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Come tell me what the funniest line is you've ever read in a book :-D

(72 Posts)
Jacksmania Mon 28-Oct-13 18:47:19

Have just been reading "Silken Prey" by John Sandford, and laughed so hard at this line I woke up DH who was not very pleased with me grin

In the book, Lucas Davenport says something to another police officer about the police commissioner (I believe that's her title), Rose Marie Roux, and the other cop shouts "Fuck a bunch of Rose Marie! I'm going to put wheels on that bitch and roll her right into the Mississippi!"

<roar> grin


DuchessofMalfi Sat 02-Nov-13 08:36:56

Some of the best I've read come from Janet Evanovich's Stephanie Plum novels - example from Seven Up -

"Is that a bulletproof vest? See, now that's so insulting. That's like saying I'm not smart enough to shoot you in the head".

NotCitrus Sat 02-Nov-13 08:48:27

Hitchhiker's is great - Mostly Harmless wasn't nearly as good except for one scene where Arthur Dent is plummeting through the air hanging onto a small robot he's named Colin, who can fly, but isn't going up when yelled at.
"Arthur realised he had forgotten to tell Colin that his name was Colin. 'Robot,' he said, 'your name is Colin. So when I shout Colin, go up, I want you, Colin, to go up. Get it?"

Christopher Brookmyre is hysterical, especially when Sarah is being sarcastic at Jack Parlabane, but my favourite scene is in Be my Enemy where Jack finds a rope that isn't. Has me in stitches every time and I don't like gory fiction.

Jacksmania Sat 02-Nov-13 17:10:58

Oh, I read one the other day that had me in stitches and now I can't remember it!!! <wails>

woowoo22 Sat 02-Nov-13 17:50:18

Jacksmania you have reminded me why I should get my finger out and keep a reading journal! Keep meaning to start one. Have laughed at loads of bits in books but I forget everything unless it is written down somewhere. Bill Bryson' s Notes from a small island has lots of funny lines, can't bloody remember them though!

DonkeysDontRideBicycles Sun 03-Nov-13 12:07:22

In "The Talented Mr Ripley" when Tom has just killed someone and is disposing of the body -
Freddie was still limp as a rubber doll. What was all this about rigor mortis?....Tom cursed his ugly weight... He was tired, tired to the point of crying, sick of the sight of Fredie Miles..

Patricia Highsmith makes a cold blooded killer sound like a petulant toddler.

There are lots of snappy witty lines in Nora Ephron's ""Heartburn" but I laughed at
I wish I'd known it was Thema's birthday; I would have sent her a present myself.
A garotte.

VanderlayIndustries Mon 04-Nov-13 10:59:31

I found this scene from "The Birds of The Air" by Alice Thomas Ellis (a Book People discovery) hilarious.

The setting is a rather disastrous Christmas day where an emotional Barbara has got drunk and has been doused with coffee-grains and water by her well-meaning teenage son.

"^It was to this scene that the others returned.
They saw Barbara on the floor, lying wet and dirt-streaked and weeping, Mary poised over her with a rug as though her sister was a budgerigar who would not be silent for the night...^"

It really tickled me but dh just looked slightly embarrassed for me when I read it out to him with tears running down my face.

I really like the sound of "100 year old..." and will put it on my Christmas list.

Thewhingingdefective Mon 04-Nov-13 17:47:24

I don't have the book to hand and it's non fiction so shouldn't really be in this thread, but in Racing Pigs and Giant Marrows by Harry Pearson, there is a description of a small animal exhibition at a country fair that cracks me up. There's a sign near the cavies that are for sale that reads 'pet only' to deter anyone standing by, holding two slices of bread and slavering.

Jacksmania Mon 04-Nov-13 18:31:30

I'm just reading "Fool" by Christopher Moore. It has too many funny lines to count. Also by Moore, "Lamb: the Gospel of Biff, Christ's Childhood Friend", and its sequel "The Stupidest Angel" - rib-crackingly funny.

JaimeLea Thu 21-Nov-13 18:43:01

One of the amusing verses from The Mighty Kalym is funny. "But little did they know that Kalym was scared. He silently prayed that his life would be spared. As he crept about quietly he made a rude sound. He thought he’d heard a Troll skulking around." Or at least that's what my son thinks.

Ellisisland Thu 21-Nov-13 18:46:04

Loads of lines from 'my family and other animals' by Gerald Durrell have me crying with laughter. grin

MadeOfStarDust Thu 21-Nov-13 20:45:51

Bill Bryson books are always good for a belly fave is

In notes from a big country - when he is flying and knocks his drink onto a lady's lap not once, but twice ..... the description of doing it is funny enough, but then she uttered words starting with Oh... finished with Sake and in between had some words he never heard uttered in public before......

" certainly not by a nun......"

