Read Scoop by Evelyn Waugh Online


Lord Copper, newspaper magnate and proprietor of the "Daily Beast", has always prided himself on his intuitive flair for spotting ace reporters. That is not to say he has not made the odd blunder, however, and may in a moment of weakness make another. Acting on a dinner-party tip from Mrs Algernon Smith, he feels convinced that he has hit on just the chap to cover a promisLord Copper, newspaper magnate and proprietor of the "Daily Beast", has always prided himself on his intuitive flair for spotting ace reporters. That is not to say he has not made the odd blunder, however, and may in a moment of weakness make another. Acting on a dinner-party tip from Mrs Algernon Smith, he feels convinced that he has hit on just the chap to cover a promising little war in the African Republic of Ishmaelia. One of Waugh's most exuberant comedies, "Scoop" is a brilliantly irreverent satire of "Fleet Street" and its hectic pursuit of hot news....

Title : Scoop
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780140004557
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 224 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Scoop Reviews

  • Petra X
    2020-01-28 22:06

    Evelyn Waugh was a snob, a racist, an anti-semite and a fascist sympathiser whose attitude was, in the words of his biographer David Wykes, "[Waugh's racism was] "an illogical extension of his views on the naturalness and rightness of hierarchy as the (main) principle of social organisation". He was also jealous, personally nasty and malicious, had been a bully at school, and as James Lees-Milne said, "the nastiest-tempered man in England". Waugh was, however, absolutely devoted to his adopted religion, Catholicism, and generally friendly, welcoming and generous to other Catholics. Nancy Mitford asked him how he reconciled his often objectionable conduct and attitude with being a Christian, said he replied that "were he not a Christian he would be even more horrible".All of this is on display in this absolutely hilarious farce of a book, and right at the beginning the tone is set, "That’s Mrs. Cohen,” said Effie. “You see how it is. They’re Yids.”“Oh dear,” said William, “I was told to come here by the Passport Office.”“Sure it isn’t the nigger downstairs you want?”Scoop is a satire on journalism and the newspaper industry in general based on his own experiences or rather that of a fellow war correspondent for the Daily Mail covering the Abyssinian-Italian war. Although the characters are so utterly defined by the mythical racial characteristics assigned to them by an unkind world, it is still easy to laugh. The snobbery which the non-ethnic characters displayed was equally harsh and that is perhaps the key as to why such an ostensibly nasty book by such an unpleasant man is so funny, he must have seen himself in all of this, "He was gifted with the sly, sharp instinct for self-preservation that passes for wisdom among the rich," and so it's a bit of a send-up, and that's something we can all appreciate. The writing is wonderful, just as it was in his opus magnum, Brideshead Revisited, the humour extravagant, the denoument ridiculous. All in all, recommended to everyone who likes period pieces that aren't quite. nor ever will be, classics.

  • Paul
    2020-02-18 01:07

    2.5 starsI’ve read little Waugh apart from Brideshead Revisited, which I loved; Waugh is writing there about the decline of the upper classes and writing about people he knew. This is a comic novel about Journalism and the newspaper industry and is a very effective satire. Lord Copper, the tyrannical and megalomaniac newspaper boss was said to be based on Lord Northcliffe, but was probably also part Beaverbrook and Hearst. The story is based on Waugh’s experiences working for the Daily Mail as a foreign correspondent covering Mussolini’s invasion of Abyssinia in 1935. Ethiopia is changed to the imaginary state of Ishmaelia. Lord Copper owner of the Daily Beast has learnt that something is going on in Ishmaelia. As his best correspondent has recently transferred to the Daily Brute, he is in need of a new one. A certain Mr John Boot, a writer, is recommended. As it happens William Boot writes an obscure countryside column for the paper. He is mistakenly called to London and given the job. Boot is sent to Ishmaelia with large amounts of useless luggage, where he meets lots of other journalists, including Americans and French. They look for communists and fascists and for the promised civil war. Of course little is going on so the journalists make it up. William has adventures, falls briefly in love. William also has his moment when something actually does happen. There is a good cast of supporting characters; many of whom are based on people Waugh knew. The character of William Boot is said to be loosely based on Bill Deedes who had been with Waugh covering the situation in Abyssinia. Deedes was 22 at the time and his newspaper had sent him out with a quarter of a ton of baggage. Deedes spent the next 65 years denying this!This is a funny and well written novel and was in the Observer list of the one hundred greatest novels of all time. The satire of the newspaper industry still has relevance today and is very pertinent. However there are problems for me with the whole. This was written in 1938 and one would expect with a robust writer like Waugh some issues with language. That is an understatement; Waugh is anti-Semitic and racist and his approach to other races is execrable. He was a clear believer in hierarchy and very misanthropic. Cyril Connolly referred to him as a permanent adolescent. Christopher Hitchens has argued that Waugh’s many faults, dislikes and contempt for other human beings makes his cruelty funny as a novelist and writer. I remain unconvinced and Orwell (who was an exact contemporary) made a more thoughtful comment in some notes for an unwritten essay on Waugh; Waugh was “almost as good a novelist as it is possible to be . . . while holding untenable opinions”Waugh’s satire of tabloid journalism and its complacent corruption is still prescient, but his attitudes and opinions are awful

