If you're looking for a book to occupy you on a long airplane flight or a rainy day at the beach, I can recommend the highly readable Skios by Michael Frayn. Frayn is no stranger to farce, having written the hilarious play “Noises Off” and the deliciously entertaining novel “Headlong” (Country Life).
Set on the fictional Greek island of Skios, this farce begins in a classic way with a case of mistaken identity. Nikki, the blond and ambitious personal assistant to the head of the Fred Toppler Foundation, arrives at the airport to pick up the featured speaker for the foundation's annual gathering. When she holds up the name Dr Norman Wilfred to the arriving passengers, an attractive scoundrel name Oliver Fox impulsively steps forward and assumes the role of a man scheduled to speak on the compelling topic of “Innovation and Governance: The Promise of Scientometrics,”
How could he possibly pull this off, and why doesn't Dr. Wilfred immediately correct the error? You'll just have to put yourself in Frayn's hands and let him carry you through a dizzying series of wild taxi rides, lost luggage, mosquito netting, Greek security guards and so many mistaken identities that I lost count.
In the end Frayn can't quite keep all his plates spinning and things come to a crashing and somewhat confusing conclusion, but by that time I was so entertained that I didn't really care.