It is also easily one of the funniest, and probably even the funniest, book that I have ever read.
It is actually the first in a 5 part trilogy (yeah, that is the style of humor that Douglas Adams goes for), but if you like this first one, you will also like the other books in the series, and I recommend simply picking up the complete series right from the get go.
|Helpful advice indeed|
With it's deadpan humor and outrageous story it never gets predictable and you rarely see the jokes coming until the punchline hits you right in the solar plexus.
Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy stars Arthur Dent, who leads a dull and mundane existence until he wakes up to one really really bad day.
Not only is he forced to evacuate his home, as he finds out it is scheduled for demolition, he is soon after approached by one of his friends (who is actually a visiting alien) that reveals to him that the entire planet is about to be destroyed to make way for an interstellar highway.
From there the shocked and confused Arthur gets tangled up in a galactic adventure that includes highlights such as meeting the two headed, and very self absorbed, president of the galaxy, learning the answer to the secret of life, the universe and everything and discovering the sinister motives of a couple of multi-dimensional mice.
The situation is not improved by the fact that Arthur only managed to put on a bathrobe before he was forced to leave the planet, which is no dignified way to have your first encounter with a galaxy full of aliens.
Oh, and he also meets Marvin the paranoid android, who is generally depressed about everything on account of nothing being able to stimulate his incredibly vast intellect.
|The 2005 movie adaptation is alright, but nowhere near as good as the book|
If this sounds a bit crazy then it's because it is, and most of the humor in Hitchhiker's is very wacky, so you definitely need to be able to appreciate that sort of humor to enjoy the book.
It must be said that the actual story of the book does suffer some from all the humor.
The story acts more as a method to be able to deliver all the crazy and ludicrous situations that will have you regularly laughing out loud (so maybe this is not a book for reading on the bus, unless you don't mind people looking at you with raised eyebrows).
It is a small sacrifice to make, though. In the end you will not at all mind the slightly disjointed jumping around the story as you will be too busy laughing to think about the finer details of plot development.
And even so, it is still a decent story, and in the end it is actually tied up rather well, so don't let that bother you too much.
I think a good litmus test for anyone thinking of picking up The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy is to watch "Monty Python and the Holy Grail".
If you think that is one of the funniest movies you've ever seen (and it should be!) then you are the perfect reader for this book.
|Is this scene the pinnacle of movie comedy to you?|
Then you should read Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy
If you spent all your time thinking "this is not funny at all, why do those knights say "Ni" and what do they need a shrubbery for?", then you are not going to find this book amusing at all.
I hope this will reach someone, who has perhaps heard of the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy in passing, but never really given it a chance.
Just remember. Don't Panic!
|Buy from Amazon|