  • Karl Steel
    2020-02-10 03:06

    Second time reading.File this under guilty pleasures. I'm, well outraged isn't the right word, made weary by the dreariness of the other reviews of this book: plot summaries, gestures towards its transhistorical narratives (or towards its capturing that peculiar moment before the Nazis invaded Poland), and hamfisted comparisons to P. G. Wodehouse (different sort of writer entirely, although, hilariously, Wodehouse does get a shoutout as the plot winds down). And then, well, there's the fact that the book is terribly racist. It's not racist in a Mein Kampf or Turner Diaries kind of way; there's no particular program Waugh wants to push; but the novel nevertheless goes hand-in-thoughtless-hand with the postwar atrocities committed by Britain in Kenya. Is this attitude inevitable? Simply a record of its time?Of course not. Don't be foolish.That said, it's delightful. I'm of course reminded of A. J. Liebling's war journalism. The plot should be a model for plots everywhere. The odd mixture of affection and contempt is characteristic of the best humor writing (see, for example, Diary of a Nobody or Cold Comfort Farm). I'm going a bit too far here: it's clear that Waugh finds the expropriation of Africa's natural resources by European colonial powers distasteful. And that's something.I'd suggest, however, starting with The Loved One.

  • BrokenTune
    2020-01-28 21:16

    Review was first posted on BookLikes: nearly two weeks now, the bent and creased copy of Scoop sitting on my desk has been staring at me. Patiently. Waiting whether I was going to write a review or not. On finishing the book I had exactly two feelings about it: 1. As far as satire of the press goes, Waugh created the most delicious and entertaining spoof I could have imagined. However,2. This book contained so many openly racist and chauvinist remarks that even Fleming's Live and Let Die (which I had finished just before Scoop) looks like an enlightened and unbiased work promoting intercultural understanding. For the best part of the last two weeks, I have looked at my old copy of Scoop and wondered whether to chuck it onto the charity shop pile or straight into the bin. It's not a book I would recommend unreservedly. Even looking at Waugh as a representative of a time when sentiments of racial or cultural stereotyping were common and widely accepted, I wonder whether there was a need for it in Scoop because this was not a part of the book that was satirical. Or, if it was, this did not come across well.So, while I am glad that I have read Scoop, I expected more. Much more.

  • Daniel
    2020-01-31 23:08

    This book made me laugh out loud, something that books rarely do. Then again, I don't read comical fiction. Still, I suspect that, were I to look into the genre, Waugh would stand out in the crowd.This is the third book that I've read from Waugh's work, and of the three it is the clear favorite. Along with his usual talent for razzing British societal mannerisms, Waugh adds his satirical take on foreign policy in a small, developing country that is, ostensibly, under threat of civil war. What starts as a jab against hyperbolic journalism and a total lack of understanding amongst policy makers turns into an absurd spectacle that even includes a measure of swashbuckling.It feels like Waugh had fun writing this tale, and his powers of description are so apt that the feeling is catching. Here, for example, Waugh sketches the front yard of a woman who rents out rooms on her property:"The Pension Dressler stood in a side street and had, at first glance, the air rather of a farm than of a hotel. Frau Dressler's pig, tethered by one hind trotter to the jamb of the front door, roamed the yard and disputed the kitchen scraps with the poultry. He was a prodigious beast. Frau Dressler's guests prodded him appreciatively on their way to the dining-room, speculating on how soon he would be ripe for killing. The milch-goat was allowed a narrower radius; those who kept strictly to the causeway were safe, but she never reconciled herself to this limitation and, day in, day out, essayed a series of meteoric onslaughts on the passers-by, ending, at the end of her rope, with a jerk which would have been death to an animal of any other species. One day the rope would break; she knew it and so did Frau Dressler's guests." (156)Phrases such as "meteoric onslaught" are an excellent example of the skillful hand that Waugh brings to language.Only one aspect of this book did not work, whatsoever, and that is the rampant racism that Waugh shows for black people. It is a sad and foolish shortcoming, much like the racism that Robert Howard succumbed to in his adventure stories. It is possible that Waugh is going for more humor when he tosses around slurs and epithets, but if this is the case, he goes too far and employs them with a discomforting fluency.Otherwise, I very much enjoyed this book. I trust Waugh to make me laugh, and I am sure that I will turn to his work again in the future.

  • Howard Olsen
    2020-01-22 03:30

    Waugh followed the near-perfect "Handful of Dust," with "Scoop," an absolutely perfect "Newspaper Adventure" that satirizes journalism, especially as practiced by foreign correspondents. This was the perfect topic for Waugh; not only did he work throughout a career as a foreign correspondent, journalists are a recurring stock character in his fiction. Inevitably, Waugh portrays journalists as drunk, fast talking adventurers, who are not above making up a story in their pursuit of fame and fortune. the basic story finds young gentleman William Boot-who writes a gardening column-is mistakenly sent to the african nation of Ishmaelia to cover the civil war that is supposed to be raging there. Instead of finding a civil war, Boot finds the mix of journalists, freebooters, marxists, fascists, and ex-pats who were a regular feature of life in the Third World throughout the 20th century. In fact, if you have read PJ O'Rourke's "Holidays In Hell," you'll be amazed how these characters survived 50 years after Waugh was writing. Ishmaelia is a Liberia-style nation which is being fought over by successive groups of communist subversives (including a college educated boxer from Alabama!), sinister fascists, and assorted plunderers. Boot manages to run into everybody, and inadvertently becomes a famous writer. Waugh's knowledge of Africa, and the people fighting over its spoils, gives this book a verisimilitude that is rare in the world of satire. Some gripers, I see, have declared this book to be fatally flawed because it is racist. They are absolutely right. The relentless mockery of white anglo-saxons in this book is absolutely merciless. No one is spared. The landed class is portrayed as impoverished bores living in drafty manors. Newspaper publishers are portrayed as pompous starched shirts who live to make windy speeches at awards banquets. African explorers are portrayed as amoral profiteers stealing the natural resources from African natives. Journalists are not heroic Dan Rathers who Speak Truth To Power; they are drunk ignorant rascals who are little better than fiction writers. Waugh even manages to take some gratuitous whacks at such sacrosanct elements of British life like gardeners and WW1 vets. Still, I was able to "read through" all of this cruelty, and I would urge sensitive types to do the same; or, at least, get a grip. This is Waughian satire at its best. It's tightly plotted, filled with detail, and very funny. In fact, The quality of his craftsmanship is at a very high level. His ability to set a scene - whether at a manor house, a newspaper office, a colonial outpost, or a stuffy banquet - gives this book a grounding in reality that makes the humor even more biting. if you just want to read one satire by Waugh, this would be the place to start (with "Dust" as the best of his "serious" books).

