasionally touch on some of those themes, but they are (usually) not central and there is always a happy ending.

Each book is pretty short, but there is a whole series.
Ha, you beat me to it. These are my go-to happy books, but I listen to them as audiobooks. The narrator's voice is soooooo sooooothing. I love the way she rolls her rrrrrrr's.

Another happy book I listened to lately was a The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett, which is available for your Kindle free at Project Gutenberg.

Last edited by Implicit; 12-07-2012 at 09:52 PM..
Reply With Quote
  #15  
Old 12-07-2012, 09:56 PM
Typo Knig Typo Knig is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
National Lampoon's Bored of the Rings - it has more jokes per page than anything else I've read. Pat McManus was the humor columnist for Field and Stream. His collected columns are very funny even if you don't hunt or camp or fish. If you or anyone you know has hunted or fished or camped they are hilarious. His novel's pretty good, too. Dave Barry - including his novels. The Hitch-Hikers Guide to the Galaxy. I don't know which of these are on Kindle, if any.
Reply With Quote
  #16  
Old 12-07-2012, 10:54 PM
Obsidian Obsidian is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Thanks for the awesome suggestions guys! I have lots to look at now.
Reply With Quote
  #17  
Old 12-07-2012, 11:12 PM
Zsofia Zsofia is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
You know, I was trying to think of good ideas but then I have to go with the first post - No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency. I seriously need to catch up on those.

I'd also agree with whoever mentioned the Dorothy Sayers Wimsey novels, particularly the ones with Harriet Vane (my particular favorite, among my favorite books in the world, is Gaudy Night.)

How about the book that got me to read that one - Connie Willis can write some sad sad books but I first read her with To Say Nothing Of The Dog, which is not sad at all. Or if you want some Victorian very funny humor, Three Men In A Boat, which is what the Willis book is riffing off of.
Reply With Quote
  #18  
Old 12-08-2012, 03:59 PM
Dendarii Dame Dendarii Dame is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: May 2011
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sam A. Robrin View Post
Spider Robinson's Callahan's Crosstime Saloon stories do it for me. There are quite a few other books in the series, but it makes the most sense to start with the first.
If you do, do not read the story "A Voice Was Heard in Ramah", based on your OP. It's a great story, they all are in that collection, but it's definitely about what you said you don't want to read about.
Reply With Quote
  #19  
Old 12-08-2012, 04:02 PM
The Tooth The Tooth is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Dec 2001
Terry Pratchett. Always, Terry Pratchett. Lords and Ladies is one of my favourites.
Reply With Quote
  #20  
Old 12-09-2012, 05:57 PM
sinjin sinjin is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
For funny try Connie Willis's : Bellweather..Lamb makes me cry at the end, don't know why cause I know how it ends anyway. While I agree with the "Stupidest Angel" it helps if you've read some of Christopher Moore's other books first. Carl Hiaasien's stuff always makes me laugh. And of course Terry Pratchet always works as others have said.
Reply With Quote
  #21  
Old 12-09-2012, 06:52 PM
Dangerosa Dangerosa is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Feb 2000
Kevin Kling's The Dog Says How is a bunch of essays that is roll on the floor funny (and sometimes poignant as well, but mostly just funny).
Reply With Quote
  #22  
Old 12-09-2012, 07:22 PM
Attack from the 3rd dimension Attack from the 3rd dimension is online now
Guest
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
I'll second Wodehouse's Jeeves books, and Pratchett's Diskworld books
Reply With Quote
  #23  
Old 12-09-2012, 07:49 PM
RealityChuck RealityChuck is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Apr 1999
Location: Schenectady, NY, USA
Posts: 35,677
Christopher Moore. His latest. Sacre Bleu is his best.
Anything by A. Lee Martinez. Monster is probably his best, but they're all funny fantasy adventures.
Jasper fforde's The Eyre Affair
__________________
"East is east and west is west and if you take cranberries and stew them like applesauce they taste much more like prunes than rhubarb does."
Purveyor of fine science fiction since 1982.
Reply With Quote
  #24  
Old 12-09-2012, 08:42 PM
Tapiotar Tapiotar is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Ditto on Christopher Moore, the first 6 Stephanie Plum books by Evanovitch, and Terry Pratchett.
Let me add the Amelia Peabody series by Elizabeth Peters, starting with The Crocodile on the Sandbank. She makes delicious fun of the intrepid Victorian British female explorer, spoofs the Victoria Holt type of Gothic romance, and throws in a lot of good Egyptology. Read in order for character development.
Also, The Herring Seller's Apprentice, by LC Tyler. Hero a mild-mannered writer of mediocre mysteries and his bullying agent. British humor.
Georgette Heyer. For years, I never read them, because they are romance, and I was prejudiced against romance. But they are quite clever, the Regency slang and costumes thoroughly researched, and, most important of all right now, very funny. Think of them as Jane Austen light.
Reply With Quote
  #25  
Old 12-09-2012, 09:28 PM
ducati ducati is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Go The Fuck To Sleep, as read by Samuel L. Jackson.

