Praise for Thursday Next

Volume 7, Issue 68; 28 Apr 2004; last modified 08 Oct 2010

Join SpecOps-27 agent Thursday Next and her pet dodo in their quest to keep 1986 safe from Jack Schitt and his henchmen at Goliath Corporation.

All that mankind has done, thought, gained or been: it is lying as in magic preservation in the pages of books.

Thomas Carlyle

SpecOps-27 agent Thursday Next lives in a world where it’s only 1986, but the Crimean War lasted 100 years. Thanks to genetic engineering, she has a pet dodo, but herds of mammoths tear paths of destruction as they migrate across England. The Goliath Corporation threatens world domination, but the Toast Marketing Board (“Eat More Toast!”) seems to be a significant advertising force.

And that’s just the beginning of my humble attempt to introduce Jasper Fforde ’s delightful series of literary detective novels.

Of almost infinitely greater significance than anything I’ve said so far, however, is that works of fiction are, in a very real sense, alive in these novels. The characters have back stories and are able to interact with “real” people. We have Thursday Next to thank for the current ending of Jane Eyre, in fact. (Because she literally entered the book and convinced the characters to do what we think they’ve always done even though it’s not, in fact, what they were originally scripted to do.)

They’re funny and absurd and wonderfully entertaining, and by the third novel, not without an element of biting satire.

But don’t take my word for it, go out and get a copy of The Eyre Affair and find out for yourself.

Comments

heh, I just picked up 'The Well of Lost Plots' in Nice airport, more or less at random. Very enjoyable, even though I haven't read the first two.

—Posted by libby miller on 29 Apr 2004 @ 06:46 UTC #

Cool. I'm glad to hear that they stand on their own. But if you haven't read any of them, I do recommend starting with the first (The Eyre Affair) and reading them "in order."

There are a couple of story arcs that carry across individual novels.

—Posted by Norman Walsh on 29 Apr 2004 @ 07:22 UTC #

I suspect that should be "fforde", not "Forde". The double lower-case f for F is one a them English affectations. If you use swash italic f's (or florin signs) you can sort of see the capital letter in the negative space between the two small letters.

—Posted by John Cowan on 22 May 2004 @ 05:19 UTC #

If you didn't start reading it, try the audiobook!
It's really great. Listen to it on your own, because chuckling or even loughing out loud without others seeing the reason for it are by convention a sign of madness.
Oli D.

—Posted by Oli D. on 13 Oct 2004 @ 02:56 UTC #