  • Elizabeth
    2020-01-23 20:12

    Journalists seem to love this guy. He's awfully snarky for a writer from the 1930s--but oh so good. A quick read, "Scoop" is about a man "named" John Boot gets accidentally sent to Ishmaila as a foreign correspondent. The fellow manages to report some news after blazing through his budget and falling in love with a married gold digger named Katchen. Meanwhile Waugh paints a hilarious portrait of foreign correspondent idiots creating fake news and running around chasing ridiculous leads. It's not the nicest picture of journalists, but pretty funny. And Waugh creates the most ridiculous situations in his novels.

  • Panagiotis
    2020-02-05 23:25

    Το Scoop είναι μια κωμωδία το Ιβλιν Βω, που σατιρίζει τον κόσμο της δημοσιογραφίας. Όπου ο τίτλος φέρει την ουσία της ιστορίας αυτής: είναι το λαβράκι, η καλή είδηση, το κελεπούρι. Ορολογία των δημοσιογράφων που χαρακτηρίζει αυτό το ξέφρενο κυνήγι στο οποίο επιδίδονται εδώ οι χαρακτήρες, έρμαια για την πρωτιά της πρωτοσέλιδης είδησης.Το μικρό αυτό μυθιστόρημα είναι εξαιρετικό. Φέρει όλα τα καλά στοιχεία της καλής λογοτεχνία: μνημειώδεις χαρακτήρες, περιπέτεια, ένα ιστορικό υπόβαθρο που αναμειγμένο με τις επινοήσεις του Βω, θα ταξιδέψει τον αναγνώστη. Κι ακόμα περισσότερο πνευματώδεις διαλόγους και σαρκασμό. Ο αναγνώστης εδώ θα έρθει με το περιβόητο φλεγματικό, Βρετανικό χιούμορ. Αντίθετα από το θορυβώδη, εκρηκτικό, αλλά πουριτανικό χιούμορ των Αμερικάνων, εδώ η γλώσσα είναι κοφτερή και πνευματώδης. Μέσα σε αυτήν την φάρσα του Βω, όπως και στην εξαιρετική κωμωδία του Γκράχαμ Γκριν, "Ο άνθρωπος μας στην Αβάνα", οι χαρακτήρες του Βω φαίνεται να είναι έρμαια ευτράπελων συγκυριών. Ο πρωταγωνιστής μέσα από μια μνημειώδη γκάφα συνωνυμίας προσλαμβάνεται ως πολεμικός ανταποκριτής στον εμφύλιο της επινοημένης Ισμαέλια. Η πρόσληψη του ανίδεου από δημοσιογραφία γραφιά, αλλά ακόμα περισσότερο ο τρόπος που συντάσσονται οι αμφιλεγόμενης πιστότητα ειδήσεις, φέρνει στο νου πάλι τον τραγελαφικό κατασκοπικό βίο του πωλητή ηλεκτρικών ειδών στο ο άνθρωπός μας στην Αβάνα. Μόνο που εδώ η χάλκευση τυχαίων περιστατικών είναι ο ακρογωνιαίος λίθος, όπως μαθαίνουμε, της σύνταξης ειδήσεων: ένα ολιγόλο μήνυμα μιας εξωφρενικής είδησης, ταξιδεύει στην σύνταξη και το οποίο μεταμορφώνεται σε ολόκληρο κείμενο, ικανό να κλονίσει συθέμελα την κοινή άποψη. Οι συγκυρίες και, πολλές φορές, οι γκάφες δημιουργούν ειδήσεις τις οποίες ακολουθούν αγεληδόν οι δημοσιογράφοι, απεγνωσμένοι για ένα λαβράκι. Το οποίο οποία όταν αποδειχθεί κούφιο, μέσα σε μια αλληλεγγύη που προστατεύει το επάγγελμα, όλοι μαζί, ανταγωνιστές, προσπαθούν να το συγκαλύψουν. Και σε αυτόν τον ζωηρό ρυθμό κινείται η εξέλιξη της ιστορίας. Το ένα φάλτσο μετά το άλλο σε στιγμές μεγαλοπρεπούς αστοχίας, διαγράφουν έναν μεγάλο κύκλο. Και το λάθος άτομο τιμάται με έναν τίτλο για την προσφορά του στην ενημέρωση. Και τελικά έρχονται όλα στην θέση τους. Ναι, είναι μια κωμωδία αυτή που γράφει ο Βω. Βρετανική, πνευματώδης, εύστοχη και εξόχως διδακτική διακωμωδώντας τους λογείς μηχανισμούς που δημιουργούν και συντηρούν συστήματα και αξίες.