A comic or humor novel is usually a work of fiction in which the writer seeks to amuse the reader, sometimes with subtlety and as part of a carefully woven narrative, sometimes above all other considerations. It could indeed be said that humorous fiction is a literary work that aims primarily to provoke laughter, but this isn't always as obvious as it first may seem.
Another form of humorous writing is satire. Satire is a manner of writing that mixes a critical attitude with wit and humor in an effort to improve mankind and human institutions. Ridicule, irony, exaggeration, and several other techniques are almost always present. The satirist may insert serious statements of value or desired behavior, but most often he relies on an implicit moral code, understood by his audience and paid lip service by them. The satirist's goal is to point out the hypocrisy of his target in the hope that either the target or the audience will return to a real following of the code.