Three Men in a Boat Kindle Edition
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- ASIN : B004UJL1KK
- Publication date : March 30, 2011
- Language : English
- File size : 349 KB
- Simultaneous device usage : Unlimited
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- Screen Reader : Supported
- Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
- X-Ray : Enabled
- Word Wise : Enabled
- Print length : 199 pages
- Lending : Not Enabled
- Best Sellers Rank: #987,635 in Kindle Store (See Top 100 in Kindle Store)
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from the United States
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The print is perhaps 10 pt at best, which for older eyes like mine is very challenging to see. The line spacing is exceedingly tight, which makes the small type face that much harder to read.
All that might be bearable on a smaller page but the pages of this book are nearly 7 inches across, and the printing runs right smack up to the edges of the page with a scant ½” margin. Each line runs approx. 95 characters across. (by comparison, the most dense computer programming text books on my shelf run fewer than 70 characters across).
The result is a book that is absolutely fatiguing to try and read. Tracking from line to line is a chore.
Clearly the publisher was looking to extract the maximum profit out of an old and popular title by cramming the content into the fewest pages possible. My advice is either buy the kindle version, or skip this and find a better pressing.
"Three Men in a Boat (To Say Nothing of the Dog)" follows the author, his two friends Harris and George, and a tagalong fox terrier named Montmorency as they plan a boating holiday along the Thames river. They anticipate a leisurely time taking in the sights of the river, camping out, and enjoying the fresh air. What they get instead is unexpected comedy as they struggle with their uncooperative boat, bicker with one another, and have unexpected run-ins with colorful characters along the way. And while the author occasionally pauses to wax poetic about the scenery and the history of the land they pass through, he's also not above recalling some disastrously hilarious anecdotes... or poking fun at his companions and himself along the way.
While some of the content of this book might be slightly dated nowadays, there's plenty of humor to be had that's fresh and relatable today. Many can relate to some of the comic bits of this book -- going to a party to find someone necking in every corner, a singer who's utterly ignorant of their own terrible singing skills, and dogs that look adorably innocent but are secretly troublemakers at their furry hearts. There's even a section where the author reads a medical text and convinces himself he has nearly every disease in the book -- the 19th-century equivalent of "Googling your symptoms." And there's an unexpectedly prophetic bit where the author wonders if the boring everyday objects of their age will become priceless collectibles to people in the year 2000...
The story does wander a fair bit, and the author quite often pauses in recounting their journey to bring up some event prior to the story. I forgive most of these asides because they're hilarious, but some people might not appreciate the frequent deviations from the plot.
As for the characters of this book... if George and Harris are based on real people, it's a wonder they made it down and up the river in one piece. I'm sure many of their flaws are exaggerated for comedy purposes, but they can be so inept and lazy that it's hilarious. These are characters that would be right at home in a Monty Python sketch... which is perhaps the point.
A word on this particular Kindle edition -- it appears as if it originally contained pictures, but said pictures were cut out, leaving their captions behind. This is a little annoying, but it doesn't ruin the book for me. Just a warning, however, to other readers...
A delightfully funny read that remains fresh and relevant even a hundred years later, "Three Men in a Boat" was just as good as Reddit claimed, and great for anyone who needs a good laugh. Who says that classic literature has to be stuffy, slow, and boring anyhow?
The narrator is honest enough to present both the good and bad of himself and his friends, and also ironic enough to rant about one aspect of life then some chapters later, as circumstances flip, rant about exactly the opposite aspect. It is clearly deliberate, and quite delicious to discover.
I also had some genuine "Aha" moments, as I realized that people of the recent-ish past are essentially the same as we are today. So, we get a vignette of 'boat rage', where you could replace 'boat' with 'car' and be reading an account from this week. And this pearl of wisdom:
"Will it be the same in the future? Will the prized treasures of to-day always be the cheap trifles of the day before? Will rows of our willow-pattern dinner-plates be ranged above the chimneypieces of the great in the years 2000 and odd?"
There are some overly flowery/boring passages, but many less than I expected for a book of the times. Indeed, it is quite pacy, and very straightforward to read. And honestly, it's free on Kindle, so it's not even like you can't afford to give it a go!
Three Men in a Boat is one of those rare classics that seems to come, as it were, out of nowhere, and to defy the odds. It is as fresh, as funny and as human as the day it was published, in 1889. The relationship between the three guy buddies - the banter and the teasing - is thoroughly recognizable.
Reminds me of Mark Twain. Gentle humor, and great sarcasm. Many chuckles and frequently I laughed aloud. Great language, a pleasure to read.
I think it is the apex of a British humor literature at the same time being a heart warming story of three friends travel across the landscape inhabited with all sort of characters.
Top reviews from other countries
Jerome wrote this soon after he was married, and the happiness of that period of his life pervades the book.
It is quite well laid out, the only negative being that the illustrations are replaced with the name of the thing illustrated, which has quite a disconcerting effect.
I really was pleasantly surprised. In trying to explain it to a friend I realised that there is no plot to speak of and nothing really happens for the entireity of the novel. It really does do what it says on the tin! There are reams of anecdotes throughout, to highlight the monumental silliness of the three central characters (and the dog) and silly for me is akin to fun; a really daft bit of escapism from the dourness of a wet, cold September in recession-hit Britain. I rarely laugh out loud at a book and when I saw that other reviewers had made this claim, I was skeptical, but I have to admit, I did indeed chuckle audibly throughout.
I can appreciate that this won't be to everyone's taste - I have recently read that it was actually written as a children's book so this probably says more about my immature sense of humour than anything else! If, like me, you enjoy linguistic slapstick with a good dose of tongue-in-cheek, you will probably find this to be a very amusing way to pass the time.
His anecdotes are a masterclass in irony and sarcasm - delivered in the most hilarious, and gentle manner.
The Kindle edition (as many reviewers have noted) does have the odd, stray caption to an illustration which is absent and can be a little off putting but you do get used to it before too long.