Mark Love's Reviews > Scoop

Scoop by Evelyn Waugh
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's review
Nov 05, 2011

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Read from November 05 to 14, 2011

"A riotous comedy of errors" is perhaps how Scoop would have been described when published in the 1920s, and the book feels every bit as dated and cliched as the phrase suggests.

William Boot is an innocent abroad, propelled from his rustic retreat into covering an African Civil war for "The Beast" newspaper, and somehow scooping the real story where the experienced hacks fail.

If you can see beyond the two dimensional characters and the relentless stereotyping (the africans, predictably, come in for it pretty bad, but the French, Swedes, and English countryfolk and upper class also come off particularly poorly) then it is at times a hilarious and wonderfully story that shows that newspapers have changed their ways little in the past century, whilst the process and technology of news gathering has changed beyond all recognition.

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