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"Cop This hoi

Nino Culorta (Ure Smith).

This is a sequel to "They're a Weird Mob," which sold 250,000 copies, has been made into a successful radio play, inspired a song, and has been nibbled at

for filming.

But it isn't easy to repeat a success. Nino Culotta (John Patrick O'Grady) has tried, but succeeded only up to a


Two of the "mob," Joe and Dennis, and Joe's wife, Edie, accompany Nino and his wife, Kay, on a trip to Italy. It is Nino's first visit home since, as a Milan journalist, his editor had sent him to Aus tralia to write about conditions. Instead he became a builder's laborer, working for Joe. Then he married Kay and became a builder himself. Now he longs to see his parents again; and so they all go.

The men go separately in a cargo ship, because they don't want to wear a tie for meals; the women go in a passenger

liner. The men tour England, Ireland, France, and Germany before meeting Edie and Kay in Milan. It becomes a sort of Cook's tour in the Australian ver


In an Italian cafe Joe, listening en tranced as several Italians, all speaking at once, give advice to the proprietor, who is trying to mend his refrigerator, says: "Yer reckon we're a weird mob, Nino. Cop this lot."

They all end up staying with Nino's parents in a small village near the moun tains north of Milan. Here Nino's elderly, irascible father and a Communist villager provide a "Don Camillo" digres sion which becomes somewhat tedious.

The book has all the ingredients that made its predecessor a hit and it is fun to meet all the comic characters again. But whereas the "Mob" went "like a bomb," this sequel drags badly towards the end; it's funny but not hilarious, or per haps the novelty has just worn off.