Η ραχοκοκαλιά του βιβλίου είναι το ύφος, ο λόγος, αυτά που βάζει τους ήρωες του να λένε ο Βω, σχηματίζοντας μια διασκεδαστική πολυφωνία και πολυχρωμία. Όπως ο Βω λέει στο εισαγωγικό σημείωμα του βιβλίου, η συγγραφή για εκείνον δεν είναι ψυχογράφημα εις βάθος, αλλά μια άσκηση πάνω στην γλώσσα, με την οποία είναι έμμονος. Αυτό ακριβώς παραδίδει εδώ στον αναγνώστη: ένα eye candy συγγραφικό που με τον ρυθμό του παρασύρει τον αναγνώστη εκεί ακριβώς που θέλει ο Βω. Για το άκρως σκωπτικό ύφος του, όμως, υπάρχουν πολλές ενστάσεις: πολλοί αναγνώστες κατηγορούν για ρατσισμό και άκαρδα φυλετικά σχόλια τον συγγραφέα. Ας πούμε για παράδειγμα το παρακάτω κομμάτι (σε δική μου απόδοση), όπου οι αγανακτισμένοι δημοσιογράφοι αντί για τον προορισμό τους, καταλήγουν στο σπίτι ενός φίλου τους από λάθος του ιθαγενή οδηγού:   "Αυτό δεν είναι ο σταθμός, μπαμπουίνε"    [...]   "Είπαμε σε αυτόν τον πίθηκο να μας πάει στον σταθμό"   "Ναι, έτσι συνηθίζεται. Όταν μεταφέρουν έναν λευκό πελάτη που δεν καταλαβαίνουν, τον φέρνουν σε εμένα. Κι εγώ τους εξηγώ [...]" Αλλού γίνονται σχόλια πάνω στις χαμερπείς συνήθειες των μαύρων, αλλού διακωμωδούνται συνήθειές τους. Ωστόσο, δε νομίζω πως καταλαμβάνουν έκταση σκανδαλωδώς μεγάλη ούτε αποτελούν τον στόχο του Βω. Γιατί, φερ' ειπείν, στο ίδιο προκλητικό για κάποιους ύφος, ένας άπειρος και αδέξιος καινούριος δημοσιογράφος, που η σύντομη παρουσία του κερδίζει την συμπάθεια του αναγνώστη, χαρακτηρίζεται ως καθυστερημένος μεταξύ δύο συντακτών, οι οποίοι συμφωνούν να τον απολύσουν για μια γκάφα του. Ενώ την ίδια στιγμή, οι «επαγγελματίες» και φτασμένοι του συναφιού έχουν υποπέσει σε κραυγαλέες γκάφες. Σε ένα άλλο σημείο ο αστός συντάκτης, εργοδότης του από σπόντα ανταποκριτή Μπουτ, αναγκασμένος να ταξιδέψει σε ένα τρένο στην βρετανική ύπαιθρο, βιώνει μια εφιαλτική εμπειρία, περιστοιχισμένος από μίαν άλλη φυλή από εκείνον: τον κόσμο της χαμηλής, επαρχιακής τάξης της Αγγλίας. Ένας εξαιρετικός, νομίζω, παραλληλισμός με τον Δυτικό που βρίσκεται σε ένα εξωτικό, πρωτόγονο για εκείνον, περιβάλλον. Και τελικά, το βιβλίο για αυτό μιλάει: την πτώση της μεγαλοαστικής τάξης.Αυτό που ενοχλεί, είναι αυτό που βάζει σε μπελάδες τον Γάλλο Γουελμπέκ: ο καυστικός, πνευματώδης λόγος ενός συγγραφέα που ξέρει πως να πυροδοτεί με λίγες λέξεις αντιδράσεις στον αναγνώστη. Και αυτός ο καυτηριασμός του καθωσπρεπισμού, διασκεδάζει, ενώ την ίδια στιγμή λέει αλήθειες. Και δημιουργεί έξοχες αντιθέσεις. Ίσως ενοχλεί κάποιους, αν και αδυνατώ να μπω σε αυτήν την εύθικτη ευπρέπεια που στην θέα της λέξης "νέγρος" πυροδοτείται ένα μίσος τυφλός, παραβλέποντας το πλαίσιο, το υπόβαθρο το ιστορικό, αλλά και τον τόνο που σκηνοθετεί ο συγγραφέας για ένα τέτοιο κείμενο.Να διαβαστεί; Ναι. Αποτελεί ένα έξοχο δείγμα ατόφιας λογοτεχνικής γραφής. Θα προτρέψω τον αναγνώστη να διαβάσει την αυθεντική, αγγλική έκδοση, αρκεί να είναι ακονισμένες οι Αγγλικές του αναγνώσεις, καθώς η γλώσσα του Βω είναι απαιτητική. Αλλιώς κανείς μπορεί να δοκιμάσει την ελληνική μετάφραση από τις εκδόσεις Ερμείας (με τίτλο «Λαβράκι»).Υ.Γ. Όπως τα μυθιστορηματικά οράματα του Γκριν στην Κούβα προφήτευαν τις εξελίξεις που ήρθαν λίγο μετά σε εκείνο το μέρος, έτσι και ο Βω μιλάει για μια ακροδεξιά νέγρικη παράταξη με λάβαρο μια παραλλαγμένη σβάστικα. Εξωφρενικό; Αν τα δικά μας χαΐρια φαντάζουν μακριά από μια τέτοια πρόβλεψη, θα παραπέμψω όποιον ρουθουνίζει απαξιωτικά να ψάξει στο ίντερνετ την ανάσταση του ναζισμού στην Ινδονησία.

