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Cannonball Read IV: Three Men in a Boat by Jerome K. Jerome

By ElCicco | Book Reviews | February 22, 2012 | Comments ()

This is a book that is irresistibly quotable. Among my favorites:

  • On finding "no-trespassing" signs along the river, right where someone wants to stop and enjoy a picnic lunch: "The sight of those notice-boards rouses every evil instinct in my nature. I feel I want to tear each one down, and hammer it over the head of the man who put it up...."
  • On river rage: "When another boat gets in my way, I feel I want to take an oar and kill all the people in it."
  • When the three men ram into a fishing boat full of old men: "...they cursed us -- not with a common cursory curse, but with long, carefully-thought-out, comprehensive curses, that embraced the whole of our career, and went away into the distant future, and included all our relatives, and covered everything with us -- good, substantial curses."
  • On cleaning clothes while camping: "She said it had not been like washing, it had been more in the nature of excavating."
  • And the description of a quaint, picturesque cottage: "once-upon-a-timeyfied."

While there is much in this story to make one smile and chuckle, the stories of traveling by train with cheese and of trying to open a tin of pineapple without benefit of a can opener are laugh-out-loud funny.

Three Men in a Boat is a great piece of brain candy. If you need a break and a laugh, this is an excellent choice.

This review is part of Cannonball Read IV. Read all about it, and find more of ElCicco's reviews on the group blog.

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