It's been 14 years since Thursday pegged out at the 1988 SuperHoop, and Friday is now a difficult 16-year-old. However, Thursday's got bigger problems. Sherlock Holmes is killed at the Rheinback Falls and his series is stopped in its tracks. And before this can be corrected, Miss Marple dies suddenly in a car accident, bringing her series to a close as well. When Thursday receives a death threat clearly intended for her written self, she realizes what's going on: there is a serial killer on the loose in the Bookworld. And that's not all: The Goliath Corporation is trying to deregulate book travel.
Packed with word play, bizarre and entertaining subplots, and old-fashioned suspense, Thursday's return is sure to be celebrated by Jasper's fanatical fans and the critics who have loved him since the beginning.
Delve into Jasper Fforde's literary universe with the other books in his Thursday Next fantasy/detective series.
©2007 Jasper Fforde; (P)2007 Recorded Books, LLC
"Fans of satiric literary humor are in for a treat." (Publishers Weekly)
The Thursday Next series and the rest of Fforde's quirky novels are, and always will be, high on my list of favorite books. Every one of them is insanely clever, creative, funny, and loaded with all kinds of literary references from Charles Dickens, the Brontes, Jane Austen, to Humpty Dumpty.
This latest installment is every bit as amazing as the previous ones. My only complaint is that the pace fell slightly slow in just a few places. There are a lot of seemingly loose ends in the story, but no doubt the author will use them to develop even more surprising plots in the future books.
My interests run to psychology, popular science, history, world literature, and occasionally something fun like Jasper Fforde. It seems like the only free time I have for reading these days is when I'm in the car so I am extremely grateful for audio books. I started off reading just the contemporary stuff that I was determined not to clutter up my already stuffed bookcases with. And now audio is probably 90% of my "reading" matter.
I love the Thursday Next series. If you're a book nerd who loves the classics and wordplay and alternate universes and hardboiled detective stories and straight up mysteries and a bit of scifi and time travel, this is for you. Jasper Fforde is endlessly clever and inventive. All these books stand alone just fine by themselves, but if you're patient enough to work your way through them all you'll discover Fforde has done something more significant than just write a bunch of random sequels.
Fforde can't seem to miss with Thursday Next and satirizing literature, literati, and the larger world. Not terribly deep, nor his best book, but definitely funny and mental comfort food. It's great to see how Thursday adapts to being a mom of a teenager.
And yes, it is clearly the first among more sequels to come.
Jasper Fforde is witty. Definitely witty. The whole thing about the stupidity surplus is really great stuff. It's a funny idea. Luckily America has no stupidity surplus. Would hate to have to spend that sucker.
But the real kicker, the real wit, was the whole spoof on reality shows. Reality shows are really pathetic these days, and they get more pathetic day by day, and they are absolutely headed the way Jasper describes them in this book. For example, I saw about ten minutes of a reality show yesterday on VH1 or MTV. The show was called "The next white rapper" or some nonsense. In the disqualification round, which is the part I witnessed, these people made up 10 second rhymes about booze, broads and something else I forget. At any rate the loser who was voted off had to give up his sneakers and leave the show. Unbelievably pathetic.
The idea of short attention spans is dead to right also. With the exception of audiobooks I can focus for about ten minutes on any one thing. Any more than that and I'm screwed. To try to actually read a book with my eyes; well now that's really pushing it, and being able to concentrate through a movie, no way. Short attention spans are becoming an Anglo world dysfunction. Probably has something to do with the pharmaceuticals or other diversionary chemicals we all ingest regularly in the Anglicized world.
Really funny book.
This is the third Thursday Next novel I have read (I started out of order and accidentally have stayed that way). I love the idea of Thursday Next and the Bookworld. Fforde's cleverness and irreverence know no bounds! However, I think I'd like this book more if one or two of the several storylines were removed, so I could focus more on what was happening and not feel like I was consistently just a little bit lost.
The narrator is fantastic.
I have loved the Thursday Next books, but I worry they've run their course. The creativity is still there -- cheese smuggling and fictional piano juggling. I imagine jasper putting a bunch of random concepts on slips of paper and pulling two out and trying to figure out how to make them weave together into a story. This is great fun, but the story has lost steam. The exciting bits are mostly gone and the evil twin(s) scenario -- designed no doubt to lambast pulp fiction -- just don't motivate the same way as restoring an eradicated lover or defeating a nemesis like Acheron Hades. Even Goliath has taken a back seat in this one. Fforde talks about what happens to serial novels gone soft. I hope he didn't just do it here.
I have always enjoyed Jasper's books, but this one took me for a spin - and I am not talking about the book. Whoever was in charge of putting the audio together should have paid just a wee bit more attention. It goes normally from chapter 1 to chapter 15, then goes back to chapter 12 and repeats. Ok.. so... I blunder... Oh, wait... at chapter 18, it goes back to 15 again in mid sentence.
Maybe... just maybe they will fix this so we can all enjoy the wonderful book without having to hunt through to find the story in an ordered fashion.
I love to read mysteries, histories, biographies, humor, and Jane Austen.
Another outstanding Thursday Next novel. Being the mom of two teens myself, I laughed and wept as Thursday tries to deal with her surly teenaged son. Sometimes the plot seems to make no sense, based on the series so far, but just stick with it... (I can't be more specific without ruining some of the delightful surprises.)
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