  • Cheryl
    2020-02-20 19:12

    It is an old Penguin book, the orange and white one, a reprint from 1951. This book, these musty papers are 8 years older than i am!It was a 50c find, among boxes of old books for sale at the school fair last month. Maybe it was even just a quarter. Cheap as anyway. And still in good enough condition for reading; the pages arent falling out, there’s no water damage etc. And it has that marvelous musty old book smell. Aaah.And what a surprise of a treat to read. Having read only Brideshead Revisited many years ago, when i was too young to really appreciate it, but old enough to like it anyway, it felt like my introduction to the satire of Evelyn Waugh. It does make me wonder, where are these types of writers today? The book has lively eccentric characters, you can see the old movie in your brain. Yet i am surprised that i cant find if a movie has been made of it. Some sassy comedy with fast talkers, smooth suave fraudsters, Claudette Colbert, or Cary Grant.....surely something must have been done on film with this.... (read several years ago, came across the jottings today)

  • George K.
    2020-01-25 21:25

    Βαθμολογία: 9/10Πρόκειται για ένα από τα καλά... λαβράκια που πέτυχα σε κάποιο βιβλιοσαφάρι πριν από δυο χρόνια, έναντι δυο ή τριών ευρώ (να με συγχωρείτε, δεν θυμάμαι και πολύ καλά). Καιρό τώρα σκεφτόμουν να το διαβάσω, μιας και μου φαινόταν πολύ ενδιαφέρον και μάλλον αστείο, ενώ είναι και κλασικούρα του κερατά, έλα όμως που όλο και κάποιο άλλο βιβλίο έπαιρνε την θέση του (κλασικά!). Τελικά το διάβασα επιτέλους και ησύχασα. Μιλάμε για ένα πολύ καλό και κάργα Βρετανικό μυθιστόρημα, με μπόλικο φλεγματικό χιούμορ, αρκετή σάτιρα απέναντι σε διάφορες καταστάσεις, αλλά ίσως και έναν υποβόσκων ρατσισμό. Ως προς το τελευταίο, θα πρέπει να καταλάβουμε ποιος και τι ήταν ο Ίβλιν Γουό (ή όπως αλλιώς προφέρεται το όνομά του), αλλά φυσικά και το όλο κλίμα της εποχής εκείνης. Και, τέλος, πάντως, δεν είναι ανάγκη να είμαστε πάντα τόσο ευαίσθητοι και μυγιάγγιχτοι πια.Που λέτε, ένας εμφύλιος πόλεμος είναι έτοιμος να σκάσει σε μια χώρα της Αφρικής, την Ισμαηλία (μην ψάξετε τον χάρτη, δεν υπάρχει τέτοια χώρα, είναι δημιούργημα του συγγραφέα - βέβαια υπάρχει μια πόλη με αυτήν την ονομασία στην Αίγυπτο) και όλες οι μεγάλες δημοσιογραφικές εφημερίδες στέλνουν εκεί ανταποκριτές για να καλύψουν τα γεγονότα. Ένας από αυτούς θα είναι ο Μπουτ, του "Θηρίου". Μόνο που αυτός ο Μπουτ δεν είναι ο σωστός Μπουτ. Έγινε παρανόηση και αντί να στείλουν τον Μπουτ που γνωρίζει περί εξωτερικής πολιτικής και μπορεί να παίξει στα δάχτυλα τις διεθνείς ειδήσεις, έστειλαν κάποιον κακομοίρη επαρχιώτη που γράφει αρθράκια για την φύση. Τέλος πάντων, κάμποσα τραγελαφικά θα συμβούν στην συνέχεια, όμως ο Μπουτ (ο επαρχιώτης) θα βγάλει λαβράκια και θα σταθεί στο ύψος των περιστάσεων.Με την μίνι πλοκή που σας έδωσα, δεν μπορείτε να καταλάβατε την φλεγματικότητα, την ειρωνεία και την σάτιρα που χαρακτηρίζουν το παρόν βιβλίο. Ο Γουό σατιρίζει και καυτηριάζει τα ειδησεογραφικά πρακτορεία, τους δημοσιογράφους και τους ανταποκριτές, με όλες τις γκάφες, το ατελείωτο και τρελό κυνήγι που πέφτει για ένα καλό δημοσιογραφικό λαβράκι και, μερικές φορές, την ανάγκη τους για δημιουργία ψεύτικων ειδήσεων που θα συγκλονίσουν τους αναγνώστες τους. Επίσης σατιρίζει την όλη εξωτερική πολιτική των μεγάλων κρατών απέναντι στα κράτη του λεγόμενου Τρίτου Κόσμου, αλλά συνάμα και αυτά τα ίδια τα κράτη και τις συνήθειες που επικρατούν στην πολιτική, την οικονομία και την κοινωνία τους.Το βιβλίο από την μια προσφέρει πλοκή με αρχή, μέση και τέλος, αρκετή δράση και μπόλικους αξιοπερίεργους και συμπαθητικούς χαρακτήρες, ενώ από την άλλη προσφέρει γέλιο. Εντάξει, δεν ξεκαρδίζεσαι κιόλας, αλλά ένα χαμόγελο θα σχηματιστεί πολλές φορές στα χείλη του αναγνώστη. Η γραφή είναι πάρα μα πάρα πολύ καλή, αιχμηρή, ειρωνική και σκωπτική, χωρίς περιττολογίες και φιοριτούρες, οι περιγραφές των τοπίων, των καταστάσεων και των χαρακτήρων είναι οι πλέον απαραίτητες, ενώ και οι διάλογοι είναι εξαιρετικοί. Με το "Λαβράκι" πέτυχα... λαβράκι, γιατί είναι ένα βιβλίο που με άφησε πέρα για πέρα ευχαριστημένο. Διάβασα την ελληνική μετάφραση, που μου φάνηκε αρκετά γλαφυρή και ικανοποιητική για τα χρόνια της, αλλά είμαι σίγουρος ότι η όλη αναγνωστική απόλαυση θα είναι κλάσεις ανώτερη αν κάποιος διαβάσει το βιβλίο στ'αγγλικά (αρκεί, πάντα, να έχει σχετική αναγνωστική εμπειρία).

