One Thursday lunchtime the Earth gets unexpectedly demolished to make way for a new hyperspace bypass. For Arthur Dent, who has only just had his house demolished that morning, this seems already to be more than he can cope with. Sadly, however, the weekend has only just begun, and the Galaxy is a very strange and startling place.
©1979 Serious Productions Ltd (P)2005 Random House US
"By turns authoritative as the narrator, bemused as Arthur Dent, deadpan as Ford Prefect and manic as Zaphod Beeblebrox, he [Stephen Fry] makes an altogether appropriate reader . . . The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy" (The Times)
Moving further from work extended my daily commute... thank God for Audible.
This is just so damn British. I’m afraid my enjoyment for this book was enhanced a little too much by nostalgic memories of offbeat britcoms like Blackadder and (especially) Red Dwarf.
Speaking of influences I can’t help but wonder if—the very American—Futurama was partly inspired by Hitchhikers? Did anyone else notice the striking resemblance between Zapp Brannigan and Zaphod Beeblebrox? I had an image of Zapp in my mind every time Zaphod appeared on the page.
But back to Britain… when I learned the critical component of the Infinite Improbability Drive was a cup of hot tea… let’s just say it warmed my heart and provoked a spontaneous, gentle smile.
Apart from being terribly British, it’s also dreadfully amusing and easy-to-read. I loved it.
As for Stephen Fry’s narration of this audio-version --- *sigh* --- the man is a genius and has remained consistently on my list of “Fantasy Dinner Party Invitees” for the last 15 years so—obviously I would like to hack into the Audible website and somehow assign a sixth star in the category of “performance”.
always loved Douglas Adams as a young Adult and was meaning to re read the trilogy (in four parts of course) in any case.
this was well worth the buy as Stephen Fry really does an outstanding performance, just bringing the book to life. This must be the best version of this work in my opinion, much netter than reading the book myself or watching the movie.
I'm not the sort of person who recommends things to my friends - they're just so finicky. However, should I find out that a friend is a Hitchhiker's fan AND a Stephen Fry fan AND they ask me if it was any good I'd tell them, "Yes, yes and yes!"
The performance of this story that I know so well brought me new laughs and enjoyment.
What a shame the story reminded me of how old I am by reminding me of how old it is.
I read this book when I was 20. Over a decade later, I thought it was about time to re-read it. So, with a puzzle in front of me, I began listening to this funny story once again. I just did it to feel good, to laugh, and to reminisce.
Five stars, a fantastic book brilliantly read and performed.
So much detail in this book every time I listen to it I pick up on a new joke.
A lover of audiobooks of all kinds, since childhood, when long car journeys were accompanied by Discworld stories. @ReineDesLivres (Twitter)
Having Stephen Fry read the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy is as brilliant as the twinkle in Zaphod Beeblebrox's eye. Fry is perfect as Arthur Dent, who finds himself a reluctant galactic hitchhiker, as Ford Prefect, carefree traveller through the stars, and as Zaphod Beeblebrox, creator of the Pan-Galactic Gargle Blaster and President of the Universe. There is not a single flaw in Fry's narration.
Douglas Adams' classic novel retains all its wit, sparkle and insight as an audiobook, and this story will enjoy repeated listenings, time and time again. Buy this audiobook, enjoy it, and enjoy it over and over again. The only flaw in the ointment is that Fry hasn't recorded all the books in the series, but Martin Freeman (who played Arthur Dent in the recent film) is well up to the task.
"A classic from a comic genius, read wonderfully"
Pretty high up. I had read the book and seen the BBC series beforehand so knew the story (so far) so there was not the novelty factor of other great reads. It was great to listen to.
Arthur Dent. A man more out of his depth than any other man has ever been out of his depth before, and unlikely to be outdone as his planet has been destroyed and he is the last man alive, in or out of his depth.
A great book that everyone should read before the end of the world.
"A brilliant book, brilliantly read!"
When I saw Stephen Fry had narrated this, I had to listen to it; adn I was not dissappointed!
Stephen reads Adams's dry, sarcastic humour exactly so; with his own dry & sarcastic wit.
He does what the movie couldn't; actually make the book sound plausible (no matter how far fetched & bizarre it really is).
Absolutely recommended listening!
"Amazing, want more!"
I absolutely love this book. I originally didn't want to read it, thinking it was a spin-off of the movie and would ruin the really good film. The book is much more than the film!
This is one of my favourite stories ever. Wish there were more books like this, classic British humour, read by classic British voice.
A really good story, keeps you gripped and entertained without stressing you out. The lighthearted and fun syntax is uplifting, the character descriptions and generally everything about its universe is perfect. Beautiful.
Brilliant. Wish there was more like this! :D
"Excellent story, really well-read"
It's hard to find something new to say about this story. It's been wonderful every time it's been told. And Stephen Fry is the perfect narrator.
"Unmissable, quirky adventure. Perfectly performed."
I would definitely recommend this audiobook. The story itself is quirky, comedic and unbelievable until you have actually read or listened to it. I don't think you particularly have to be a sci-fi fan to enjoy Hitchhiker's - a good sense of humour is the only pre-requisite! Hitchhikers does well as an audiobook and I could think of no better performer than Stephen Fry to read it,
Marvin, the loveable depressed android, is my favorite character. Such an original and unique take on humanoid robots; uniquely and hilariously captured.
I love ANY book read by Stephen Fry. His voice is especially suited to the quirky (that word again!) characters and events that take place in Hitchhikers. He does not just read the words, he performs the story and does it beautifully whilst still staying true to the book.
An event concerning a whale is my favourite part of the story... but I don't want to give too much away!
"Cult book all Sixth formers must read"
I'd definitely recommend this book as it is a modern classic that would appeal to teenagers and those reminiscing of bygone years
The strong opposing character
The book made me laugh and reminded me of the TV adaptation created in the 80s
"Brilliantly Off the wall book, excellently read"
If you like your humour surreal, mad, and unobviously obvious, then you will like this book. This version is read by Stephen Fry, who spent a lot of time with Adams sharing their Apple Geekery before the word 'Fanboy' had ever been applied to Apple Disciples. I always prefer actors reading books as they always seem to give it a bit more gusto, and this certainly applies to Stephen Fry here. Overall a very good book read very well. Although I did feel it was a bit short. Just have to find the Restaurant At The End Of The Universe now, I guess.
"A well read classic"
This fantastically witty and off-beat story may be familiar to many due to its various tv and film incarnations. The unique characters and plot are brilliantly read by Stephen Fry and this allows the listener to indulge in an unusually involved experience, not unlike that of an old-school radio play. I thoroughly recommend this title and will admit that I have previously struggled with Adams' work, though in this form it worked beautifully.
"better than the film"
narrator kept me focused and the story was just marvellous to hear and fantastically written
I would not have chosen to listen to this of my own accord, but it was a book club choice. And I am very glad that it was chosen, as it is a treat to listen to Stephen Fry do it justice. It was not written as a novel, it was apparently first released on BBC as Book at Bedtime, or something like that, so this is the perfect format. Once you have listened to it, you will understand just how it has become absorbed into every day language. The story is fine, and there are some great moments and some laugh out loud bits, which are well worth it. But no, I would not say to anyone: You really must read this. But if you do, I think you will be glad that you did.
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