Book – So Long, and Thanks for all the Fish
Author – Douglas Adams
Year – 1984
Genre – Science Fiction/Humour
Pages – 167
Having started out so brilliantly, I was really disappointed with the third book in the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy series, Life, The Universe and Everything, and when I was blogging about it at the time, I remember bemoaning the fact that plot had taken a backseat to silliness, and I hoped that would change for the last two books in the series. Well, having just finished this – the fourth in the trilogy of five – I am pleased to say that it is back.
Not to say that it is perfect – there is more focus on plot, but still nowhere near as much as in the first two, and as such I am not sure it really goes anywhere particular, more serving to set up a fifth book in some ways – but it is at least more focused. And of course, it is still really really funny. Adams will break the fourth wall for a laugh, or go off on a three page tangent, or include a line that another writer would automatically leave out in order to get you to have a giggle, and it is this that is the eternal attraction to this series.
The whole series is incredibly accessible. Each book is pretty short, and they are all incredibly readable – once I had started this, the pages flew by – and still stand up well today, despite the pop references of the time – at one point there is a chapter littered with references to the genius of Dire Straits, which still sounds as perfectly plausible today as it did then. If you like your books funny, and more specifically, you like your sci-fi funny, then you can do much worse than to pick up these books and give them a go.