Title: Advanced Banter: The Q.i. Book of Quotations
Author: John Lloyd and John Mitchinson
Page Count/Review Word Count: 432
The problem that we have here is that there’s not enough about this book that makes it feel like a Q.i. book – sure, it’s written by the show’s creators and it includes a prologue by Stephen Fry (and even a jokey proverb by Alan Davies), but once you actually get into it, it’s just the same as every other collection of quotations that are on the market.
It’s actually kind of daunting to read it, because there’s such a huge amount of information packed in such a (relatively) small amount of space. It’s just back to back quotations from the start to the finish, and if that’s what you’re looking for then that’s a great thing. I guess I was just hoping for them to be put in context – more context than the fairly arbitrary categorisations that the authors use.
That’s why I gave this book a seven, my default rating for any book which is professionally written but which nevertheless leaves a little to be desired. There’s nothing wrong with this book at all, but I can’t help feeling like it could’ve been a little better. All of the other Q.i. books are packed full of context, and I would have liked to have known a bit more about some of the people who are quoted here.
Still, there are plenty of quotes here that I’d never come across before, and it does also have a useful index at the end for you to look up the people that you’re interested in. There’s a good variety of sources, too – on the cover alone, they reference Billy Connolly, Steve Martin, Dolly Parton, Albert Einstein and P. G. Wodehouse.
You’d expect nothing less from Lloyd and Mitchinson – they’re clearly two guys who like to do their research, and they’ve done plenty of research here, and so there was always going to be a certain amount of skill shown here. It’s just a bit of a shame that it didn’t live up to its full potential, and I’d go so far as to rank it as the worst of the collection.
So I’d suggest that you try one of the other Q.i. books, like the Q.i. Book of the Dead or even just The Book of General Ignorance. If you still want more then you can move on to this one afterwards. Let me know what you think once you’ve read them!