Three Men in a Boat --To Say Nothing Of The Dog
By Jerome K. Jerome

A very good book, and very funny. It has some very boring bits, like the preface, the introduction, the author's advertisement, and the author's preface to the first edition. These will vary depending on the edition you read, but I advise skipping all except for the author's advertisement.

Once you get to the actual story, feel free to skip past the intermittent boring parts, primarily consisting of lengthy descriptions of the River. Unless you personally know the river Thames, or are interested in blurry bits of England's history, you may have to skim, or risk fatal doses of boredom. Mr. Jerome originally intended this book to be a travel guide of sorts, but thankfully Mr. Jerome had so much fun writing it that it ended as something closer to a comedy.

The majority of the book is great. It follows the adventures of three Victorian Englishmen, to say nothing of their dog, as they boat down the Thames. The adventurers get attacked by swans, capsize, discover the downsides to camping out, and the upside to dreamy days on the river. It is one of the more readable, and funny, books of the era. It was written in 1889, and gets bonus points just for being a realistic, but readable, description of life at that time.

Apparently there was a sequel, Three Men on the Bummel, about a the same three men on a bicycling trip, but I have not yet hunted it down. (In case you were wondering, a bummel is a destinationless trip, not a bicycle).

I would suggest reading the first chapter. If you don't find the tale of the author's hypochondria hilarious, just give up. On the other hand, if you do enjoy such bits of silliness, this is a great book.

To Say Nothing Of The Dog or How we Found The Bishop's Bird Stump At Last is an even better book by Connie Willis. But the basic story doesn't have a lot to do with Jerome K. Jerome's book. She just liked the sound of it. I can hardly wait until someone writes How we Found The Bishop's Bird Stump At Last -- (insert subtitle here). It'll be a doozy.