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Diary of a Pilgrimage

Jerome K. Jerome

Book Overview: 

A possibly fictionalized account by the comic novelist Jerome K. Jerome of a trip to Germany that he undertook with a friend in order to see the famous Passion Play at Oberammergau. The journey takes in London, Dover, Ostend, Cologne, Munich, Oberau, Oberammergau and then back to London via Heidelberg. As one might expect from the author of 'Three Men in a Boat', much goes wrong along the way, including seasickness, strange food, stranger beds, misleading guidebooks, bewildering train timetables, and numerous cultural and linguistic misunderstandings.

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .among the luggage there, sat down and tried to look innocent and easy.

B. said that the best thing we could do, when the other people came, would be to pretend to be dead asleep, and too stupid to understand anything.

I replied that as far as I was concerned, I thought I could convey the desired impression without stooping to deceit at all, and prepared to make myself comfortable.

A few seconds later another man got into the carriage.  He also made room for himself among the luggage and sat down.

“I am afraid that seat’s taken, sir,” said B. when he had recovered his surprise at the man’s coolness.  “In fact, all the seats in this carriage are taken.”

“I can’t help that,” replied the ruffian, cynically.  “I’ve got to get to Cologne some time to-day, and there seems no other way of doing it that I can see.”

“Yes, but so has the gentlema. . . Read More

Community Reviews

I thoroughly enjoyed this. It's laugh-out-loud funny in many spots.

Apparently Jerome had intended to write "The Story of the Thames", its scenery and history, with some "humorous relief", but the humor took over the book. (He had just returned from his honeymoon and "had the feeling that all the...more

If you are feeling nostalgic for the good old days of say, Charlie Chaplin - only British and not American, like pre-Titanic and pre-WWI, when if one were lucky enough to be well off enough not to work and not forced to grow up before the age of say, twenty-five, then this book may fit the bill....more

I read Three Men in a Boat, to Say Nothing of the Dog because I was going to read Connie Willis's To Say Nothing of the Dog and wanted to know what the relation was. Three Men … is the story of three friends and a dog on a boat trip up the Thames from Kingston to Oxford, To Say Nothing … incorpor...more

What can I say about this book. It is the funniest, best written comedy book ever to have been written. Sadly it makes all comedic writers, myself included, sound forced, clumsy and gauché.

Happily there has never ever been a film adaption that was anywhere approaching the quality of the writing a...more

Still laugh-out-loud funny after all these years. The central joke is the way our attempts to create idyllic situations seem doomed to fail. A group of us had great fun discussing this book at the first Idler Book Club. Jerome was the editor of The Idler magazine during the Edwardian era and also...more

Three Men in a Boat regularly had me looking away from the book, laying back in bed, and laughing uncontrollably. It's full of moments shared between the author and reader, where both are in on a joke in which the characters are blissfully unaware they are playing a part.

At times Jerome produces...more

There is nothing useful this book. Nothing edifying, nothing instructive, or clarifying in this novel.

I read Three Men in a Boat last month and didn't learn anything at all! And this month I pick up Three Men on the Bummel and expected *AT LEAST* a concise travelogue with pretty pictures describi...more

Three young men are ruminating together on their various imagined illnesses and how much they need a holiday. Together with the dog, Montmorency, they hire a boat and travel up the Thames from London to Oxford and hilarity, as they say, ensues.

I found this to be a delightful book, very easy to re...more

I am amazed by how fresh and vibrant these works still read. Three Men in a Boat is essentially some of the cast of The Office, trying to have fun on a vacation on the river. Three Men on the Bummel consists of the same trio trying to find rest and relaxation away from their families on a bike tr...more

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