Saturday, March 19, 2005


A Pint of Guinness: My Part in Its Downfall

Memoirist David Monagan gives his top ten Irish travelogues in The Guardian, and at the top of his list of recommended reads is The Third Policeman, by Flann O'Brien. The righteous folk of Dalkey Archive have it in print, and it's one of those books that I keep hearing that I "have to read" but, ahem, haven't read yet. Monagan's description certainly makes it sound intriguingly bonkers:

Hilarious and mind-bending, it is set in a two-dimensional police station that turns out to be Irish hell. Framed for murder by quare constables - who are obsessed with the atomic properties of bicycles and struggle to maintain the barometric balance of Ireland - the protagonist occasionally wanders down the road to heaven, but can never bring any of the riches out.

Curiously, Monagan also cites Spike Milligan in his top 10 list. Milligan's work is scarcely known in this country, and easily overlooked because comics are not always known to produce brilliantly comedic books. But Milligan's Adolf Hitler: My Part In His Downfall is well worth tracking down -- it is a small comedic gem of memoir written by a man suitably unimpressed with both himself and with stuffed shirts alike.

<< Home

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?