SparklyFucker Thu 21-Nov-13 20:56:34

Pretty much anything by Pratchett can have me crying with laughter, "What are a safety catch?" from Men at Arms(?) and "When Mister Safety Catch is not on, Mr Crossbow is not your friend" from The Fifth Elephant are particular favourites. I can usually barely breathe oe see through the tears of laughter by the time I reach the end of those paragraphs.

DawnOfTheDee Thu 21-Nov-13 20:57:52

“Andre, a simple peasant, had only one thing on his mind as he crept along the East wall: ‘Andre creep…Andre creep… Andre creep.’”

Not sure what book it's from but there's a competition each year to find the worst and funniest opening lines to a book.

notnowImreading Thu 21-Nov-13 21:02:34

'I was feeling as faint as a fat woman at a fireman's ball.'
'It was a blonde. A blonde to make a bishop kick a hole in a stained glass window.'
'I'm an occasional drinker. The kind of guy who occasionally goes out for a beer and wakes up two weeks later in Singapore with a full beard.'
All Raymond Chandler - so many more. Love him.

Greensleeves Thu 21-Nov-13 21:05:15

Slaughterhouse 5

am paraphrasing a bit

"Roland had been unpopular in Pittsburgh. He was always being ditched in Pittsburgh by people who did not want him with them. Roland had been unpopular because he was stupid and fat and mean, and smelled like bacon no matter how much he washed."

andthepiggotupandslowlywalkeda Thu 21-Nov-13 21:07:03

A compilation of Clive James's television reviews. Describing Barbara Cartland: 'Twin miracles of mascara, her eyes looked like the corpses of two small crows that had crashed into a chalk cliff.'

More CJ moments of joy here

Also, Louise, thank you for the quote about the Englishman about to speak French. I was trying to remember who wrote that just the other day.

Itsjustafleshwound Thu 21-Nov-13 21:13:21

Bill Bryson (trip around America) always has me in stitches ...

LittleNoona Thu 21-Nov-13 21:14:02

From A Confederacy of Dunces by John Kennedy Toole grin

“I dust a addition, I am at the moment writing a lengthy indictment against our century. When my brain begins to reel from my literary labors, I make an occasional cheese dip."

“I suspect that I am the result of particularly weak conception on the part of my father. His sperm was probably emitted in a rather offhand manner.”

“It's not your fate to be well treated," Ignatius cried. "You're an overt masochist. Nice treatment will confuse and destroy you.”

“Mother went out again tonight, looking like a courtesan.”

“I should perhaps warn you that I am about to faint from anxiety and general depression, though. The film I saw last night was especially grueling, a teen-age beach musical. I almost collapsed during the singing sequence on surfboard.”

“Go dangle your withered parts over the toilet!' Ignatius screamed savagely.”

“She ran into the bathroom and powdered her face and the front of her dress, drew a surrealistic version of a mouth beneath her nose, and dashed into her bedroom to find a coat.”

TantrumsAndBalloons Thu 21-Nov-13 21:16:06

I cannot remember for the life of me where I read this.

"my mother made me a homosexual"

"if I give her the wool, will she make me one too?"

ShriekingGnawer Thu 21-Nov-13 21:52:40

I've read that too, tantrums, but also can't remember where.

ShriekingGnawer Thu 21-Nov-13 21:57:36

Apparently it's graffiti!

ElleBellyBeeblebrox Fri 22-Nov-13 05:59:54

Lots of catch 22, but the whole trial scene has me in tears.

"Oh, my God! Read me back his last line, stupid. Say, what the hell's your name, anyway?"

"Popinjay, sir."

"Well, you're next, Popinjay. As soon as this trial ends, your trial begins. Get it?"

DrankSangriaInThePark Fri 22-Nov-13 06:23:58

Oh Bill Bryson, almost everything he says makes me wee (and insanely jealous I can't be that funny)

I know she has now plumbed the depths of shite-ness but in the first Bridget Jones, the comment about Mark Darcy being moody- something about being called Mr Darcy and standing leaning on mantlepieces at parties being like being called Heathcliff and running round in the dark banging your head against trees. I first read that in an airport and really did scare people when I l-o-l'd.

Off to buy the Crow Road- loved it, and Espedair St, wonder if that is only 99p as well?

MorgauseIsNotBlinking Fri 22-Nov-13 06:39:48

YY to Bill Bryson and Clive James also the Blessed Spike -

'Caw!' said the crow. 'Balls!' said the Milligan. Peering intently from behind a wall was something that Milligan could only hope was a face. The fact that it was hanging from a hat gave credulity to his belief.

Optimist1 Fri 22-Nov-13 07:52:47

P G Wodehouse : She looked as if she had been poured into her clothes and had forgotten to say "when."
Also : I could see that, if not actually disgruntled, he was far from being gruntled

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