  • Nooilforpacifists
    2020-02-19 23:13

    Add me to the list: hilarious. Sort of a British "salt-of-the-earth" comedy, where the common man is wiser than his supposed betters.

  • Chris Chapman
    2020-02-06 02:27

    Orwell said Waugh was almost as good a novelist as it is possible to be while holding untenable opinions. “Outside the owls hunted maternal rodents and their furry brood”; funny how he mercilessly speared sentimentality, given that it’s such a fundamental part of the fascism that he seemed quite partial to. But then internal logic was never the strong suit of bigots.

  • Laura
    2020-02-20 21:27

    From BBC Radio 4:Dramatisation by Jeremy Front of Evelyn Waugh's satirical 1938 novel.Episode 1:Hapless journalist William Boot is mistakenly sent to report on a war in Africa.Episode 2:William finds life as a war correspondent somewhat tedious, but he does fall in love and find himself in the middle of a revolution.

  • Phrynne
    2020-01-24 03:21

    Delightful, old fashioned, smart , funny, not at all politically correct. In fact Evelyn Waugh at his best. It is a very short book but I enjoyed every minute of it. The main character fumbles his way through outrageous situations but always has the fates on his side and he always comes up a winner. I loved it!

  • Anastasia Fitzgerald-Beaumont
    2020-01-26 19:05

    There is a story that has long since entered into the mythology of journalism. It concerns William Randolph Hearst, among the most unscrupulous of the press barons, for whom newspapers were not so much a source of information but an expression of his personal power. After the beginning of the Cuban struggle for independence against Spain in the mid1890s he was active among those pushing for American intervention, seeing war as a way of selling even more newspapers. The artist Frederick Remington was sent to the island to provide Hearst’s New York Journal with illustrations. When he arrived in Cuba he cabled back, saying that all was quiet, that there was no war in sight. Hearst response was “You supply the pictures, I’ll supply the war.” True or not it’s a story about the power of the press and the ability of unscrupulous publishers to ‘manufacture’ news. I was reminded of it immediately on reading Evelyn Waugh’s novel Scoop, a satire centring on the pursuit of a non-existent story about a non-existent war. To begin with I should say that I have not read an awful lot of Waugh. The truth is I’ve never really warmed to him as a novelist and a story teller. As a writer he shows tremendous technical proficiency, and Scoop is probably as good as he gets. But I find his style, the way he approaches his subject, tiresomely superficial. I quite liked Brideshead Revisited for all its snobbishness but I found the comedy in Decline and Fall unfunny and forced, so much so that I gave up reading after a few dozen pages.Scoop is also a comedy, one that worked much better for me than Decline and Fall. It’s a reasonably effective expose of the absurdity of the press and the arrogance of newspaper owners. Lord Copper, owner of The Daily Beast, serves here in the role of a fictional Hearst. Hearing rumours of war in the fictional African republic of Ismaelia naturally he wants The Beast to get the scoop. Having been told that there is a man by the name of Boot ideal for this kind of assignment he arranges to have him sent to Africa. The problem is he and Slater, the foreign news editor, send the wrong Boot! They send the Beast’s nature correspondent William, a man more used to voles and lush places.William is hopelessly out of his comfort zone but by a mixture of good fortune and good contacts he manages to get the story that isn’t a story, a scoop that isn’t a scoop. Yes, the press can work like that, spinning something out of nothing, though more in the days of Beaverbrook and Northcliffe, the British equivalents of Hearst and most probably the models for the frightful Lord Copper.So, that’s it, part satire, part comedy of errors. It’s light and easy to digest, a book probably more for its time than ours. Some smiles, a few laughs, some interesting comic situations, a satire without any real bite. It’s quickly read and just as quickly forgotten. According to the Wikipedia article it was included in The Observer’s list of the hundred greatest novels of all time. So, it’s one of the hundred greatest novels of all time; really? Well, if The Observer’s readers say so who am I to argue.

