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Puckoon [Paperback]

Spike Milligan
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (44 customer reviews)
RRP: 8.99
Price: 6.29 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over 10. Details
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Book Description

25 Jan 1973

Puckoon, Spike Milligan's first novel bursts at the seams with superb comic characters involved in unbelievably likely troubles on the Irish border.

It's 1924 and the Boundary Commission is deciding on the new line between Northern Ireland and the Irish Republic. With much pushing and shoving, the border finds it's way down the middle of Puckoon, dividing house from outhouse, man from wife, and pub chairs from bars. Something must be done!

'Desperately funny, vivid, vulgar' Sunday Times

'Milligan is the Great God to all of us' John Cleese

'The Godfather of Alternative Comedy' Eddie Izzard

'That absolutely glorious way of looking at things differently. A great man' Stephen Fry

Spike Milligan was one of the greatest and most influential comedians of the twentieth century. Born in India in 1918, he served in the Royal Artillery during WWII in North Africa and Italy. At the end of the war, he forged a career as a jazz musician, sketch-show writer and performer, before joining forces with Peter Sellers and Harry Secombe to form the legendary Goon Show. Until his death in 2002, he had success as on stage and screen and as the author of over eighty books of fiction, memoir, poetry, plays, cartoons and children's stories.

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Puckoon + Adolf Hitler: My Part in his Downfall (Milligan Memoirs 1)
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Product details

  • Paperback: 160 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin; New Impression edition (25 Jan 1973)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0140023747
  • ISBN-13: 978-0140023749
  • Product Dimensions: 0.6 x 11.4 x 18.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (44 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 4,540 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

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Product Description

About the Author

Spike Milligan was born at Ahmednagar in India in 1918. He received his first education in a tent in the Hyderabad Sindh desert and graduated from there, through a series of Roman Catholic schools in India and England, to the Lewisham Polytechnic.

He then plunged into the world of Show Business, seduced by his first stage appearance, at the age of eight, in the nativity play of his Poona convent school. He began his career as a band musician, but has since become famous as a humorous scriptwriter and actor in both films and broadcasting. Spike received an honorary CBE in 1992.

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Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
4.8 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
80 of 80 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The funniest book ever written 8 Sep 2001
Here's a short story. In 1963 I was on a military Aircraft flying to South America from England. The plane was full of soldiers going to British Guiana. It was a long flight. So to pass the time I went up to the front and read this book through the address system. The pilots could hear this as well. So much laughter went on that we nearly crashed onto the runway in Gander Newfoundland. I was asked very nicely not to continue since it was too dangerous to the safety of the flight. But so funny is the book that all the passengers prevailed upon me to keep on going. I sware that this is a true story. This is simply the very funniest book ever written, and thereby one of the most dangerous. Cheers: Private Grahame Rhodes 216. Late of the Kings Own Royal Border Regiment.
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
This book sustained me through a very strict English Boarding School in Swaziland, Africa. It houses some of the best one and multi- liners ever written and is the sort of book best read by you and a friend, because when the first reader falls over in a fit of laughter, the next can take over and maintain the momentum.
For example: in an attempt to get rid of her husband, one of the characters in the book goes to her attorney. He explains that just wanting a divorce doesn't necessarily achieve a divorce in Ireland, that she must prove some form of abuse or unfaithfulness. "Has he ever been unfaithful?" The attorney asks... "Aha, I think we've got him there!" Cries the wife, "I know for a fact he wasn't the father of me last two children!"
Then there are the law partners who scratch their heads in amazement letting little showers of dandruff accumulate on their desks as they ponder over the will of Dan Doonan. They don't know how to execute his will, but one thing they do know is that it will take a lot of time and money, because Dan Doonan died leaving everything... to himself!
The the poor, powerfully built farmer O'Mara, who, after being deserted by his wife and losing his children, was cut from a man who 'laughed and loved life, to a walking dead.'
From helpless laughter to the depths of empathy, the reader is tossed about emotionally like a leaf in a stream and, for the most part, falls in love with the little imaginary town of Pukoon. To say this book allows one a better understanding of the Irish is a gross understatement.
Well worth reprinting and well worth the purchase price.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A world without Milligan 4 Mar 2003
By Pansori
Even though Spike's comedy and success did not reach across the waters to the U.S., it was nice to go to bed thinking that someone like Spike was around. But now he's gone and oh, how he is missed! His humor is unsurpassed; and completly his own. Puckoon is a prime example, and a great introduction to his comedy. Puckoon is Milligan being Milligan. The novel moves along at a brisk pace, even when it seems little is happening. Reading everything coming together at the end is pure delight. I can't recommend this book enough... the only drawback is that it's so short it leaves you wanting more.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Classic Milligan has lost none of it's spark 21 April 2002
By A Customer
I read this for the first time when I was 15, and coming back to it I find that I'd forgotten how easy it is to lose yourself in the mad world of Milligan. Only an idiot would be concerned with the lack of plot in a book that bursts with energy and ideas like this does. Oh, and it's cripplingly funny too
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars punkoon 28 Jun 2005
By A Customer
Few books I've read have made me laugh out loud ( the only other I can think of is "without feathers" by Woody Allen), this book will, if you read it on the train you'll get strange looks from other passangers.The plot may seem to jump from one thing to another but comes together in the end ,along the way there are some fantastic bits like the pub that has 2 prices for beer depending on which side of the border you are on, only Spike could think uo such an idea. Buy it and enjoy the mad ride.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars It is meant to be funny, not precise! 30 Jun 1999
By A Customer
Neil Wellman's desperate clichés (replete with spelling and grammatical errors) about Spike's 'illness' do nothing to aid prospective readers. The whole book is unhinged, and is meant to be so. The sustained comic brilliance is reason enough to read this book, the hair-spltters who winge about the plot should stick with Martin Amis and leave Milligan for those who appreciate him.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Work of genius 20 Sep 2012
When I was about 12, my elder brother (then 15) read this during a Summer holiday. I don't often recall him laughing at anything but was amazed to see him in fits of laughter reading this book.

