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Book Review: “The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy”

This week we tackled the second of our November’s “Month of Travel” reading, and this week we picked up Douglas Adams’ sci-fi comedy, The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy.

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To my friends who have been recommending this book to me for years on end – my greatest apologies that it took a book challenge for me to believe you. What an amazingly funny book!!!! I have always been a fan of British humor (and a huge fan of British sci-fi… as in “Doctor Who”), so I don’t why it’s taken so long for me to give in and pick this one up. Adams writes with such dry humor and an overabundance of wit, and I found myself literally laughing out loud while reading this. My poor husband was subjected to totally out of context aloud readings of things he couldn’t possibly understand, while trying to decipher what I was saying through all the giggles.

The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy follows three main characters – Arthur Dent (England Native and Earthling), Ford Prefect (Galactic Hitchhiker and content editor of the book), and the book, the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, which contains tips and tricks for galactic hitchhikers wanting to see the galaxy while spending very little money. The guide makes appearances by offering hilarious entries about various locations around the galaxy, including Earth’s entry… “Mostly Harmless.” Ford Prefect has been stranded on Earth for 15 years, and at the moment of its destruction, grabs a pint at the pub, and rescues poor Arthur Dent. Arthur witnesses the destruction of his planet with little emotion, and joins Ford on a dangerous trip hitching rides across the galaxy.

To avoid any spoilers, I’ll just say Ford and Arthur run into some very strange creatures, some familiar (to us Earthlings), and some impossible! Adams creates a great cast of comedic characters, from the flighty Ford, to the adaptable Arthur, a few alien races, and even the manic depressive robot, Marvin. Arthur experiences a very improbable few days throughout the book, one that promises to keep you entertained (and possibly exhausted, if you’re Arthur). This book is smartly written, full of laughs, and endlessly exciting!

This book was a much welcome break after the tedium of Letters From Amelia last week. The book kept me laughing, but I was a little disappointed at how abruptly it ended. I guess that’s why there’s four more stories, which possibly (?) follow Arthur and Ford, and the Guide, as they make their way across the galaxy. I hope I’ll have the opportunity to fit the second book into my reading challenge, but I might just need to play catch up next September when my challenge ends.

I hope you read along with me this week! I couldn’t stop laughing out loud, and had a hard time putting this one down. It’s tough not to move onto the next book, but I have both homework and housework to catch up on! What did you think about this book?!

So long, and thanks for all the fish!

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