  • Travis
    2020-02-21 21:24

    Waugh is a realist. His voice in Scoop is flippant, nonchalant, and gregarious. Yet, between the lines, in the subtext, in implication—or whatever way is best to put it—the book is a hard-nosed spoof, at points verging on satire proper. I’d be embarrassed to be a journalist, were I one, after reading Scoop; the book is a caricaturization of the occupation itself. It’s funny in points, and ridiculously so (e.g., the description of the goat head-butting the officer). It’s borderline touching and metaphorical at others (recall the description of Boot in love). Scoop is inundated throughout with Waugh’s dry humor. The book is well-worth the read. That said, the narrative itself is also dry. So while some sub-stories were fascinating, others were a bit of a bore. The author’s flowery prose could use, occasionally, some Hemingway-esque minimalization. The book’s frequent racial slurs are also distracting. Yet: Waugh, in Scoop, is a master of prose. The story is absurdist, yet realist. There is clear exaggeration involved in Waugh’s description of journalism, but how much of it does Waugh consider hyperbolic? (Not much, I’d wager.) And William Boot—not Uncle Boot and not John Boot—is a memorable and charming protagonist with whom the reader bonds over the length of his journey, while simultaneously pitying the poor fellow. I began the book by thinking that Boot was the tragic hero, but he is certainly not. If anything, Boot is Waugh’s inversion of the tragic hero. But in the end, I think Boot is no hero at all; he’s a wonderful countryman, concerned only with his Lush Places.

  • Melaszka
    2020-01-26 19:08

    Rereading this after many years, I'm less impressed than I was with it when I first read it - mainly because the racism jars more than it did then, but also because at times the plot seems too slight and to hinge too much on an improbable deus ex machina.The character of William Boot is a delight, however, and the naif-thrown-into-a-bearpit scenario works very well. Boot Magna is drawn in an endearingly dotty fashion and the romance with the manipulative Katchen, though underwritten, is compelling. Larger-than-life characters, such as Lord Copper and Boot's mysterious rescuer leap off the page.There's a few too many journalistic in-jokes for my taste, though, and the crowd of journalists in Jacksonburg are too indistinguishable from one another. Some of the details of political intrigue and mineral rights went over my head. Ishmaelia itself is drawn with rather too heavy a hand - I can't escape from the conclusion that Waugh views non-whites as sub-human and, even making allowances for 1930s attitudes, the past being another country, and all that, it still leaves a nasty taste in the mouth.

  • Ensiform
    2020-01-24 21:25

    Due to a case of mistaken identity, a mild-mannered columnist on country life, William Boot, is sent as a war correspondent to Ishmaelia, an independent African nation where dissent is brewing between long-time ruling family the Jacksons and anarcho-communist upstarts prompted by German and Russian interests. Boot, though utterly stymied by the lackadaisical and corrupt Ishmaleian government (as well as his fellow journalists), and through no merit of his own, scoops everyone and returns to an unwelcome hero’s welcome.The first time I read this was seventeen years ago. I think I may have appreciated it a bit more this time around – it recalls Wodehouse in its muddled plot and tortuous misadventures of its characters, as well as the brilliant characterization through dialogue. But Waugh is much more scathing: of the fatuous, ant-brained upper classes, of the bumptious but ultimately useless journalistic set, of the oafish and self-centered country dwellers. More than a satire of what was then modern journalism, it’s a witty, often hilarious look at the caprices of human nature. [read twice: 9/1/93, 6/18/10]

  • Laura
    2020-01-24 00:19

    This was quite a ride! I started this when my brain felt a little fried but I was gripped from the beginning and couldn't stop reading it. I had no idea where this book was going to lead me.I got into a good conversation with my roommate about the media and it was funny comparing the satiric depiction of journalists in the novel to news sources today as to how much of what is reported is factual. It is all rather absurd. Not that it isn't a serious problem but it is so nice to be able to laugh about it sometimes.

  • Michael Finocchiaro
    2020-02-13 01:09

    Funny and fanciful, Scoop does not really feel nearly 80 years old reading it now. The various Boots are all hilarious as is Ishmaelia and the Jacksons. Incredible that this was written before WWII but still accurately depicts what I imagine of modern Beastly vs Brute journalism as represented by CNN Domestic vs Fox News in the US,TF1 vs M6 here in France...I think that unfortunately, there are two many Jacksons still devouring Africa except that are Chinese rather than European now. In any case, Waugh is a wonderful writer and Scoop is a great, fun read.

  • Paul
    2020-01-25 22:05

    Odd book really. Very dated language and ideas. Didn't see any of the humour, but the irony was laid on in spades

  • Jim
    2020-01-25 02:24

    Never before has there been such a great takedown of the press, especially of foreign correspondents. William Boot, columnist for The Beast, is mistaken for another writer named Boot and sent as a foreign correspondent to Ishmaelia, an unstable country in East Africa, which has recently been inundated by journalists. All of them have more experience than poor William Boot.One day, the journalists are sent to a place that doesn't exist (their destination, Laku, means "I don't know" in Ishmaeli). While they are gone, Jacksonburg, the capital, has a revolution, which is covered only by Boot, whom The Beast wishes to honor. That's when things go even more astray.Evelyn Waugh's Scoop is formidably funny from start to finish. A thoroughly delightful book!

  • Nancy
    2020-02-19 00:22

    Part 1 amusingPart 2 soporific (unfortunately)Part 3 ...I did have to laugh at portrait of British publishing elite! Review

  • Martin
    2020-01-31 03:08

    This is hands down one of the funniest, most enjoyable books I've ever read. A send-up of journalism with the trademark Waugh biting wit, involving foreign correspondents, a case (or two) of mistaken identities, and abundant with laugh-out-loud moments. If you haven't read any Evelyn Waugh books recently (or ever), it's not too late to (re-)discover this master satirist. I've only just started reading him in August 2014, and he's already become one of my favourite writers. Decline and Fall, Vile Bodies, Black Mischief, A Handful of Dust, Put Out More Flags, and The Loved One were all fantastic. Brideshead Revisited is of a different mood, one that did not work for me. And don't even get me started on The Ordeal Of Gilbert Pinfold, which I thoroughly disliked. So, tallying it all up including this book (Scoop), Evelyn is batting 7 for 9 with me. Not bad, Evelyn. Not bad.Forget Brideshead Revisited. Get yourself a copy of Scoop today.

