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Lucky Jim Mass Market Paperback – 1 Mar 1970


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Product details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd; New impression edition (Mar 1970)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0140016481
  • ISBN-13: 978-0140016482
  • Product Dimensions: 17.8 x 10.4 x 1.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (106 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 451,645 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

3.7 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

46 of 49 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 4 Nov 2001
Format: Paperback
Lucky Jim is one of Amis's best works, filled with intense humour, false bravado and absurd characters. The 'hero' Jim Dixon, is intially engulfed by the diverse scope of the eccentric social group with which he finds himself into at University, his students and collegues alike causing him no end of problems. Speaking as a student I find the novel to be in parts painfully close to reality, particularly in Jim's dealings with his over-keen student Michie, and the general irreverent nature of university life, despite the fact that it is set over forty years ago, it is still a humourous and well-recorded version of campus life. Overall the main strengths of the novel are its varied cast of characters whose imbecility, social ineptitude or plain naivety constantly amuse the reader throughout, whilst the climax is a fitting end to Jim's trials both socially, intellectually and morally. Deeply funny.
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25 of 28 people found the following review helpful By El Fidela on 13 Mar 2007
Format: Paperback
I am in complete agreement with the 14 year old boy who found this absolute classic in with his dad's old books. I bought this for £2 out of the university bookshop bargain bin when I was in first year at university ( I should add I am 27 so no old fogey) and vaguely remembered seeing Terry-Thomas as Bertrand ("AH SAAAAM") in some old black and white sick-day film on a tuesday afternoon. I started reading it on the train home and didn't stop till I was done. I was actually shocked to see that people hated this and found it dated or "middle-class" (I assume that's meant to be pejorative?). This has to be one of the funniest novels of all time - particularly all the fighting talk "Would you like a slap?" "Not much" and Jim's ability to turn any situation to his complete disadvantage.

I now have a theory that the reason this novels appeals so much to some and not to others is that the world is divided into Bertrands and Jims - the former definitely would hate this book. They'd be into magic realism or something. If you like this you will almost definitely like "Take a Girl like You" which is almost the same book with the characters shifted round a bit but slightly less funny - apart from Julian Ormerod who is pant-wettingly hilarious. Every time I read either of these I crease up and for a long time after I read Lucky Jim even thinking about it was enough to set me off. Buy two copies cos you'll loan one to your friend and never see it again.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 8 April 2002
Format: Paperback
I'm not one of those people who ever laughs out loud at any book. However, even I found myself emitting the occasional snort at the humorous situations that Jim Dixon gets himself into. Nearly fifty years on it's still all relevant: the English man's clumsiness with women, the academic pomposity and the battle with one's superiors.
Amis builds up the characters wonderfully and writes in such a fluent and full style. This was my first Kingsley Amis book, but it won't be my last.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By anozama on 25 Jun 2012
Format: Paperback
God knows what Kingsley Amis must have been like in person; his ability to find fun in everyone's otherwise irritating and frustrating behaviour is astonishing.

Filled with extraordinarily, almost manically descriptive, humourous observations, this book is enormously entertaining and uproariously funny - a comic masterpiece.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By benjab on 28 Mar 2009
Format: Paperback
This is easily one of the best, funniest books i have ever read. The humour is perfectly excecuted and caught me completely off-guard at various points- it really creeps up on you and will leave you in stiches if you are able to empathise with the protaganist, a very sympathetic character. Even though some characters could be considered a little one-dimensional, this seems not to hinder the brilliance of the novel. A classic.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 8 Mar 2001
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I first read this book years ago and have just re-read it, wondering whether it would still make me crack up. It did! I read ages ago that what makes people laugh is having your characters say or do things that everybody thinks or does, but nobody ever talks about. I still think the episode where Jim burns the sheets, tries to cover it up and dreads getting found out, is absolutely classic. Of course this is practically a historical novel now; anyone with an elderly relative who constantly says, 'We were damn hard up...' should read this. Poor old Jim, wondering whether he can afford another half... For anyone who wasn't there, and doesn't believe it really ever existed, it's also a brilliant insight into the pre-pill, pre shagshagshag era. Read this, pity your aged relatives, and have a really good laugh.
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36 of 43 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 9 Aug 2001
Format: Paperback
I'm only 14 and until now I've settled for reading military novels by the likes of Andy McNab. Now, however, a whole new world of exciting and funny books has opened up to me! It was just pure luck that I was bored one day and decided to dust off one of my dads old books! There are rumours that the humour in the book is now dated, rubbish! I didn't actually know that it was not present day until they mentioned the war and even then I had to check the publishing date to believe it! The part when Jim goes to the evening of festivities at the Professors,get's drunk and makes a fool of himself is quite simply hilarious!.... Amazing stuff...I'd reccommend it to anybody with a sense of humour.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Jonny on 31 Oct 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Although the subject matter is a little dated, "Lucky Jim's" humour still stands today. The main character is one with whom most can identify and the other characters are equally appealing or appalling. A very enjoyable read.
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