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FUNNY YOU SHOULD ASK by Marvin Terban

FUNNY YOU SHOULD ASK

How to Make Up Jokes and Riddles with Wordplay

by Marvin Terban, illustrated by John O’Brien

Age Range: 8 - 12

Pub Date: Oct. 19th, 1992
ISBN: 0-395-60556-3
Publisher: Clarion

 The author of 11 lively books that bring a delightfully light touch to such subjects as idioms, homographs, and wordplay provides a joke book-cum-manual subtitled How to Make Up Jokes and Riddles with Wordplay. In four chapters, Terban demonstrates the process with homonyms, near-homonyms (a ``pirate ship'' is a ``thug boat''), homographs, and idioms. The generously abundant jokes not only serve as examples, but--by offering several comic uses for a single sound that lends itself to punning (foul/fowl), pointing out how jokes can be devised by beginning with a punch line--Terban also gets readers thinking about the mechanics of language and the meanings of words in general as well as about a variety of ways to play with sound and sense. Even for those who find the exercises more difficult than the author makes them sound, the jokes themselves are invitingly funny; Terban concludes by mentioning their sources, old and new. O'Brien's comical line drawings extend the fun, and occasionally the meaning. Brief bibliography. (Nonfiction. 8-12)