Book Review: The Diary of a Nobody by George Grossmith


The Diary of a Nobody by George Grossmith

Weedon Grossmith’s 1892 book presents the details of English suburban life through the anxious and accident-prone character of Charles Porter. Porter’s diary chronicles his daily routine, which includes small parties, minor embarrassments, home improvements, and his relationship with a troublesome son. The small minded but essentially decent suburban world he inhabits is both hilarious and painfully familiar. This edition features Weedon Grossmith’s illustrations and an introduction which discusses the story’s social context.

An amusing read – possibly funnier at the time it was published – this is the diary of Charles Pooter telling stories of himself, his friends and family.

He’s a middle class banker with little ambition, who is constantly being insulted and taken advantage of by the servants and tradesmen, and does not understand his son. He attempts to show his sense of humour frequently fail as many people dont find the same things funny. The man is un-self-aware and doesnt understand other people. Other people are acting normally, but he misinterprets what they are doing and ends up insulting them, at which point they insult him and he is the one that ends up aggrieved. He is, essentially, the man you always try to avoid at office social events, because you’ll get frustrated and bored by him

Short little read, amusing enough, not entirely sure I understood the ending (but then it was early in the morning).



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