Gibson Square squares up for humour

<p>Gibson Square is planning a raft of humour titles this Christmas for the first time ever. The publisher is to release five comedy titles, aimed at the gift market, between 23rd September and 3rd November.</p><p>First up are<em> Closet Reading</em> and <em>Whose Side Are They On?</em>, which are both &pound;9.99 hardbacks. Written by Phil Norman, <em>Closet Reading</em> is a history of toilet humour. <em>Whose Side Are They On?</em> by Alan Pearce details the excessive legislation passed by government in the last 10 years, which has resulted in scenarios such as an &pound;80 fine for dropping crisps on the pavement, and a baby being refused a passport because the photo was &quot;topless&quot;.</p><p><em>Health &amp; Safety Gone Mad</em>, also by Pearce, is due out on 1st October in the same price and format, as is <em>Everything is Bad for You</em>, a collection of the &quot;best scare stories&quot; compiled by Private Eye co-founder Richard Ingrams. The final title <em>Annus Horribilis</em>, which was a last-minute acquisition, is due out on 3rd November, and is by the <em>Times&#39;</em> political sketch writer Ann Treneman.</p><p>Martin Rynja, m.d., said he decided to branch into humour after noticing a trend in which sales of the firm&#39;s more serious books tailed off in the festive season. He said: &quot;I spotted [that] one of our books, The Art of Always Being Right, by A C Grayling sold something like 15,000 copies over Christmas, so I thought maybe that was something we should do more of.&quot;</p>