Stocking fillers: 10 best loo books

From dogs in cars to online etiquette, while away a few minutes in peace with one of these humorous, original and occasionally educational tomes

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The Independent Online

What better way to spend your time on the toilet than enriching your mind with a little ‘loo literature’?

From funny pictures of dogs sticking their heads out of the car window, to embarrassing photos taken by estate agents of houses they intend to sell, these books will want to keep you sitting on the toilet seat a minute or two longer.

If you’d prefer to spend your time on the throne testing your mind, you can try quizzing your sports knowledge with Sportographica. Or, if that’s too much, you can always try the Boris Johnson equivalent of Where’s Wally, Where’s Boris.

 

{1} Terrible Estate Agent Photos: £4, amazon.co.uk 

 

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It’s hard to believe photos of an overflowing ashtray or someone’s dirty underwear would be used to sell a house. And nothing screams “buy me” more than photos of toilets in the kitchen – you’ll never be more pleased to be in the comfort of your downstairs loo.

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{2} Dogs Hanging Out of Windows: £7, amazon.co.uk

 

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This unbearably adorable book features dogs of all shapes and sizes indulging in one of life’s greatest simple pleasures. Featuring almost every breed from black Labradors to Lurchers, it’s a perfect stocking-filler for dog lovers.

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{3} Fifty Sheds of Grey: Three in a Shed: £4.95, amazon.co.uk

 

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This parody of EL James’ erotic trilogy follows the life of amateur shed owner and gardening enthusiast Colin. Lines include: “She grasped me as it became harder and stiffer the moment she touched it. I probably should have warned her about the quick cement.”

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{4} Baking Bad: £6.99, amazon.co.uk

 

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There’s no “meth-in” around with this cookbook, tailor-made for uber-fans of the award-winning drama series Breaking Bad. From Walt’s patented Meth Muffins, complete with sugar-blue crystals, to a Heisen-Batten-Burg Cake, it’s full of – illegal substance-free, of course - culinary inspiration for those missing the subversive humour of the hit show.

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{5} Rude Hand Gestures of the World: £7.08, amazon.co.uk

 

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This book will make you think twice about reaching for the toilet paper with your left hand (the hand used for wiping in Asia and the Middle East). Other humorous international hand gestures include the chin flick, which means get lost in Belgium and France, and pinching your nose to signal “I find you untrustworthy” in  southern Italy.

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{6} Where’s Boris?: £7.99, waterstones.com 

 

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A play on kids’ favourite Where’s Wally, this fun picture book will help you while away time on the toilet as you try and find the eccentric blond-mop-topped politician in crowded scenes from the Bullingdon Club to the zipwire overhanging the Thames. The question is, will you find him in Number 10?

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{7} Very British Problems: £5.99, amazon.co.uk

 

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Ever found yourself unable to ask a stranger a question without first saying “excuse me, hi, sorry”, or being suddenly filled with dread when a person you half know tells you they’re getting your train? Don’t worry, you’re not alone.

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{8} Debrett’s Netiquette:£7.99, amazon.co.uk

 

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How should one decline a Facebook invitation politely? And should an email to a person you’ve never met start with “dear” or “hello”? These genuine daily concerns are dealt with seriously in this handy Debrett’s guide to navigating modern etiquette in the online world.

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{9} WTF Knits: £3.45, amazon.co.uk

 

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This frankly quite odd picture book includes all sorts of weird and wonderful knitted creations from across the globe from a Christmas turkey cosy to woolly vomit and a takeaway burger and chips.

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{10} Sportographica: £9.46, amazon.co.uk

 

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If you’re the sort who prides yourself on acing the sports round at the pub quiz, then this hardback number’s ideal. Packed full of trivia (from the most capped rugby players to oddest Olympic sports), presented in an innovative graphic-led format, this is one you can learn from in your two minutes in the loo.

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Verdict: While many loo books claim to be funny but fall short of the mark, Terrible Estate Agent Photos really is. It’s full of truly unbelievable photos likely to make the estate agency profession even more scorned than it already is. Should one, for instance, locate the camera in front of an overflowing ashtray or some dirty underwear? Apparently so if you want to seal the deal and get your house off the market as quickly as possible. This perfect piece of loo literature also comes at a highly affordable price.

 

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