Best of
Comedy

1997

Men at Arms: The Play


Terry Pratchett - 1997
    Since the captain of the City Watch has left the force to become a gentleman, Discworld is in search of a few good cops. And being a cop in this unpredictable universe is no easy job, so the search goes on for a few good trolls, dwarves, and such.

My Family Right Or Wrong


Ephraim Kishon - 1997
    Light, humerous, and entertaining.

Enter Jeeves: 15 Early Stories


P.G. Wodehouse - 1997
    Many are unaware, however, that Bertie had a prototype — Reggie Pepper — who stumbled into the same worrying situations involving old school chums with romantic troubles, irate female relatives, threatening suitors, and other troublemakers.This is the only collection to contain the first eight Jeeves short stories as well as the complete Reggie Pepper series. Included are such delightful tales as "Extricating Young Gussie," "The Aunt and the Sluggard," Leave It to Jeeves," "Jeeves and the Hard-Boiled Egg," "Absent Treatment, "Rallying Round Clarence," "Concealed Art," and more.Awash in an eternal glow of old-boy camaraderie, these stories offer hours of delightfully diverting entertainment sure to recaptivate Wodehouse fans of old as well as tickling the fancy of new readers, who will soon find themselves caught up in the splendidly superficial antics of Messrs. Wooster, Jeeves, Pepper, et al.

McBroom's Wonderful One-Acre Farm: Three Tall Tales


Sid Fleischman - 1997
    But McBroom knows he's got the better of the bargain when the pond dries up to reveal an acre of soil so rich that seeds spring up into full-grown plants in no time and even nickels grow into quarters.

The Simpsons: A Complete Guide to Our Favorite Family


Matt Groening - 1997
    Today, The Simpsons is the longest-running animated series of all time (dethroning The Flintstones in February 1997), and an intrinsic part of pop culture.The Simpsons Complete Guide to your Favourite Show is a celebration of this family's phenomenal decade. Arranged by season, the book covers each episode of the television show, with the special episodes (the annual Halloween show, "Who Shot Mr. Burns?" and "Krusty Gets Kancelled") receiving eyeball-busting two-page spreads. In addition, special sidebars are sprinkled throughout, showing:Simpsons firstsBart's chalkboard linesTop HomerismsAn Itchy & Scratchy filmographyA Springfield timelineThings the audience may have missedHighlighting the best of every show, The Simpsons is the ultimate celebration of the cartoon family that has kept the world in stitches. It is the ultimate must-have for all Simpsons aficionados.

Clerks & Chasing Amy


Kevin Smith - 1997
    Clerks was the independent film success story of 1994, winning the Prix de la Jeunesse and the International Critics Week Award at Cannes, and the Filmmakers' Trophy at Sundance. Set in the everyday world of a New Jersey QuickStop and its adjacent video store, the film revolves around the obsessions, love lives, and friendships of the clerks. Janet Maslin of the New York Time called it "a buoyant comedy...and exuberant display of ingenuity," and Kenneth Turan of the Los Angeles Times raves, "Clerks is boisterous and irreverently funny...an example of what is best and most hopeful about the American independent film scene."

McAuslan in the Rough


George MacDonald Fraser - 1997
    Wodehouse did for the English.

Into the Twilight, Endlessly Grousing


Patrick F. McManus - 1997
    In McManus's world, nothing is what it should be. All steaks should be chicken-fried, strong coffee is drunk by the light of a campfire, and fishing trips consist of men acting like boys and boys behaving like the small animals we've always assumed they were.

The Complete Plays of Gilbert and Sullivan


W.S. Gilbert - 1997
    Gilbert's verses for Sullivan's music are the most fastidiously turned and inventively rhymed in all lyric comedy. As the Savoy Operas enter their second century on a swell of renewed popularity, Gilbert's reputation as the supreme wordsmith of light opera remains secure. Complete and authentic, these are the librettos on which modern performances and recordings are based. Scattered among the songs are over seventy of the amusing, quirky pictures Gilbert drew to illustrate them. A chronology prepared for this edition sketches the authors' lives and careers. This is a book that no lover of Gilbert and Sullivan, musical comedy, or indeed the English theater will want to be without.

State by State with the State: An Uninformed, Poorly Researched Guide to the US


The State - 1997
    From a popular comedy troupe that found fame with a stint on MTV comes for the first time a printed version of its irreverent, topical, and odd-ball humor in the form of a mock travel guide covering all fifty states in America.

