So Long, and Thanks for All the Fish68354

Author ~ Douglas Adams

Pages ~  214 (paperback)

Memorable Quotes:  “‘It seemed to me,’ said Wonko the Sane, ‘that any civilization that had so far lost its head as to need to include a set of detailed instructions for use in a package of toothpicks, was no longer a civilization in which I could live and stay sane.'”

Favorite Character:  Um, I’m not sure.  Something felt “off” about this book–even the characters I already know and love didn’t feel like themselves.

Summary:  Back on Earth with nothing more to show for his long, strange trip through time and space than a ratty towel and a plastic shopping bag, Arthur Dent is ready to believe that the past eight years were all just a figment of his stressed-out imagination. But a gift-wrapped fishbowl with a cryptic inscription, the mysterious disappearance of Earth’s dolphins, and the discovery of his battered copy of The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy all conspire to give Arthur the sneaking suspicion that something otherworldly is indeed going on. . . .

God only knows what it all means. And fortunately, He left behind a Final Message of explanation. But since it’s light-years away from Earth, on a star surrounded by souvenir booths, finding out what it is will mean hitching a ride to the far reaches of space aboard a UFO with a giant robot. But what else is new?

I Rate It:  2/5  Stars   ~*~  Not worth the papercut

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There was something missing from this book; something that I think I’ve identified…stay tuned.
It left me feeling disappointed and–dare I say–betrayed.

This is the fourth book in the Hitchhikers’ Guide to the Galaxy “trilogy” and I adored all of the others up until this one.
The humor is of that witty, if dry, British sort that I so greatly enjoy; the characters are quirky and lovable; and with the galaxy as its setting there are always new places to explore and new beings to meet.

That is not the case with this book.

Sure, our main characters are…more or less the same.  You’ve still got Arthur Dent (a man in a bath robe who has been dragged all over the universe and can’t seem to find a good cuppa anywhere) and Ford Prefect, Arthur’s friend who just happens to be an alien from somewhere near Betelgeuse…Marvin only shows up in the last few pages of the book, which is a pity, because I’m fond of that android.

But Zaphod Beeblebrox (the alien with two heads and three arms who “owns” The Heart of Gold) is nowhere to be found, nor is Trillian, (supposedly the only other human left besides Arthur).
Zaphod has always been awfully close to my favorite character; he’s just funny.

Instead of those beloved characters, we’re given Fenchurch, Wonko the Sane, and the Rain God.
They are, most definitely, not the same by any stretch of the imagination.  Fenchurch is just a girl who seems to have lost something.  Wonko is, supposedly, one of the few sane people around.  And the Rain God is just a guy who drives around and complains about how much it rains–and claims that the rain follows him everywhere he goes.

Yes, the humor is still of that splendid British sort, but it didn’t seem as funny this time.

 

When you pick up one of these books, you want an adventure–the strange quest to find the answer to an even stranger question.  You want weird aliens, an amusing description of some out-of-this-world alcoholic beverages, and the grumblings of an unappreciated robot.

The love story of Arthur Dent wasn’t what I was really looking for…yet that’s the majority of the book.  And it’s only slightly interesting–it seems much less interesting than what is hinted at that Ford might be up to the entire time.

I think that there’s one big thing missing from this book.  The one thing that has made all of the other books wonderful.  Something that, when absent, just makes the story somewhat mundane.  I no longer want to read the other books because of this one–and that makes me sad.

The galaxy.  The entire galaxy is missing.  The space travel and all of the wonderful elements of that are gone, and when those are taken away, what’s left is rather boring.

 

*Sigh*  I wish that I had enjoyed this book more…but it really wasn’t worth the time I spent reading it.

 

~*~RaeAnne

 

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