Tuesday 27 April 2010


I pass this titbit on for its comedy value - Ian McEwan has been nominated for the P.G. Wodehouse prize for comic fiction. I heard the clodhoppingly unfunny Solar when it was read as Radio 4's Book At Bedtime (in heavily abridged form - I dread to imagine what reading the whole thing must be like). I laughed aloud all right - but not in a good way... Never mind, Wodehouse will be chuckling at all this, somewhere.


  1. I like the quote:

    '"Perhaps not enough books can make us laugh aloud as Wodehouse does," said publisher David Campbell, part of the judging panel. "This shortlist will."'

    Perhaps Mr. Campbell knows exactly what he is doing.

    (I didn't even realise that McEwan wrote comedy or that 'Solar' was meant to be funny. I'll have to search it out next time I'm in my favourite bookshop.)

  2. I wouldn't advise it Dick.

  3. To adapt the Bob Monkhouse joke for McEwan: 'They laughed when I told them I was writing a comic novel. They aren't now'.

  4. I've never given McEwan's books a fair try but something about them (or him?) makes me disinclined to beat myself up about this too much. They seem to be the sort of book that a politician would arrange to be photographed reading on holiday --- a bit brainy, and a bit serious, to suggest some sort of bottom, but nothing that is going to scare off the voters?