Men In Black


Steve Perry - 1997
    That alien beings are here--now--walking among us in human form. These men are members of an agency dedicated to tracking and policing the movements of these aliens--a top secret organization known only as...Men in Black.James Edwards is a tenacious, streetwise NYPD cop who's recruited by Agent Kay of the Men in Black. He will step into a world where his identity will be erased, where nothing is what it seems on the surface. His first case will threaten to make Earth the battleground for two warring races...and end humanity's rule in a fiery apocalypse.

The Riddle of Scheherazade: And Other Amazing Puzzles


Raymond M. Smullyan - 1997
    “The most entertaining logician and set theorist who ever lived” (Martin Gardner) gives us an encore to The Lady or the Tiger?-a fiendishly clever, utterly captivating new collection of 225 brainteasers, puzzles, and paradoxes.

Living Somewhere Between Estrogen and Death


Barbara Johnson - 1997
    Living Somewhere Between Estrogen and Death is your wise and witty guide to the joys and challenges of aging gleefully."They say the best way to grow old is not to be in a hurry about it and Lord knows, I've put it off for as long as I could," says Barbara. But old age happens without any effort on our part. If you're alive, you're getting older. So what happens when you find yourself between menopause and LARGE PRINT? This best-selling author offers a delightful recipe for living life to the fullest in your later years and spices it with loads of laughter. She shows how she came to her own decision to age ferociously instead of gracefully.From savoring the "here and now" to preparing for our glorious future in heaven, Living Somewhere Between Estrogen and Death is a lighthearted and encouraging book on the joys and problems of growing older. You'll laugh at Barbara Johnson's zany insights on aging.

Jackie Brown


Quentin Tarantino - 1997
    From Quentin Tarantino, the creator of Pulp Fiction, comes Jackie Brown, a crime caper based about an attractive stewardess who supplements her income by smuggling cash into the country for an illegal arms dealer-until the day federal agents bust her.

Tundra


Chad Carpenter - 1997
    This is an important addition to any self-respecting bathroom library!

Never Swim Alone and This is a Play


Daniel MacIvor - 1997
    [MacIvor is a writer with an angular sense of humour and an uncommon knack for probing basic elements and truths of human behaviour." ?Vit Wagner, Toronto StarThis Is a Play is a hilarious postmodern romp through the interior lives of actors in a bad play."Ingenious, whimsical, a lyrical lunacy in the writing, This Is A Play is a theatre experience comedy you might associate with Tom Stoppard." ?Liam Lacey, Globe and Mail

Not Her Real Name and Other Stories


Emily Perkins - 1997
    There's "Let's Go," the story of a young couple's apathetic wanderings on a trip to discover the real Prague; "You Can Hear the Boats Go By," the story of ex-lovers who cope with their chance meeting in a supermarket in the most childish way; and "Barking," the mad rant of a drama student pissed off by Clown class. Not Her Real Name presents an essential guide to postmodern romance, to the vagaries of city life, and to a chronically self-absorbed generation whose love affairs are never as good as the last movies they've seen.

Jeeves and the Hard-Boiled Egg and other stories


P.G. Wodehouse - 1997
    Sir Pelham Grenville Wodehouse (1881-1975) published more than 120 books.

Second from Last in the Sack Race


David Nobbs - 1997
    Born into poverty, saddled with a born loser and parrot-strangler for a dad, short sighted and ungainly, young Henry Pratt doesn't exactly have a head start in life.But in David Nobbs's brilliantly funny evocation of a Yorkshire boyhood, unathletic and over-imaginative little Pratt proves he can stick up for himself with the stoic good nature of the great British underdog

The Collected Short Plays of Thornton Wilder, Volume 1


Thornton Wilder - 1997
    Volume One of the collected short plays by one of the greatest American playwrights of the Twentieth Century.

Bouncing Back: I've Survived Everything... and I Mean Everything...and You Can Too!


Joan Rivers - 1997
    -- I've Been Through It All. This degree comes not on parchment but on gauze, and it entitles me to tell you that there is a way to get through any misfortune." -- From Bouncing BackSurvival stratagems from Joan RiversWhatever doesn't kill you makes you strongerAnd always remember: Surviving is the best revengeLook at Alexander Graham Bell, who did 22,000 experiments before he hit on the telephone. Just a few more and he would have had call waitingWhenever I hit bottom, the only thing I think of was set down by Jerome Kern: Pick myself up, dust myself off and start all over again. Dr. Kevorkian will get no call from me, unless I think he'd look good in a brooch.A fiercely honest and moving story of how Joan Rivers, one of comedy's greatest stars, survived the worst that life could throw at her, how she hit bottom and then made it back to the top.

