Scoop by Evelyn Waugh

I quite like the cover which I’ve shown above but my copy is the original old Penguin one,which is very battered now as it belonged to my grandad. The book was first published in 1933.

I first read Scoop when I was about 18, many moons ago and I actually found myself laughing out loud at it. Believe me when I say that – as a dour Scot – that doesn’t happen to me often.

This book is a famous satire on journalism and although it was published so long ago, I doubt if much has changed in that industry – apart from things being sleazier now.

John Boot a young novelist asks the influential Mrs. Stitch to get him a job in journalism abroad so that he can avoid a girlfriend who is becoming too serious for his liking. She gets Lord Copper, owner of The Daily Beast to give him work as a war correspondent.

Unfortunately there is a man already on the payroll by the name of William Boot who writes a weekly column on the countryside and wildlife and he ends up being sent to East Africa as a war correspondent by mistake.

The ideas in this book are similar to the hilarious T.V. programme Drop the Dead Donkey, with ‘news’ being made up and manipulated. Well worth a read.

It’s hard to believe that Scoop was written by the same man who wrote Brideshead Revisited. I loved that book and the T.V. series too, but they are so different from each other.

By all accounts Evelyn Waugh was a pretty ghastly person though.

I reread this book as part of the Flashback Challenge. I did enjoy it but I didn’t laugh as much this time. Either because I already knew what was coming or maybe I’ve just become more of a sobersides in my old age.

2 thoughts on “Scoop by Evelyn Waugh

  1. I read Scoop because it was on the Modern Library’s Top 100 list, and I loved it. It is really, very funny.

    I’m glad I found your blog. I’ll come back and visit more. I also signed up to subscribe.

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