Author: Dara O’Briain
ISBN: 9780141046662 / 014104666X
As funny as I find Dara’s stand-up shows, his hosting of Mock the Week and appearances on Three Men and … “boats”, I found this book less than amusing. It was sold to me as a humourous book on the English persona (not unlike Bill Bryson’s “Notes from a Small Island“), but actually it’s a diary of the comic’s interactions with, and observations of punters attending his shows as he tours England with the occasional jump to Dublin for a boost.
This tour diary gives a run-down of the audience members he spoke to, a description of the theatre, some snippets from the show, few of which were amusing, and then a generalisation about the English which Dara then proceeds to attempt to prove false. That’s pretty much it. It was dry reading that felt like it dragged: I genuinely laughed about four times in the book. I will say that I have watched several of Dara’s performances and appearances and much of the material in “Tickling the English” I had already encountered. Still, I really pushed myself to finish in case it got better and reflected the reviews it’s received. It didn’t.
I’m afraid I just can’t recommend “Tickling the English“.
Rating: 1 out of a possible 5.