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Publisher's Summary

Alan Blair, the hero of Wake Up, Sir!, is a young, loony writer with numerous problems of the mental, emotional, sexual, spiritual, and physical variety. He's very good at problems. But luckily for Alan, he has a personal valet named Jeeves, who does his best to sort things out for his troubled master. And Alan does find trouble wherever he goes. He embarks on a perilous and bizarre road journey, his destination being an artists' colony in Saratoga Springs. There Alan encounters a gorgeous femme fatale who is in possession of the most spectacular nose in the history of noses. Such a nose can only lead to a wild disaster for someone like Alan, and Jeeves tries to help him, but...

Well, listen and find out!

©2004 Jonathan Ames; (P)2006 Audible, Inc.

Critic Reviews

  • A 2004 Notable Book of the Year (The New York Times Book Review)

"[An] inventive romp. (The New Yorker)
"Ames' tale zips along, brimming with comedy and wild details, proving him to be a winning storyteller and a consummate, albeit exceedingly eccentric, entertainer." (Publishers Weekly)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

funny

entertaining. poor alan, what a hapless schlub! thank goodness he has the faithful jeeves at his side

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  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Kathleen
  • 16-02-2008

Too Dark for me!

While this book kept me listening, it was too dark for me. This is a story of a man without hope who learns nothing. As a consequence, the reader who invests time in this book must look for other reasons to stay with it.

I suppose if you were looking for someone more miserable than you might be at the time you are reading this review, this book will strike a chord. Otherwise, I would recommend something lighter.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Helena
  • 24-03-2007

Difficult to listen to

I bought this audio some months ago. At the time, the lack of reviews here sent me to amazon.com, where I read some very favorable opinions. The flat tone in which it is narrated, makes it very difficult for one to concentrate on the story and to recognize it's literary value.
I have just finished listening to Bryce Courtanay's "The Potato Factory", narrated by Humphrey Bower: an example of fine narration, that made me aware of how important this feature is in audio books.
I haven't yet been able to listen to much more than 3 hours of "Wake Up, Sir", but I feel it could be very interesting to listen to, if narrated with quality.
Would I have bought this audio book, anyway, if I had known this much? No; but I would have probably bought the book.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Marlina
  • 28-08-2008

Authors Shouldn't Narrate

If you can get past the dull narration by the author(sorry!), the book is actually quite good. A modern, American, take on Wodehouse. Very funny!

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
  • Amazon Customer
  • 12-06-2016

Lost brain cells

The plot was horribly slow. By far the worst book. Have ever attempted to read.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Erika Simon
  • 28-09-2015

Misunderstood

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

YES DEFINITELY!

I loved this audiobook, reading the reviews i feel that just like the main character, this book is misunderstood. The narrative was a bit monotone but it all further emphasized the state of mind of the main character.

What was one of the most memorable moments of Wake Up, Sir!?

Most of the moments are memorable, Alan blair is such a character, so much misfortune, so clueless , so in-denial about his own problems. His helplessness leads him to end up in situations that are just so memorable. So pinpointing a specific memorable moment is quite difficult. However i liked the moment where he discovers he may be "nose fetishist" and his whole theories and thought process behind it.

Which character – as performed by Jonathan Ames – was your favorite?

Well Alan blair has to be the favorite character as this is pretty much his story and narrative.
I thought it was funny, ludicrous and just plain hilarious. Burst out laughing more than once.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

Yes. i finished this book over a weekend. I just couldn't put it down.

Any additional comments?

I would highly recommend

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  • Alicia
  • 17-07-2014

Definitely for a certain type of person...

I absolutely loved this book. That being said, I am that type of person. Jonathan Ames is a quirky, neurotic and brilliant writer but you kind of need an open mind to really appreciate him. The main characters of his fiction books are undeniably based on himself and I thought it was especially fascinating that this book seemed to be a continuation in the adventures of the main character from Ames other novel, The Extra Man. Therefore, if you want more context for what's going on in this novel you should probably read or listen to that one first.

Take all of the negative reviews with a grain of salt. If you are interested in this book but feel wary, look up J.Ames on the interwebs and maybe listen to an interview of him by Marc Maron to see if his personality will mesh with yours.

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
  • Rum Doodler
  • 30-01-2014

The narration kills it

Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

No, it was the first audiobook (in hundreds) that I couldn't bear to finish. The narration was simply that awful.

What was the most interesting aspect of this story? The least interesting?

I love Wodehouse, and I really love the author's Bored to Death TV show, so I thought this book might be a perfect mix. It may well be, but not in audio format.

How did the narrator detract from the book?

The narration was monotone, but I've listened to other monotone narrations (Kramer's narration of the Butcher Boy series, for example) that were excellent. No, it's just that the narration was terrible. With professional narration, it might be an excellent audiobook.

If this book were a movie would you go see it?

I won't know until and if I read the book.

Any additional comments?

Apologies to Jonathan Ames for picking on his narration. His TV series Bored to Death is fantastic, and I know the man has a great deal of talent. But narration is definitely not one of them. I only wish I could have found out if writing a book is.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
  • "unknown"
  • 09-09-2011

really enjoyable

I listened to all of his audiobooks. While this one is not my favorite, I really enjoyed it. Especially the way he reads the book by himself. It is true that he might vocally "downgrade" his story with a not as enthusiastic style as other narrators might have. But it absolutely fits the story. His reading accompanies the absurdity of it in a way that it doesn't get silly but stays funny.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Sherray
  • 06-01-2009

Very funny...

I liked the book, but didn't like the narrator's voice.His slow,nasal tone could put people to sleep.

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Yvo
  • 20-01-2007

Really depressing

The worst book I listened to over the past three years. Guaranteed to worsen your mental condition especially if you are already feeling depressed. If you enjoy craving over the futility of life over a set of futile pages, this is something for you. "Read by the author" did not help. There should be a health warning on the package of this one.Make sure to hear a sample before you buy. The authors' voice, style and tone is totally in line with the content.

2 of 4 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Darren Hughes
  • 28-05-2016

I could listen to Jonathan Ames read anything

Once again Jonathan Ames has managed to make my commute to work totally bearable.

The story is an interest one but it's the amazing characters and their interplay that make this a great book. From the main character who I think most of us can relate with, to his valet Jeeves who is very much the voice of reason.

Although I enjoyed this story, I think I would purchase an audio book of Jonathan Ames reading the ingredients for lice spray. He has a lovely calming voice and with little tweaks of his voice here and there he creates completely believable characters.

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  • Mr P Boardman
  • 03-09-2015

bizarre but entertaining

A nice twist on the old character's. Nothing like woodhouse, but probably better to innovate than imitate.

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    2 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
  • Dawn
  • 03-09-2015

Hard work

Any additional comments?

Slightly odd, save your credit! Fortunately for me I downloaded this as a freebie, otherwise I would probably have had to return it. I persevered but just really didn't get it. It links in with "The Extra man," and is equally as odd. Again there are several different story lines which are only just semi entertaining. This book also made me feel uncomfortable in places and is not one to read if you are feeling slightly low. What was the purpose of this book? Maybe its just me, but it was hard work, I wouldn't waste a credit on it. As a freebie, well the choice is yours.

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    1 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
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  • louise
  • 19-08-2015

reader is sending me to sleep

the reader is so bad I cant concentrate on the story he might as well be reading a shopping list

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
  • Elspeth Spokes
  • 09-08-2015

board

fell asleep wasn't enough to keep me interested more of a man's book would try this author again though

0 of 1 people found this review helpful