Spike Milligan is one of those unassailable comedians who every famous comedian tends to regard as a spiritual godfather. Although very famous, I did not always appreciate the humour.

Moving forward 35 years, I have finally got round to reading Puckoon, feeling a strange glow of nostalgia seeing that Penguin has never tried to repackage the book with a new cover - its exactly the same as it was in the mid 70s and presumably the early 60s.

I loved reading this book - it really is a first rate comic read. The characters are hilarious and the absurd dialogue had me in fits of laughter during my daily commute.

There are a few things that I find worth noting about this book though. The first is that Spike Milligan, for all the jollity, is also a very intelligent writer. I am pretty certain that if I had read it age 15, I would not have picked up most of the artistic and literary references. Is is definitely a book to savour and re-read.

The other thing I noticed was its rather 'Irish' whimsy and absurdity. Latterly, I have really enjoyed the books of (and film adaptations of books by) Roddy Doyle, like the Commitments, Paddy Clarke Ha Ha Ha and for children, the Rover Adventures. Coming to Puckoon, I can only assume that Roddy Doyle is a fan of this novel. There is definitely an air of surrealism in this novel, with the author breaking through the Fourth Wall and telling the reader how he is altering the story.

I must say that book also cheered me up. I had been reading some fairly depressing and heavyweight books and this provided the best tonic.

Highly recommended.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant
I got rid of my original copy to a charity shop and suddenly got urge to read it again, Superb.
Published 3 days ago by R. B. Wood
5.0 out of 5 stars oh yes, I remember Eccles!
Dear man, I met him in Camden once, he was brilliant . Not so much Irish, more ---so much more
Published 2 months ago by robert cotton
5.0 out of 5 stars Xmas gift
Once again my son - in law was sooooo pleased with this as well as he a big Spike Milligan fan.

This was delivered as promised and carefully packaged.
Published 3 months ago by Mrs. P. Long
5.0 out of 5 stars A "between the Lines" read
Spike demonstrated his psychological instability in this most entertaining "frolic" through life. He needed to be loved and to be needed. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Douglas iles
5.0 out of 5 stars Still funny after all these years
I read this book as a teenager and laughed 'till I cried bought it for a friend recently and couldn't help dipping in and it still delivered a wonderfully well written and funny... Read more
Published 4 months ago by Zooney
5.0 out of 5 stars Spike Milligans Puckoon
This book must be the funniest book ever written, the man was a comic genius.
I first read the book while in the RAF years ago and it is still as hilarious on the second... Read more
Published 5 months ago by Wing Co
3.0 out of 5 stars used copy of puckoon
not in as good of a condition as I expected - it was stated to be ''very good'' but wasn't
Published 6 months ago by paul kelly
5.0 out of 5 stars Funniest. Book. Ever.
First read this when I was about 16, and then more recently. Really is the funniest book ever.Cannot recommend it highly enough. Go buy and enjoy.
Published 6 months ago by Delta Red
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the best !
Good quality book, in very good condition on arrival. If you loved Spike Milligan you wont go wrong with this one.
Published 7 months ago by Mo
5.0 out of 5 stars Very funny
Another Milligan triumph. Comic genius at its best. Spike will always be the master of this kind of literature. Classic.
Published 8 months ago by Bigmommalulu
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