A short read to be sure, but I dare you not laugh!
Reply With Quote
  #26  
Old 12-10-2012, 12:02 AM
pbbth pbbth is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Let's Pretend This Never Happened: A Mostly True Memoir by Jenny Lawson. You will laugh yourself stupid, I promise.
Reply With Quote
  #27  
Old 12-10-2012, 12:35 AM
rowrrbazzle rowrrbazzle is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jul 1999
Harpo Marx's memoirs, Harpo Speaks!

Preview at Amazon's "Look Inside" or Google Books. How he became a member of the Algonquin Round Table.

There were a lot of ups and downs until they finally made Broadway. After that, the amount of famous people he met are just astounding.
Reply With Quote
  #28  
Old 12-10-2012, 01:35 AM
TreacherousCretin TreacherousCretin is offline
Horrified Onlooker
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Moscow, Idaho
Posts: 3,745
Quote:
Originally Posted by tellyworth View Post
Here's a freebie: Right Ho, Jeeves by P.G. Wodehouse.
Yes.
Reply With Quote
  #29  
Old 12-10-2012, 10:22 AM
astorian astorian is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 1999
Three Men in a Boat by Jerome K. Jerome
Reply With Quote
  #30  
Old 12-10-2012, 10:38 AM
Enright3 Enright3 is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Mar 1999
Location: Atlanta, GA
Posts: 5,570
Seriously? With this crew, no one has mentioned The Princess Bride?

My magic number (the post number I was guessing would be the one that suggested it) was 5.
Reply With Quote
  #31  
Old 12-10-2012, 01:46 PM
Jake Jake is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Jul 1999
Location: NC, USA
Posts: 3,400
Anything by Thorne Smith.
Reply With Quote
  #32  
Old 12-10-2012, 08:09 PM
Sigmagirl Sigmagirl is offline
Go Browns!
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Western Reserve
Posts: 8,181
The Cursing Mommy's Book of Days by Ian Frazier. You will thank me when you stop laughing.
Reply With Quote
  #33  
Old 12-10-2012, 08:44 PM
sisu sisu is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: May 2009
A little off what you have asked for but I have always found that when I need a cheer I just reread Jonathon Livingston Seagull by Richard Bach.
Reply With Quote
  #34  
Old 12-10-2012, 09:56 PM
Thudlow Boink Thudlow Boink is online now
Charter Member
 
Join Date: May 2000
Location: Springfield, IL
Posts: 18,154
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sigmagirl View Post
The Cursing Mommy's Book of Days by Ian Frazier. You will thank me when you stop laughing.
Quote:
Originally Posted by ducati View Post
Go The Fuck To Sleep, as read by Samuel L. Jackson.
Do these adhere to the OP's request:
Quote:
Originally Posted by Obsidian View Post
Preferably not in any way about pregnancy, babies, or motherhood.
?
Reply With Quote
Reply



Bookmarks

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 10:34 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

Send questions for Cecil Adams to: cecil@chicagoreader.com

Send comments about this website to: webmaster@straightdope.com

Terms of Use / Privacy Policy

Advertise on the Straight Dope!
(Your direct line to thousands of the smartest, hippest people on the planet, plus a few total dipsticks.)

Publishers - interested in subscribing to the Straight Dope?
Write to: sdsubscriptions@chicagoreader.com.

Copyright 2013 Sun-Times Media, LLC.