Funny Books for Winter Blues


I had planned to title this post something like “10 Hilarious Movies to Brighten Your Winter Doldrums.” But then I couldn’t think of enough funny movies. (And, to be fair, I have a rather dark sense of humor. True story: when husband and I saw Fargo in the theater, we were in hysterics. You could hear our laughter bouncing off the theater walls because not another soul in the place was laughing. I might not be your best source for funny movies.)

Since I have weird, Morticia Adams taste in movies, let’s do books instead. You are prolly worried that I’m going to suggest something like Candide or The Importance of Being Earnest. Normally I would, because those are funny books, but tonight I’ve had two glasses of a most excellent red wine, and I just want a giggle. So here’s a roundup of some of my favorite funny books:

I’m Judging You: The Do-Better Manual by Luvvie Ajayi. Queen of Shade Throwing. She tells it like it is, and you’ll have to check your white privilege at the door because Ms. Ajayi is having none of it. But you’ll laugh until you can’t see the words on the page. You can get more Luvvie every day over at her blog. She is magnificent.

Bossypants by Tina Fey – I re-read this every couple of years because I love her scathing wit and her dry, self-effacing manner.

Yes, Please by Amy Poehler – this is not as good as Tina Fey’s book, and she complains an awful lot about how hard it is to write books. Which, yeah, we get it. That’s why everyone doesn’t do it. But since I think Amy Poehler is adorable, I’m including her. I listened to this one on audio, and I think that made it way better. The chapter about the apology is not at all funny, but I promise it will make you fall in love with her.

Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? And Why Not Me? by Mindy Kaling. I mean. Come on. She has to run out of funny at some point, right? Like, isn’t there a finite amount of humor every person is allotted at birth? How does she keep doing this?

Wishful Drinking by Carrie Fisher. I love all of her books, but this one is my favorite. Bow down to our queen.

Let’s Pretend This Never Happened by Jenny Lawson. The giant chicken story is basically my entire marriage.

Bridget Jones’ Diary by Helen Fielding – I think this entire series is absolutely hilarious.

Anything by David Sedaris. I tried to choose. I really did. But I couldn’t. Just read anything he writes. OK, if you insist on a starting place, go with Me Talk Pretty One Day.

Where’d You Go, Bernadette by Maria Semple – hilarious, spot-on humor that makes you feel happy to be alive. I also loved last year’s Today Will Be Better.

A Walk in the Woods by Bill Bryson – the movie of this book was only OK, but the book is perfect. I have all of Bryson’s books, even that gigantic science one (OK, I’ll tell the truth: I never got through that one.) I think most of his books are classified under travel, but they should be called humor. He has a wry, bemused take on a confusing world. My other favorites are In a Sunburned Country (about traveling through Australia) and Neither Here Nor There: Travels in Europe. But they are all so, so good.

Dad is Fat and Food: A Love Story by Jim Gaffigan. I listened to this one on audio while driving my son to high school. He’s more than Hot Pockets, friends.

Goodbye, Vitamin by Rachel Khong. I’m not sure this is classified under comedy since the overarching story is rather sad. But I laughed out loud many, many times while reading this one.

 High Fidelity by Nick Hornby – goddamn I love, love, love Nick Hornby’s books.

 The Commitments by Roddy Doyle. Or anything by Roddy Doyle. Nobody is funnier than a morose Irishman. Trust me on this.

 Finnegan’s Wake by James Joyce. Poignant, sardonic humor with a … no, I can’t even continue with this nonsense. People smarter than me say it’s a funny book, but I wouldn’t know. I’ve never read this, and I never will.

 The Joy of Leaving Your Shit All Over the Place: The Art of Being Messy by Jennifer McCartney. No more saying thank you to our socks, mmmkay? It’s out of hand.

Your turn – hit me up with some of your favorite funny books!

Leave a Reply