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Global Village Idiot Paperback – 1 Oct 2002

3.7 out of 5 stars 9 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Black Swan; New Ed edition (1 Oct. 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0552999644
  • ISBN-13: 978-0552999649
  • Product Dimensions: 12.8 x 2.5 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 182,126 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Amazon Review

The title of John O'Farrell's latest book, Global Village Idiot, refers not to the author, who proves far from an idiot, but to President George W Bush, whose trip to Europe in June 2001 closes this compendium of absurdly funny, journalistic pummellings. Sadly, subsequent events may now result in only edgy laughter at the witticism. In an age of ubiquitous but low-cal humour, John O'Farrell is that old-fashioned diamond, a gags man unable to write a dull line. In this, he plies a trade of satire and whimsy that combines the best of British working-men's clubs with the quick-fire, dime-a-joke New York patter that relies on fresh rather than canned humour.

Collecting 1000-word comment pieces, mainly from The Guardian and The Independent, Global Village Idiot reveals an irreverently relevant look at British and world news at the turn of the century. O'Farrell, the author of Things Can Only Get Better, a memoir of 18 grim years as a Labour Party activist ruined by the 1997 General Election triumph, and the comic novel, The Best a Man Can Get, distinguishes his soapbox pennyworths by an affirming sense of belief, and moral consequence. He may poke fun at Bush, New Labour, boarding-school parents, hopping across the wasteland of television "choice", Euro-sceptics, SAS novelists and paternity leave; he even piles further comic indignities onto Neil Hamilton and Mohammed al Fayed, despite their own high standards on that score. Yet behind the wisecracks, and consistently high chortle factor, lies more serious intent. To laugh is to be alive to the disgraces, anomalies, hypocrisies, skulduggery and double standards of modern life that impel socio-political satirists such as O'Farrell to write with such consistent pinging accuracy. Perhaps the biggest compliment is to say that if today's news is tomorrow's fish-and-chip paper, then somehow O'Farrell makes delightful macramé from it. And who knows, an article a day may help keep the spin-doctors at bay. --David Vincent --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

Review

"Very funny" (The Times)

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Customer Reviews

3.7 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
I bought this book from the airport on the way off for a weeks holiday. (I had already read 'The Best A Man Can Get' & didn't stop laughing.) I bought 'Things Can Only Get Better' to take with me but couldn't resist reading 'Global Village Idiot' first. It too made me laugh out loud many, many times - which must have looked odd when I was sitting on my own in the airport departure lounge & on my sunbed next to the pool. My husband couldn't wait for me to finish it & I already have a couple of people who will want to read it after me. Not only is it a VERY funny book, but is also a fascinating reminder of some of the events that have occurred during the last couple of years (many of which I had forgotten). It is a kind of historical diary - looking at the events through the 'humourous eyes' of O'Farrell. I hope that John is writing some more books as I don't want to have to wait too long to read something that makes me laugh till I cry. Excellent!
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Format: Paperback
I really enjoyed this selection of articles which were written before the Iraq war. Having read it recently it was quite uncanny some of the comments and warnings made by John O'Farrell. Pity Tony Blair did not heed them or perhaps he never read them.
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By A Customer on 9 Jan. 2002
Format: Paperback
This book was a real let down. I thought Things Can Only get Better and The Best a Man Can Get were both excellent, and had been eagerly looking forward to reading this collection. Part of the attraction of Things Can Only Get Better was that, despite the staunchness of John O'Farrell's own political views, it was a book those of other (and as in my own case no particular) political alliegances, could enjoy. This was for two reasons - firstly because he nailed his colours firmly to the mast as a political activist, rather than as an absolute arbiter of right and wrong. More importantly, there was a touch of humility, and you were left with the feeling that over time his mind had broadened into accepting that perhaps there were other valid views. This proves comprehensively not to be the case in this offering. Over the course of the articles, O'Farrell rants against anyone who does not share his particular view, whether it be on domestic politics, world affairs, religion, the countryside, or most of all anyone who wants to take a pop at anything the current Labour Government is doing. Rather than simply using his undoubted wit to present his view, he seems too often to feel the need to dismiss anyone who does not share it as worthy of nothing but his contempt... What a pity from an author whith such obvious talent.
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Format: Paperback
SINCE STUMBLING ON THIS AUTHOR I'VE READ ALL i CAN GET HOLD OF. I HAVE A CYNICAL AND PERVERTED VIEW OF POLITICIANS. WISH I COULD IN THE FIRST INSTANCE VIEW LIFE THROUGH THIS AUTHOR'S EYES
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Format: Paperback
Regardless of your own politics, it is a very dry, witty and well worth read
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