Tag Archives: puns

Punny Side Up: Clever Titles, Fun Summer Reads

The only thing better than a good pun is a bad pun, the kind that leaves you doubled over, groaning. When you spot a pun in a book title, it usually means you’re in for a good time, reading-wise. And since it’s summer, why not put aside the ponderous reads for a while and take a chance on something silly? Here are a few titles to try on for size.

apocalypsecowApocalypse Cow, Michael Logan. Everybody takes it on the chin in this snicker-worthy, satirical horror tale about a government experiment gone horribly wrong. The cows of Scotland have turned zombie, and the virus responsible leaps quickly to other animal species. Look out humanity: now you’re the snack! As the country descends into chaos, three extremely unlikely heroes–a teenage math geek, a slaughterhouse worker, and an inept journalist–do their best to save the day. Which pretty much means humanity is doomed, but you’ll have a lot of fun watching the train wreck. Terry Pratchett enjoyed this book enough to give it a prize in 2011, so now that it’s available in the U.S., you should check it out, too; I expect you will find it very moo-ving.

Sleeping With the Entity, Cat Devon. Daniella just wants to open a cupcake shop; is that so wrong? Nick, the head of the local entitybusiness association, doesn’t want Daniella or her cupcakes anywhere near his neighborhood, which actually serves as headquarters for Nick’s vampire clan. Somehow immune to Nick’s mind control techniques, Daniella barrels on ahead with her business plan anyway, which leads to peril for her, exasperation for Nick, and plenty of sexual tension smoldering between them both. Devon’s paranormal romance is as fluffy and luscious as buttercream frosting, and once you’ve savored it, continuing on to The Entity Within will be a piece of cake.

hexHex and the Single Girl, Valerie Frankel. Unlike Devon’s novel, which is slightly silly and mostly steamy, Frankel’s tale of a matchmaking witch is a full-out wacky romp. Emma has used her psychic gifts to hook up countless happy couples, but despairs of ever finding a love of her own. Enter William, a wealthy software developer, who finds Emma utterly fascinating. Too bad Emma’s trying to fix William up with one of her clients…especially since she finds him pretty interesting, too. Replete with bad puns and composed of a cast of colorful New Yorkers (magical and otherwise), this is a screwball romantic comedy that will scramble your brain in egg-actly the way a summer read should.

Too Many Crooks Spoil the Broth, Tamar Myers. Tart-tongued Magdalena Yoder and her sister Susannah converted their family farm into a crooksbed and breakfast after their parents died. Now the Mennonite siblings, with the help of some of their Amish friends and neighbors, run the PennDutch Inn, a popular stop for folks touring Pennsylvania Dutch territory. The only thing is, there’s a corpse on the bed, and it’s ruining Magdalena’s quilt, and this simply will not do. Add in a shady politician on vacation, a pack of vegetarians who are driving Magdalena’s cook crazy, and enough food descriptions to give George R.R. Martin a run for his money, and you have a nice cozy-folksy mystery–part of a series!–that also contains recipes (the broiled bananas dessert looks particularly ap-peel-ing).

If you haven’t thrown up your hands in despair and moved on to looking at cute cat photos, you are clearly the target audience for more puntastic goodness. Terry Pratchett, Piers Anthony, Diane Mott Davidson, and Donna Andrews are just a few authors who dabble in groan-worthy titles; you’ll find these and other suggestions via this Goodreads list. My personal favorite title at the moment is Giles Smith’s  Midnight in the Garden of Evel Knievel, which I plan to acquire and read despite having less than zero interest in sports (anybody that punny deserves my consideration).

Your turn: does a punny book title send you to the checkout counter, or running for the hills? Have any fun examples you’d care to share?

Leigh Anne

also currently giggling over Polar Bolero


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Hoop — There It Is!

One of my Christmas gifts this year was, much to my surprise, a hoop.

Not a hula hoop, mind you. Er, well, sort of a hula hoop. The shape is the same, but the size and usage are a little different, and the nomenclature has changed. If, like me, you’ve been  completely ignorant of the current hooping renaissance, you can click on over to hooping.org for clarification, or check out the main page for the documentary The Hooping Life, which contains an extensive list of links to other sites about hoops, hooping, and hoopers. You can even, if you’re so inclined, learn to make your own hoop.

Still perplexed?  Check out this hooping routine, one of the many available on YouTube; note the cat’s enthusiasm.

As you can imagine, I am tickled pink:  I have a hoop!  Never mind that I’m a) not a good dancer, and b) clumsier than Tonks on a good day.  It’s a new year, and by golly, I am going to shatter that mousy librarian stereotype by ordering a few instructional DVDs, and, perhaps, a book.  My plan is to learn a few hoop moves, then write another post later in the year reporting back on my progress…or lack thereof. 

Look out, Cirque du Soleil–here I come!  Now only one question remains:  does this new adventure make your heroine a hipster hooper?  Hmmm.

Any other hoopers in the house?

Leigh Anne


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Let’s (Not) Have Sax

The world of music is full of bad puns (e.g., “going for baroque!” “can you Handel it?” etc.).

Saxophonists seem to be the worst offenders.  Specifically, they can’t resist substituting sax and sex. If you want to indulge them…

  • You can read Paquito D’Rivera’s autobiography “My Sax Life” (also, notice its original title in Spanish, “Mi Vida Saxual”).
  • Or listen to Kim Waters’ “Sax Appeal” or “Sweet and Saxy.”
  • The Fairer Sax, a female saxophone quartet, might tickle your fancy.
  • Your plans for the evening perhaps involve dimming the lights and spinning an LP titled “The Night was Made For… Sax” by Gene Casciola (a graduate of Pittsburgh’s Duquesne University).
  • Reminisce about our libidinous former president with the Capitol Steps’ “The Joy of Sax.”
  • Crank up your “Sax Drive,” not with some pills purchased from an ad in the back of a magazine, but with some saxophone concertos.
  • You can have “Sax on the Beach” with John Tesh but I understand if you don’t want to.
  • And if you decide to have “Sax by the Fire” with John Tesh, don’t get burned!
  • Finally, you can “Have Yourself a Saxy Little Christmas” if you want to make Santa and Jesus cringe.

If you can add to the list, please let us know!  If you’re a saxophonist, please take a cold shower before you continue this trend.

– Tim


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