Friday, May 4, 2007

Dave reads books again

'Again' because I can't remember how many times I've used that title. This is 3 or 4.

Finally read the copy of Mostly Harmless by Douglas Adams I've had laying around for awhile. This passage seemed very appropreate to my current state:

Arthur had almost given up. That is to say, he was not going to give up. He was absolutely not going to give up. Not now. Not ever. But if he had been the sort of person who was going to give up, this was probably the time he would have done it.

As long as I'm mentioning Mostly Harmless, might as well give it a minireview. This book is nowhere near as funny as the original Hitchikers Guide to the Galaxy trilogy. It does however have some chuckles in it, which is not something I'd feel comfortable saying about the fourth book in the (misnamed) trilogy, So Long and Thanks for all the Fish. Part of what holds the book back is that the ending is a real bummer. I'm a firm believer that humorous, tounge in cheek books should have similar, or at least ironic, endings. The ending in fact feels sufficiantly out of place I can't help but believe ehat, were he not dead, Adams would have continued the story somehow and the end become a cliffhanger sort of thing leading up to a new book.
The other problem in this book is the fact that it involves parallel universes. Adams even talks about this difficulty in the book itself. Not that such things can't be used well in SF, but I wasn't really satisfied with how they were used here. I was never really certain which universe things were happening in, which is rather a big thing to be uncertain about.

If you liked HHGTTG but ...Fish didn't do much for you, I'd still say Mostly Harmless was worth a readthrough. If you haven't read HHGTTG, do so.


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