Monday, 1 July 2013

Bleak Expectations by Mark Evans

As I’m sure most of you will gather this is a parody version of Great Expectations. It is the hilariously narrated account of the life of Pip Bin whose father’s disappearance and mental decline of his mother sets in motion a crazy and often grim chain of events. 

The unfortunate Pip is sent to the nastiest, most fatal boarding school for boys, St Bastards, by his evil guardian Mr Gently Benevolent, who is plotting to marry Pip’s mother and get his hands on the family money. 

Poor Pip later suffers a number of misfortunes including a stint in the workhouse, prison, poverty and the deaths of friends and foe. Will Pip overcome his problems and save the day? This is certainly worth the read to find out. 

Bleak Expectations is truly laugh out loud funny. It’s a crazy story with barmy characters, amusingly eloquent prose and frequent alliteration. I really liked the main characters; Pip Bin is a noble hero with a kind heart but poor judgement and scatterbrain acquaintances that often land him in trouble. 

There is a radio adaptation of Bleak Expectations which I have heard is just as funny. But be warned, do not read/listen in public, lest you attract stares and disapproving looks and be carted off to an asylum a la Mother Bin. I found this out on the bus, minus the asylum part! This has to be one of the funniest books I’ve read this year, if ever. 

If clever comedy and shameless parody are your thing, then read this book now or forever be a wally-chops!

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