  • Jessica
    2020-01-31 21:01

    I started Scoop in winter 2008. I finished Scoop in spring 2010. That should probably explain my "meh" feelings about the book. I pretty much only finished reading it so that I could get it off my bookshelves once and for all.Admittedly, the satire — about corrupt publishers and incompetent journalists — is something that I can appreciate as a journalist. But it gets old fast. And the 1930s, British humor gets cheesy really fast. It's predictable. The jokes make you smirk, but they're not really "ha ha" funny. And since Scoop drags on for a long time in the middle, I just dropped it.I'm sure other people will think 1930s satire is hilarious, but personally I prefer modern novels with modern dialogue / characters / humor. Wouldn't have minded skipping this one.

  • Czarny Pies
    2020-02-21 20:25

    Evelyn Waugh is one of my favorite authors. He was a highly skilful satirist who masterfully rapped his contemporaries on the knuckles whenever he saw their actions as being selfish, their thinking as superficial or their behaviour as irresponsible. Waugh however basically believed in and loved England, so his barbs were never met to cut deeply just to remind the English of their faults which he felt they really aware of underneath.In Scoop Waugh is in top form. A journalist is selected for an assignment to a major international hot spot not for his proven skills at journalism nor his knowledge of the territory. Rather he receives the plum assignment because he is socially well connected. In the field, he demonstrates is inexperience and lack of knowledge of the context at every turn. He winds up making a major scoop simply by sticking with the story and following his leads.This is a very solid novel by Waugh although it is clearly not at the same level as he is in Brideshead Revistied and Sword of Honour.

  • Skylar Burris
    2020-02-01 02:05

    In this diverting comedy of errors, Waugh satirizes African politics, British society, and world journalism. Retired country gentleman William Boot, through a series of misunderstandings, finds himself suddenly bound to Ishmaliea as a foreign correspondent, but he doesn't know quite how to invent the news. Somehow, he manages to bumble his way to journalistic stardom, while falling in love and being played a fool. This short novel is an easy read, and will inspire, if not outright laughter, a number of silent smiles and soft chuckles.

  • Andrew
    2020-02-05 19:03

    The book might have gone better for me if I had not read it in fits and starts. I had a hard time connecting with it. I never really engaged with the book or its characters. There were humorous moments but mostly I was rather bored.

  • مروان البلوشي
    2020-02-09 01:07

    تاريخ القراءة الأصلية : ٢٠٠٤مليئة بكل شئ..بالحياة بكل فضائحياتها

  • Nathan Albright
    2020-02-11 03:10

    This uproariously funny novel is an example of what happens when someone uses their imagination and their experience to the best possible outcome.  In the mid 1930's, Waugh was sent without experience as a correspondent to cover the war in Ethiopia against the Italians, and that informs his work here.  In our contemporary world, we are used to bumbling foreign correspondents whose knowledge of the world is limited but who are experts in their field.  It is not a new phenomenon, and this book is a helpful reminder of the author's cynicism in a situation where at least some cynicism about the press seems warranted [1].  In this novel you get a glimpse of newspaper writing in the pre-internet age, as well as some humorous discussions of travel and the accidents of being in the right place at the right time told through the perspective a particularly appealing but naive writer who is wholly unsuited for the task of being a daring international correspondent but whose native pluck and decency serves him well in his accidental mission handled in best blundering fashion.  There is certainly a lot to be enjoyed here.The setup of the novel, which is around 270 pages in this edition, is superb.  A case of mistaken identity from Lord Copper, owner and managing editor of the Daily Beast, leads him to pluck a shy writer named William Boot out of his obscure and peaceful existence writing about country life and sends him off to be a war correspondent to a supposed civil war in the obscure African republic of Ishmaelia.  Through a comic series of events he manages to be the only reporter who doesn't go to an imaginary city to cover an imaginary war effort, and so he manages to scoop his competitors on a real story and earn a degree of fame as a war correspondent before things return to normal and everyone goes home.  We see the lure of mineral concession rights, the poisonous competition between fascism and communism, and the high-handed attitudes of people who think themselves to be lords of the press, as well as the behavior of those who simply want to live a modest life but whose desires to do so are prevented because of their skill with the pen and the ends to which that skill can be put, with hilarious results.Speaking somewhat personally, I found the narrator to be a rather Nathanism person, from his enjoyment of a relaxed life and his passion about somewhat obscure subjects to the fact that he finds himself involved in dramatic situations because of misunderstandings and blunders but manages to cope successfully with them all the same.  The novel presents competing visions about what it means to be truly English by contrasting the London scene with the provincial one, and also manages to puncture a great deal of the pride that the press takes in its own work.  One wonders whether Waugh, who was notoriously cynical in his writings, would have written so savagely about the press without being experienced as a neophyte war correspondent, and while that is likely to have been the case, his own writing informs his work here and makes his native sardonic wit even more pointed.  While Boot is an appealing protagonist, there are a lot of other people involved here who have their own motives which just happen to coincide with Boot's success as a writer despite not having much of a clue about what to do and how to handle a situation that is far different than anything he was led to believe by people who barely knew more than himself.[1] See, for example: