Raced through the Mahon report already? Indulge in these long reads instead
The fifth and final report of the Mahon Tribunal is 3,270 pages long, which would certainly pass the time during all but the most problematic of toilet visits. It follows in the glorious tradition of these notoriously long documents, in which every word is no doubt a keeper.
1. War and Peace: The 1869 multi-volume Leo Tolstoy classic is ironically used as shorthand for “epic” publications. Its first edition had 1,225 pages, which is 63 per cent shorter than Mahon. But which one has the most jokes? (Probably the Russian.)
2. The US tax code (and most of its counterparts): Accountants presumably have mixed feelings about the unwieldiness of the average tax code, which justifies their fees even as it costs them 80 per cent of their eyesight just to do a preliminary scan. The US version runs to more than 72,000 pages long.
4. Steve Jobs: A Biography: At 600-plus pages, Walter Isaacson’s book, published soon after the Apple founder’s death, is “an encyclopaedic survey of all that Mr Jobs accomplished”, according to the New York Times review. The trouble is he accomplished a lot.
5. The Moriarty Tribunal report: At a mere 2,348 pages, Mr Justice Moriarty was brevity personified in his final report compared to Mr Justice Mahon. Or maybe the latter just found 40 per cent more corruption. Who can yet say? Only the speed-reading masochist community.