- Save 10% on selected children’s books, compliments of Amazon Family Promotion exclusive for Prime members .
- Also check our best rated Adult Colouring Book reviews
The Ascent Of Rum Doodle Paperback – 4 Oct 2001
|New from||Used from|
Special offers and product promotions
Customers who bought this item also bought
What other items do customers buy after viewing this item?
Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
If you are a seller for this product, would you like to suggest updates through seller support?
"Wonderful. Rum Doodle does for mountaineering what Three Men in a Boat did for Thames-going or Catch-22 did for the Second World War. It is simply an account of the leader of an expedition up Rum Doodle, a 40,000 and a half foot peak in the Himalayas, in the same way that Scoop is simply a tale about newsgathering in Africa. The tone is nearer to Pooter than anyone else I can think of, but the flavour is all W.E. Bowman's own." (Sunday Times)
"I just love this book. Everything about it is nearly perfect... hugely enjoyable and brilliantly sustained." (From the introduction by Bill Bryson)
"Exceedingly funny... as if the hero of Diary of a Nobody had, in a mood of abandon, turned to mountaineering." (Dublin Magazine)
"it is an epic. It is Homeric. It is inspiring. It is very, very funny... Read it and be moved." (Books of the Month)
A new edition of W.E. Bowman's hilarious spoof, with a new introduction by Bill Bryson.See all Product description
Top customer reviews
These ‘professionals’ have the most ironic surnames like Burley, who was was anything but as he was out of sorts after failing to acclimatise to any step of their journey, the team’s medical assistance was provided by a Dr Prone who contracted everything from mumps to malaria, while Constant unintentionally offended the local porters at every available opportunity with his professed linguistic skill, and their navigator, Jungle, aptly couldn’t find the wood for the trees.
The ‘Rum Doodle’ campaign reaches farcical proportions as their specially selected liabilities hamper progress at every possible turn. The team leader, Binder (his radio code name), is a naïve shepherd with a flock that regularly outwits him. He is blissfully unaware of the reverse psychology they apply in order to avoid sharing a tent with his inexhaustible counsel.
The greatest threat to their party wasn’t in fact Binder, the altitude, or mutiny every time Constant opened his mouth, but Pong, a cook with the most frightful culinary ability to ‘demoralise’ all grown men. Strategies were developed to minimise exposure of his contribution to their endeavour but his presence was ludicrously unshakeable.
And with the exception of Binder’s incessant obsession for dredging up every team member’s fiancée status (regardless of how curious their replies are) this story is completely dominated by men. I can honestly say I hadn’t noticed the omission of female characters until the end as I was busy being carried away by their absurd behaviour and the futility of meticulous planning!
There were memorable gems of recklessness and ridicule throughout, but my absolute favourites were when the team had diagnosed the doctor as having hopes of a recovery on the basis that he hadn’t expired yet, and the moment Binder’s tears secured his face to the ice during a momentary lapse of emotional composure. Plus this one, where the leader is once again trying to raise morale …
"Poor Prone seemed quite low, and to cheer him up I encouraged him to talk about his home. Had he a fiancée? I asked. He said, no, his wife was the unsympathetic kind and his children considered one mother quite enough."
Binder’s valiant efforts to provide his calamitous conquerors with the necessary encouragement turned into an ascent of endurance rather than an expedition. I mean, exactly how many people can you lose in a crevasse before something twigs?! Loved it!
Some of the events described are so funny as to be nearly debilitating - my favourite being where the leader of the expedition becomes frozen to the glacier by icicles formed from his own tears. There are almost as many running gags as there are pages.
This is a classic of a book, which really should be better known.
(A slight but not insignificant pleasure of this version of the book is the ability to contrast the more overt comedy style of the Bill Bryson's introduction, with parody of the book itself.)
If you want a book to make you feel good and laugh out loud, you must buy this comedy classic. It realy is the funniest book you will ever read
What prompted me to write this review is that I was surfing through these pages yesterday and came across the entry for the Ascent of Rum Doodle, and looked at the other reviews, and doing that caused me to pop up in the attic and dig out the book and read it again last night. Although it had that 'time gap' quality to it, like watching an old Morecambe & Wise show that you haven't seen for years and so you can't help comparing how you feel now with how you felt when you first encountered it, and although it was so familiar that I could almost recite the jokes in it, I *still* thought it was great. That same cosiness was there, together with that real sense of having stumbled across something very 'different' to the norm - and certainly different to the run-of-the-mill 'comedy' books you usually find churned out.
I won't say much about the storyline, since that's covered already above, but will suggest that everyone give themselves a real treat and buy a copy of The Ascent of Rum Doodle (the Voyage of the Flying Fish - another Bowman book - is pretty good too, but Rum Doodle is the one to curl up with and have a really nice time).
Can't give this book anything but 5 stars!
Would you like to see more reviews about this item?
Most recent customer reviews
It parodies the old " superior European" attitude.Read more