This hardback book, published in 1994, was an instant success, and had to be reprinted within a year. It used illustrations from Victorian comics and illustrated journals, which seemed to me to fit the "mood" of most of the stories, which were, by and large, simple and gentle -- and ultimately quite kind, compared with the jokes told by stand-up comics today.
The book has now been out of print for many years. Will it be reprinted again? Who knows? There always seem to be so many other priorities.......
These titles are now all out of print. However, you may be lucky enough to find copies either at the Welsh Books Council or at a number of local bookshops in Pembrokeshire. If all else fails, you can no doubt find the books in the local library...........
The Best Pembrokeshire Jokes by Brian John, 2000, A5 format, full colour cover, 64 pp, perfect bound, price £5.99, ISBN 0 905559 71 1. The book contains 25 cartoons and almost 100 jokes, including many which are previously unpublished together with “old favourites” from the earlier volumes. The standard Pembrokeshire joke book, produced mainly for the visitor market.
The Best Cardi Jokes by Brian John, 1995, 1997 (reprinted), ISBN 0 905559 70 3, paperback, 32 pp, £3.25. Cardi jokes are told throughout Wales and further afield, poking gentle fun at the legendary “tight-fistedness” of Cardiganshire people. Their tendency to take great care of their money, and to drive hard bargains in all their transactions, is a source of pride (and amusement) within and outside the county. The book has now been reprinted and sells very well in North Pembs and Cardiganshire.
Up Among the Mountain Men by Brian John, 1997, ISBN 0 905559 74 6, paperback, 48 pp, £4.50 (North Pembrokeshire jokes) The jokes in this book come from the Welsh-speaking community of North Pembrokeshire. (Those who live in the north are referred to by their southern neighbours as “mountain men”.) There are 65 jokes between the covers, demonstrating a very typical Welsh sense of humour. Illustrated by many Victorian cartoons.
Pembrokeshire Humour by Brian John, 1994, 1995 (reprinted), ISBN 0 905559 69 X, hardback, 144 pp, £9.75. OP This book has sold 4,000 copies since it first appeared in 1994, and has found its way into many of the homes of Pembrokeshire people. It has also become an indispensible reference work for those involved in the after-dinner speaking circuit, or those who have to make a one-off wedding speech. There are more than 250 jokes in the book, grouped into 14 chapters. The book’s 40 charming illustrations are taken from Victorian journals.
Funny Business Down Below by Brian John, 1997, ISBN 0 905559 75 4, paperback, 48 pp, £4.50 (South Pembrokeshire jokes) OP This little book is designed to reinforce all the prejudices which North Pembrokeshire people have about their neighbours who live in the deep south. The jokes all come from the English-speaking community to the south of the Landsker line. There are over 70 jokes in the book, collected during several years of rib-tickling research.