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The Well of Lost Plots [Audiobook, Unabridged] [Audio CD]

Jasper Fforde , Elizabeth Sastre
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (34 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Feb. 23 2004 Thursday Next Novels (Penguin Books)
When soon-to-be single parent Thursday Next emerges from her comfortable life inside an unpublished book, she steps into a new age of fictional narrative. The entire book world is abuzz with anticipation of an improved Text Operating System that moves from the 8-plot to the new 32-plot story system. But danger lurks when Jurisfiction agents keep turning up dead. When Thursday steps in, she encounters Dickens' Miss Havisham, passes through Emily Bronte's Wuthering Heights, and deals with a mispeling vyrus, holesmiths, and unionized nursery rhymes. THE WELL OF LOST PLOTS---the place where all fiction is created---is an exhilarating romp through literary classics, an insightful look into how books are made, and a jewel in the long tradition of British nonsense.

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From Amazon

Word-of-mouth among readers often does more to make an author's name than any publicity campaign. That's certainly the case with Jasper Fforde, and The Well of Lost Plots will be eagerly devoured by his ever-growing coterie of admirers. Fforde writes playful and exhilarating books (which make delightful sport with the very art of fiction itself), and the experience his work offers the reader is quite unique. It's little wonder he has virtually created his own market. As in Lost in a Good Book and The Eyre Affair, this new novel is as much about itself and the whole world of books as it is about its putative plot. But a plot is needed so that Fforde can sustain his amazing inventiveness, and the narrative is kicked into action with the return of literary detective Thursday Next.

It's almost impossible to summarise the amazing adventures in which the beguiling (and confused) Ms Next becomes involved, but after she leaves Swindon (and her life inside an unpublished book called Caversham Heights), she becomes involved in the inauguration of a golden age of fictional narrative. But this turns out to be a very dangerous experience, and she finds herself having strange encounters with Dickens' Miss Havisham (even more eccentric than she was in Great Expectations) and enduring an unsettling journey into the world of Emily Bronte's Wuthering Heights. But who is the villain laying waste to her memories? And will she come to terms with the fact that her husband Landen exists only in her mind?

As this synopsis indicates, The Well of Lost Plots is a truly unique jeu d'esprit. It helps to be familiar with many of the books being riffed on here, but even if you're not, this will be one of the most idiosyncratic and often hilarious experiences you will find a within the pages of a book. Jasper Fforde enthusiasts know that already. --Barry Forshaw --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

From Publishers Weekly

Those new to the Thursday Next series may feel as if they’ve fallen down the proverbial rabbit hole after listening to a few chapters of Fforde’s newest mystery (after Eyre Affair), which is set entirely in other books. Reader Sastre gamely plows through the linguistically complex text and endows the heroine, intrepid detective Thursday Next, with a friendly yet determined voice that rings true to her Northern England roots. But puzzling details soon come to light, such as the fact that Thursday is vacationing in an unpublished book. Insightful listeners (and only the well-read should even attempt this audiobook) will come to realize that Thursday has swapped places with a character named Mary, who resides in a clichéd, and thus unpublished, detective novel located in the Well of Lost Plots. The Well, situated in the sub-basement of the Great Library, is a ruthless underworld where a host of wild creatures, including parasitic grammasites and fatal speling vyruses, abound. Sastre stretches her vocal cords to the limit, screeching for one character and swooping low for another. In the end, listeners will leave this zany literary circus with a ringing headache and a whole new appreciation for both books and audiobooks.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

