Pocket has been Lear's cherished fool for years. So naturally Pocket is at his brainless, elderly liege's side when Lear demands that his kids swear to him their undying love and devotion. Of course Goneril and Regan are only too happy to brownnose Dad. But Cordelia believes that her father's request is kind of...well...stupid, and her blunt honesty ends up costing her her rightful share of the kingdom and earns her a banishment to boot.
Well now the bangers and mash have really hit the fan. And the only person who can possibly make things right . . . is Pocket. Now he's going to have do some very fancy maneuvering: cast some spells, start a war or two - the usual stuff - to get Cordelia back into Daddy Lear's good graces, to derail the fiendish power plays of Cordelia's twisted sisters, and to shag every lusciously shaggable wench who's amenable to shagging along the way.
Pocket may be a fool...but he's definitely not an idiot.
©2009 Christopher Moore; (P)2009 HarperCollins Publishers
I listen to audiobooks hours every day, and this is one of my absolute favorites. The reading/performance by Euan Morton is absolutely phenomenal. He was very good as Paul in the Dune books, I think it was 2 books, but on those I think he was limited to just the one character. He is superb with this book! We need more Morton!
I'm dyslexic and I never read much until I discovered audiobooks. I love a great character and will follow them through any crazy fiction.
This book was so funny I was laughing in public with my earphones in. People looked at me like I was nuts. It's not sophisticated humor, mostly jokes about bonking. I feel sorry for anyone who doesn't laugh at this bawdy farce, because clearly he or she is wound too tightly. If you can get your ear around British slang, it's well worth the listen. Very Funny indeed.
People say I resemble my dog (and vice-versa). He can hear sounds I can't hear, but I'm the one who listens to audiobooks.
After listening to The Serpent of Venice, Chris Moore's latest, I decided to go back and listen to Fool first chance I got, having read it several years ago in print. Sure enough, it turned up in Audible's recent BOGO sale of listener favorites, as it is, as advertised, a listener favorite.
Fool was Moore's first try at turning a Shakespearean tragedy into a comedy, taking the story of King Lear and telling it from the point of view of Lear's fool (jester), Pocket. With the witches from Macbeth thrown in for good measure, and of course there's always a ghost, Moore sends up Lear through the use of language -- sarcasm, pun, straight out joke, mixing Shakespearean English with modern English slang to great comic effect.
Whether you're a Shakespeare fan, or a Shakespeare contratrian like me, or never even heard of the bloody bard, Fool will tickle your funny bone with Pocket's unfailing ability to cleverly turn of phrase. Euan Morton, who has narrated Moore's last two novels, including Serpent of Venice, does his best work here, not going overboard with some characters as he does in the recent Pocket sequel.
(For anyone who doesn't get the title of my review: "More fool you" is a phrase from Taming of the Shrew, meaning you're more of a fool than I thought. "More Fool Me" is a variation on that phrase that was used as the title of a Genesis song back in the 70s, sung by Phil Collins during the time when Peter Gabriel was still the lead singer. I added a second O to pun the author's name, in addition to the double entendre -- if I may use a phrase from effing French -- of the fool me part.)
I REALLY loved this book! And, the audio-version made it even better. The material is hilarious - as long as you don't have a thin skin for TOTALLY non-PC language, for ribald humor, and for...well, WANKING, SNOGGING, and SHAGGING! The amount of research that went into making this "loose retelling" of the King Lear story must have been phenomenal! And it shows - by virtue of how masterfully and seamlessly the author interwove the "King Lear" play with bust-a-gut funny embellishments. There are a multitude of Shakespearean quotes (from various other works of the Bard) tossed into (and tossed off!) this totally irreverent book! I was laughing at a steady pace the entire way through the book! And, the narrator of the audio-version (Eaun Morton) did and EXCELLENT job of bringing the voices to life (especially the 3 Witches!). This is, IMHO, one of Christopher Moore's finest books! It pays irreverent homage to Shakespeare, while telling a nasty little story of deceit, revenge, treachery...and "heinous f**kery"! Loved every minute of it!
Fool is classic Moore - bawdy, outrageous and always left of center. Be warned - if "heinous f**kery" offends you, this is not the book (or author) for you. But if you are a Moore-ophile, then his newest book is just what the doctor ordered. Narrator Morton is an excellent choice for the voice of Pocket, and the plot? It almost doesn't matter... just sit back, laugh and enjoy!
This was my first Christopher Moore book--I'd give the narrator 5 stars for how hysterically he voices the characters (and tears into Moore's strings of wild invective). You don't do such a book for its plot or its characters---they serve the telling of the story, and it is superbly done.
This version of Lear's plight is recounted by Pocket, the court Fool; here are the king, daughters, witches, bastards, storms and betrayals-but tweaked by Moore's fevered mind. There's also Drool, the beef-brained, sweetly innocent sidekick, and a sympathetic Ghost. Moore's language is so artfully deployed, it's a joy just to listen to the sentences. (The curses alone set a new standard.) There's lots of "shagging" and "rogering", so not for prim sensibilities. (Anachronisms occur, all to humor's end.)
I've just become a listener, and purchased this based on the home page recommendation.
I could not have made a better choice.
This is an adult book (due to language).
I will be listening to all of Christorper Moore's book and be giving serious consideration to every thing Euan Morton reads.
Favorite Moore book so far!
So funny. I am sure I disrupted my coworkers repeatedly with burst of laughter.
Well read. Good performance.
It took about a week to listen, but I am busy, busy.
No vampires. No zombies. No self-help. Find me on BookLikes. Audible Member since 2002!
What a naughty, bawdy romp! I loved it. I read it just three weeks before I went to see King Lear on stage at Trinity Rep and it was the perfect appetizer.
The Audible edition also includes an interview with the author and that just added to the pleasure of the read. Don't skip the interview.
They weren't kidding when they described it as Shakespeare meets Monty Python. I think that was exactly what Mr. Moore was going for and he definitely nailed it. Crude, to be sure, but good fun and even, dare I say, sweet at times! Euan Morton did a fantastic job! I listened to it twice in a row and then went back over my favorite parts
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