Jasper Fforde's delightfully zany Thursday Next series shows no signs of slowing down with its seventh entry, The Woman Who Died a Lot.
Despite being semihappily semi-retired from SpecOps, Thursday accepts the head librarian position at the Swindon library. But soon threats from a supreme Deity, a mnemonomorph, and the nefarious Goliath corporation press Thursday back into active duty.
©2012 Jasper Fforde (P)2012 Recorded Books
I like mysteries (particularly British ones, historical fiction and nonfiction, science fiction and fantasy.
Not quite as good as some of Fforde's other books, this was still an entertaining story. A bit slow to get going, this is not the book for someone just being introduced to Jasper Fforde's multiverse. For those of us who are old hands though, the dazzling array of puns and allusions are great fun.
Since the disbanding of most of SpecOpps, Thursday is living in middle-aged retirement outside of Swindon with her husband Landon and their two children, Wednesday and Tuesday. Tuesday is a sixteen year old genius who is working on a shield to protect Swindon from the wrath of an angry god when not attending school and doing her best to do things a normal teenager would be expected to do. Wednesday is working at a do it yourself store and brooding over the loss of his future purpose.
Meanwhile Thursday ends up with a new job as a library director, has a problem with a mindworm that makes her think that she has a third child, and finds herself replaced by synthetic Thursdays made by Goliath. The reappearance of her old nemesis, Jack, now number 91 on the corporate ladder, adds to her problems, as does her rival, the ambitious Commander Phoebe Smalls
Recommended for Thursday Next fans.
I love this performer. She makes each character unique. Her voice is pleasant and adds depth to the book. It is like you read it yourself. Except better accents.
I really like the narrator, it's so important that the narrator does a good job.
Well, Thursday Next of course. She's a great detective.
She does all the voices very well. They're all quite different.
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.
Fforde's interests as an author continue to take him in a different direction than some of his fans would perhaps desire. The focus on the book world, which made the first 5 books so memorable, is abandoned here for a closer examination of other parts of his quirky parallel universe. It's still wildly entertaining, and certainly moreso than book 6.
One constant thread through all Fforde's work is an interest in social satire. Beyond that it gets increasingly hard to classify his books as belonging to any particular genre. His inventiveness knows no bounds. It's somewhat interesting then to see that he's allowing Thursday Next to age and bear the consequences of all the injuries she's suffered over the years. It sort of puts a limit on how many books there can be within her fictional lifetime, unlike other protagonists who seem immune to the passage of time.
Fans of Fforde are already keenly aware that book 8 will be about the Dark Reading Matter. This book and the preceding one have done their part to telegraph the inevitability of that exploration. This book in particular does a fine job of setting up how that mysterious place might be approached. I only hope that after all his puttering around with exploring different ideas, that he comes up with a worthy story arc for his next dive into the Book World (and yes, that pun is intended).
Oh, and about Jenny, I... wait, I forgot. I'm sure it will come back to me in a moment.
You didn't have to have been familiar with the previous Jasper Fforde novels to understand most of the ideas behind this one.
I have heard them ALL...from Thursday Next, through to all the others. I recommend them all, but I think you need to have listened to some of the earlier ones to know the underpinnings of the later ones (even when they are on different "tracks"").
My preferences are espionage thrillers, crime novels, teen novels, psychological thrillers, combat fiction, and occasional non-fiction.
My taste in books excludes the supernatural. Many people like this stuff, but I am not one of them. I should have read the reviews more carefully.
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