This month the winner of this year's Bolinger Everyman Wodehouse Prize for comic literature is announced (I'd tell you when but I can't find any mention of the date).
I find I'm often asked to recommend 'a funny book'. Sometimes escaping into another person's story isn't always enough, we need humour to take us out of ourselves and it's particularly nice to give someone a book which will make them smile. But it's hard to find a book which is universally funny.
My recommendations this week lightened my mood in all three categories - non-fiction, fiction and children's books (scroll down for details). Nina Stibbe and Dolly Alderton are both past winners of the Bollinger Everyman Wodehouse Prize which presents a case of champagne and 52 volumes of the Everyman Wodehouse edition to the triumphant author, as well as naming a Gloucestershire Old Spots pig after the winning novel.
The book we're reading together for the Framlingham Book Group at Ottie and the Bea was also shortlisted for the prize last year. It's 'Echo Chamber' by John Boyne. You might like to read along to see what you think.
I asked John last weekend at the Southwold Literary Festival, how he views humour in his books.
'I try to use it in my novels, even the bleaker ones,' he said. 'But the two things I always think are most difficult to do in books is to make people laugh and make people scared. (Making them cry isn’t as difficult!).'
Thank you for reading.