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Laughter and reading

February 1, 2012
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Flickr user: Corie Howell

Laughter and happiness is a basic emotion in all of us. From that first moment of joy parents experience upon seeing their newborn smiling, to children swapping jokes around the school playground, to people emailing funny quips to work colleagues or  telling an amusing anecdote to cajole a smile from a sick and ailing grandparent, we all love to laugh and smile.  Succeeding in making another person laugh is a prize that makes us happy too.

 
In reading, we can all find things to make us laugh. Starting with Sandra Boynton’s Blue Hat, Green Hat which has 18 month olds laughing uncontrollably,  we move onto absurdism with Dr Seuss for older kids, and then to informative fart and poo humour to make history that little bit more palatable (thank you Mr Terry Deary). Choosing reading that pokes fun at the things we take too seriously can also help keep things in perspective.

 

So what gives you the giggles? Is it a chick lit novel describing hilarious takes on the pitfalls of relationships, life and love such as described in Lisa Walker’s Liar Bird.? Perhaps parody is your thing, with its playful twists on classic literature such as Aciman and Resin’s Twitterature or Jetlag Travel Guides for the undiscerning traveller.

Are you the person who can be found chuckling to yourself as you read something understated and witty, such as the Jeeves and Wooster books by  P.G Wodehouse?  Have you ever  been known to burst into laughter as you read a joke book or a comical magazine be it Mad Magazine or Cracked.com? Maybe you’re  the person found quietly smiling to yourself  as you read tales of self deprecating comical memoirists from Gervase Phinn, Judith Lucy or David Sedaris, or  snickering at the crowd-sourced humour from memes such as Failblog, Awkward Family Photos and Damn You Autocorrect.

 
 

 Whatever  you read that tickles your funny bone, making you crack-up, cackle,  chortle, guffaw or just smile,  this is the  month to read it, as it is sure to lift your spirits and make you feel good!

The National Year of Reading is officially being launched on the 14th February, Library Lovers Day! This will surely make you smile or even laugh as there is a whole year of reading and reading promotion to look forward to. And just as the Readers’ Digest would like us to all remember – Laughter is the best medicine.

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