Short Stories, Irish literature, Classics, Modern Fiction, Contemporary Literary Fiction, The Japanese Novel, Post Colonial Asian Fiction, The Legacy of the Austro-Hungarian Empire and quality Historical Novels are Among my Interests

Wednesday, August 21, 2019

Three Men in a Boat - A Novel by Jerome K. Jerome - 1889

"Let your boat of life be light, packed with only what you need - a homely home and simple pleasures, one or two friends, worth the name, someone to love and someone to love you, a cat, a dog, and a pipe or two, enough to eat and enough to wear, and a little more than enough to drink; for thirst is a dangerous thing. ” 

Jerome K. Jerome, Three Men in a Boat

Jerome K. Jerome

May 2 1859 - Caldmore, England

June 27, 1927- Northampton, England 

Until he published Three Men in a Boat in 1889 Jerome supported his family through journalism and playwrighting.  Three Men in a Boat changed everything for the family.  It became an instant success.  It sold in the next twenty years over one million copies and has never gone out of print.  Jerome had the security now to write as he wished but would never come close to the commercial success of Three Men in a Boat.  To this day it is often listed as one of the funniest novels ever written.  

 As the story opens three men are discussing their various illnesses.  George, Jerome, and Harris have been friends for a long time.  They decide their illnesses are caused by over work, though from what we don't learn.  They consider and reject the idea of a sea voyage or a country trip.  The country trip is dismissed as dull and Harris tells a story about his brother in law getting sea sick.  They decide a two week trip on the Thames, accompanied by a dog.  

I don't want to see spoil your fun, and this is truly a funny novel.  The book was originally intended to be a guide book for a two week boat trip from Kingston on the Thames to Oxford.  (In my post read research I learned all the pubs and inns mentioned are still open and lots of people recreate the trip.). All sorts of crazy things happen.  Lots on interesting people are encountered.  A fully sober day does not willingly pass.

This strikes me as a very English work.  The characters would be at home in a Saki story.  It is light hearted and funny.  

There  is a delightful movie online on YouTube.

There is even a Jerome K. Jerome society

My thanks to Max u for his endorsement of this book.  I am happy
to pass this along to you.

Mel u

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