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Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars
4.1 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Hilarious Send-Up of Literature and Writing July 18 2004
Format:Hardcover
From the first chapter of Jasper Fforde's third novel, you can tell that the author had a blast writing this satiric mystery that explores the creation of fiction. Thursday Next - pregnant by her eradicated husband, haunted by a Hades sister intent on destroying her memory, and a Jurisfiction apprentice to none other than Miss Havisham of Dickens fame - takes refuge in a poorly written and unpublished crime novel called Caversham Heights. Thursday expects to rest there until the birth of her child, but she and Miss Havisham discover that the death of another agent by a Minotaur attack might not be the accident it seems. Meanwhile, nursery rhyme characters threaten a strike for not being treated like other fictional characters, two generic characters living with Thursday begin to become more well-rounded, and Thursday tries to save Caversham Heights from being destroyed by the Council of Genres for being so hopelessly bad.
The more you know about literature, the more hilarious you'll find this fantasy. Characters are being manufactured in record numbers because Vikram Seth is planning a new novel, and no one wants a return to minimalism simply because of a character shortage. Heathcliff, Catherine, and the rest of the characters from Wuthering Heights attend anger management classes, and Mr. Toad is relentless in his competition with Miss Havisham for the fastest driver in both the Book World and the Outland. And if you're interesting in writing, you'll gain tips for keeping your novel out of the Text Sea, as Fforde pokes fun at hackneyed writing and incomplete character development.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Hilarious literary fun June 13 2004
By erinmn
Format:Hardcover
This third installment of the Thursday Next series is just as magical, offbeat, and hilarious as the previous two. I was thoroughly impressed with the world that Jasper Fforde created with the first book, The Eyre Affair, and was glad to discover the same kind of imaginative detail in this novel. I can only think to compare the quirky world of The Well of Lost Plots with that of The Wizard of OZ (but for book lovers!). In this novel, Thursday Next is hiding out in the book world, the world of fiction. She joins the character exchange program, fills a role in a novel so bad that it's threatened to be broken up and recycled in the text sea, befriends some generics that have yet to be actualized into characters, battles a mindworm that is destroying her memories and struggles to solve a series of murders all at the same time.
As an English major graduate with a good knowledge of classic fiction under my belt, what I love most about the Thursday Next series is the amount of humor in the text. Fforde sprinkles witty tongue-in-cheek jokes about all kinds of literature and literary characters throughout the story. The cast of Wuthering Heights is enrolled in a rage counselling group, everyone ends up waiting for Agent Godot, and a multitude of other characters from well known novels have cameos in this book.
My only complaint about this novel is that I was eager to have the plot regarding Thursday's erradiacated husband Landen furthered more than it was. This novel mainly deals with Thursday's own inner battles against her mindworm and the murders in the Well of Lost Plots. --But perhaps I'm too eager. The next Next book is slated for release this August...so the rest will come in time.
I would highly recommend this novel to fans of the Thursday Next series. For those unfamiliar, read The Eyre Affair!
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4.0 out of 5 stars Far from "Lost" June 6 2004
By E. A Solinas HALL OF FAME TOP 10 REVIEWER
Format:Hardcover
In 2002, Jasper Fforde won over fans from all over the world with "The Eyre Affair." Now he's presented "Well of Lost Plots," the third playful satire/mystery/fantasy starring hardboiled detective Thursday Next. It lacks the oomph and tightness of the first two books, but the hilariously literate mystery is still enthralling.
Thursday Next is in self-exile. After her husband was erased as a blackmail ploy and the world was almost reduced to goo, she is lying low to wait for her baby's birth, and to figure out how to bring her husband back. Problem is, she is now living in an unpublished detective thriller in the Well of Lost Plots, a sort of fiction limbo. The fictional people are thrilled to meet an Outlander (a person from the real world), but Thursday must deal with some generic extra roommates, and a pregnancy by the husband who no longer technically exists.
Then her mentor dies horribly, and Thursday finds that her brain is being invaded by memory-erasing mindworm. She sets out to uncover a black market that is recycling characters, and to avoid the attacks of the evil Aornis. Soon the world of fiction is under attack yet again -- and it's Thursday Next to somehow stop everything from collapsing.
One of the greatest things about Fforde's books is how hysterically smart they are. Fforde peppers his book with the Lewis Carroll, Falstaff, the Questing Beast, Mr. Toad, the Minotaur, the early works of the Brontë sisters, Heathcliff, and much more. What's more, he gives them a wink-nudge twist worthy of the best of British comedy.
That isn't to say that it's perfect. Fforde seems to lose the flow from time to time, and the plot takes quite some time to figure out where it's going.
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Most recent customer reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Good but not like Book 1 & 2
Good book in general but not with as much action. It plays a lot on cool ways to explore books rather than being a full blown story
Published on Nov. 28 2008 by Genevieve Alarie
4.0 out of 5 stars Well well
Jasper Fforde won over fans from all over the world with "The Eyre Affair." Now he's presented "Well of Lost Plots," the third playful satire/mystery/fantasy starring hardboiled... Read more
Published on Feb. 24 2007 by E. A Solinas
5.0 out of 5 stars Did I say rest ??? :)
As you already know, "The Well of Lost Plots" is the 3rd book in the "Thursday Next" series. After reading the first two awesome books in the series, you might think that there is... Read more
Published on June 22 2004 by M. B. Alcat
3.0 out of 5 stars Not as good as the first two
Although this book was clever, it was not as engaging as the first two. I actually got bored -- something I could not have imagined reading the first two which I could not put... Read more
Published on May 25 2004
5.0 out of 5 stars Another Fforde Masterpiece!
(Warning: Reading this book without having read the first two is extremely hazardous to mental health!)
Thursday Next is back! Hoorah! Read more
Published on May 22 2004 by Gypsi Phillips Bates
5.0 out of 5 stars Phantasik Fanthaci Phfunnnn!
I read relatively little fantasy because authors usually make it too much work . . . and not enough fun. Read more
Published on May 9 2004 by Donald Mitchell
3.0 out of 5 stars Lost plot?
Jasper Fforde is as clever as ever in further developing Thursday's world, but for much of this book things feel seriously off track. Read more
Published on May 5 2004
3.0 out of 5 stars This next Next book gets ponderous
It's rare that a new author can build a franchise immediately, but this is exactly what Japser Fforde has been able to do with his Thursday Next book adventures. Read more
Published on April 29 2004 by Daniel L Edelen
4.0 out of 5 stars Another Satisfying Thursday Next Novel
Author Jasper Fforde continues to prove himself as one of the more creative, clever and original authors of our time with his third book in the Thursday Next series, The Well of... Read more
Published on April 20 2004 by Josh Aterovis
4.0 out of 5 stars "Crack it open and, pow, the story goes off at a tangent."
In his previous two novels, Fforde created a wacky, fictional universe in which "real world" characters could transport themselves into books, associate with the... Read more
Published on April 20 2004 by Mary Whipple
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