"You can`t expect an arse like me to tell a story competently. It`s all I can bloody do to work this foul machine. I`ve counted up the words processed, a thing I do every hour and, if technology can be trusted, it looks as if you`re in for 93,682 of them. Good luck to you. You asked for it, you paid me for it, you`re got to sit through it. As the man said, I`ve suffered for my art, now it`s your turn." So starts The Hippopotamus - a novel as surprising, entertaining and side-splittingly funny as you would expect from a man modestly described as having a mind the size of Kent.