I absolutely adore books that make me laugh. I am not saying that I don’t read tearjerkers. I read many of those too, but life would not be tolerable without the funny ones. When I have had a bad day, when things are going wrong, when I need a lift, the giggly, goofy, giddy books can turn everything around.
Here are some of the books that have made me laugh, though you should be warned, a few of these same books also had the power to make me cry.
Lane Smith sets up comedic situations and just makes me belly laugh and once in awhile there are tears, but not the sad kind. I’m just laughing so hard. Smith’s humor can be more than a little twisted and I love that about him. With The Happy Hocky Family, Smith pokes a bit of fun at the old early readers, but also creates wonderful cringe worthy situations with this rather accident prone family. I cannot read it without laughter and smiles.
Jack Prelutsky delivers some fantastic poetry in a Pizza the size of the Sun. Two tried and true poems reside in this book. Children of all ages love to hear, “I Was Walking in a Circle” particularly once they realize that they too can annoy the daylights out of someone by reciting this never-ending bit of fun. The other favorite is “I Often Repeat Repeat Myself” which also plays with repetition. His clever word play gets me every single time. What’s great is that there are simply tons of great poems in this collection.
Calvin and Hobbes really just speak for themselves. No explanation required.
Having gone through a “brace face” episode in my past, I totally related to this completely fabulous graphic novel and think that Raina Telgemeier managed to create a classic.
The stupid, stupid rat creatures just crack me up. I love their quiche references and endless petty squabbling. On top of that, the Bone series has the amazing ability to bring children back into the reading fold. I have had students tell me they hate reading then after giving Bone a try, magically, they are back in love. Thank you Jeff Smith!
In the middle of a virtual reality game, Giannine finds out that due to damage to the equipment, she is trapped in the game, which may cause brain damage unless she can exit the game, but the only way to exit is to win. As in most video games, the only way to get to the end is to try over, and over, and over again. This totally reminded me of the movie Groundhog Day. The chapter titles are a hoot too.
The cover of The Wee Free Men did not inspire me, but I heard so many good things about Terry Pratchett that I finally gave it a try. I am so glad I ignored the cover. Those little blue men are flat out hilarious and I love how Tiffany Aching deals with the little scallywags. They steal sheep, they drink waaaay too much and get into fights at every opportunity, but they love pretty strongly too.
Sherman Alexie manages to crack me up over and over in this book, but he also breaks my heart. This is one of those that bring out both the laughter and the tears as Junior leaves his Spokane Indian Reservation to go to an all-white high school where the only other Indian is the school mascot. This is one of my all time favorites.
Another laughter and tears book was Will Grayson, Will Grayson. I highly recommend the audio version. The readers were completely awesome and you get to hear the songs from the Broadway style musical at the end too. Here is the first line, When I was little, my dad used to tell me, “Will, you can pick your friends, and you can pick your nose, but you can’t pick your friends nose.” Of course, we soon learn that his father was fallible.
When I discovered that The Princess Bride was actually a book, I had to read it immediately. I was not disappointed. It was love at first read. Action, adventure, love, fight scenes, and truly everything you could want in a romance come together in this hilarious fairytale spoof.
So, when you need a spoon full of sugar, a little pep in your step, or some sunshine in your day, one of these titles may just do the trick. I wish you laughter!
Crystal Brunelle is a Library Media Specialist who dabbles in photography & technology when she’s not busy with family, running, or reading. She is a proud member of the #nerdybookclub. You can find her on Twitter as @librarygrl2 and on her blog at http://readingtl.blogspot.com.