The Gobsmacking Galaxy


Kjartan Poskitt - 1997
    Then our galaxy was hurtling through space at the speed of light, along with billions and billions of other planets, stars, satellites, meteors, comets, asteroids, meteorites and goodness only knows what else. This gob-smacking guide gives you mind-boggling information about our galaxy...and beyond. Jump up and down with excitement as you're whisked away on a grand tour of the solar system, where you'll go skiing on Mars and meet the sad creature from Pluto. Gasp at some incredible facts about red giants, white dwarves and supernovas. Plus...find out what happens when a bloke called Sid gets too close to a black hole.

Forth And Abroad: Still Merry On Land And By Sea


Mary Francis - 1997
    In her own charming way, she relates the story - not only of the spiritual adventure of one contemplative nun, but also of the spread of contemplative life from New Mexico to Holland. Throughout the book the author explores spiritual themes about the call each person receives from God to venture forth into the spiritual unknown beyond the confines of our own "life plans" into the greater fulfillment of God's loving Providence. God gives His summons; the answer must be ours.

The Comedy of Survival: Literary Ecology and a Play Ethic


Joseph W. Meeker - 1997
    Here, Joseph Meeker expands upon his consideration of comedy and tragedy, not as dramatic motifs for humor and sadness but rather as forms of adaptive behavior in the natural world that either promote our survival (comedy) or estrange us from other life forms (tragedy). In this third major edition of his classic work, Meeker examines the role of literature in shaping such behavior. Drawing upon centuries of western writing from Dante to Shakespeare to E. O. Wilson, he demonstrates the universality of comedy in both human and animal behavior and shows how the comic mode helps us to live in harmony with nature. Meeker then defines the tragic view of life, interweaving that behavior with exploitation of the environment. With imagination and flair, the author also introduces the idea of a play ethic, as opposed to a work ethic, and demonstrates the importance of play as a necessary and desirable component of the comic spirit. Within a growing body of environmental literature dealing with spirituality, ethics, ecofeminism, nature writing, and alternative lifestyles, Meeker's is a one-of-a-kind book, combining elements of literary criticism, ethology, New Age thinking, and personal narrative. Full of provocative twists and turns, The Comedy of Survival is a book for literary critics, environmentalists, human ecologists, philosophers, and anthropologists. Many will find much to ponder in this clear explication of how we might become better stewards of the Earth.

When a Man Loves a Walnut


Gavin Edwards - 1997
    Mishearing the words of such classic rock artists as the Beatles and Bruce Springsteen, as well as alternative bands like Nine Inch Nails and Pearl Jam, Gavin Edwards provides an assemblage of more than 250 misconstrued song lyrics. 90 line drawings.

The Are You Being Served? Stories: Camping in and Other Fiascos


Jeremy Lloyd - 1997
    Spinning extravagant riffs on favorite episodes, the creator of this legendary British comedy series brings us seven hilarious short stories, never before published in the U.S.

The Collected Short Plays of Thornton Wilder, Volume 2


Thornton Wilder - 1997
    The second and concluding volume of Thornton Wilder's short plays.

The Scrapper


Brendan O'Carroll - 1997
    Sparrow's dream is the World Lightweight Championship. But when he finally has it in his grasp he can't deliver the finishing punch. Sparrow's life falls apart, and fifteen years later he's a bum, a loser. Then something happens that convinces him that there are still things worth fighting for ...

Advice for a Happy Marriage: From Miss Dietz's Third-Grade Class


Debi Dietz Crawford - 1997
    In it are musings ranging from the truly wise to the uproariously funny. Now, Dietz Crawford shares these nuggets of wisdom with readers everywhere. 20 color illustrations.

America A to Z: People, Places, Customs & Culture


Reader's Digest Association - 1997
    More than 1000 alphabetically arranged entries bring to light little-known facts, hidden histories, and sometimes strange stories about familiar people, places, events, inventions, fads, foods, and much more. Hundreds of illustrations -- including vintage photographs and woodcuts, drawings by well-known artists like Norman Rockwell, and portraits of movie stars, writers, entertainers, politicians, and other public figures -- enhance every page."America A To Z" reveals the origins of everything from blue jeans to hot dog buns, the Boy Scouts to the League of Women Voters. It introduces the heroes of the Alamo, the occupants of the Oval Office, the denizens of the locker rooms in every sport, and the men and women who have exercised their creative genius in laboratories, automobile factories, and fashion showrooms, on typewriters and piano keyboards. Readers will peek behind the scenes at the FBI and the Mall of America, get the inside scoop on Walter Winchell, and find out what Paul Revere really shouted on his ride through Boston, which children's author got his start writing advertising copy, and who invented Lincoln Logs.A great family reference, "America A To Z" makes it fun for kids to look up facts, for adults to journey down memory lane, and for everyone to get a close up look at America's rich and diverse history and culture.