The narrator recalls a boy at his school who really liked to study. "He was full of weird and unnatural notions about being a credit to his parents and an honour to the school; and he yearned to win prizes and grow up and be a clever man, and had all those sorts of weak-minded ideas." If you are amused by this example of British wittiness, then you will probably enjoy reading the book. There is an appendix in the back called "Explanatory Notes" so the reader can understand the meaning of uniquely British words and phrases.
one of the best books i have every read.
This is a really fun book for Anglophiles; for Dorothy Sayers or Agatha Christie or any Golden Age detective series, or any lovers of PG Wodehouse or the like. It was written over 100 years ago, and the three "heroes" (one is the narrator) are familiar goofy British upper-crust guys who decide to row themselves up the Thames to Oxford for a two-week lark. It includes slices of English history and social commentary (with gentle satire, usually) and descriptions of the countryside that make me want to go there right now.
One does need to keep in mind that certain attitudes and prejudices current in the 1880s make an occasional appearance, that are not so acceptable now. If "Anglo white male privilege" ruins books for you, give this one a pass.
The plenteous illustrations by Paul Cox make this a totally fun read. Get out your straw hat and your Wellies, it's time for adventure!
Uncle Podger is a classic character - should be in the lexicon. I used the Project Gutenberg, since I can never finish a book on my Sony Reader in three weeks. Happily it had the illustrations, as does Twain's "Roughing It" which I've started now.
Published in 1889, over a century old, was famed for its comical writing. Reading it, trying to imagine myself during this time and watching these three friends on their escapades on the Thames River over a two week period. I just couldn't get into it and didn't find anything humourous or comical about it. Guess it doesn't translate well to the 21st century. Though a few times, ended up reading the inside of my eyelids. Great if you need some zzzz.
Very British humour from the late 19th century. If you like this sort of thing (I do) or if you have traveled by rowboat this is a pretty funny expedition. The group dynamic of the three men is well established and mirrors the foibles of any three true life adventurers, with considerable exaggeration, of course.
Not as funny as Connie Willis' "To Say Nothing of the Dog" but pretty amusing overall. A great picture of upper class Edwardian english pleasures.
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