- Paperback: 384 pages
- Publisher: Hodder (July 18 2002)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 9780965752619
- ISBN-13: 978-0965752619
- ASIN: 0340733578
- Product Dimensions: 14.2 x 2.5 x 19.7 cm
- Shipping Weight: 299 g
- Average Customer Review: 61 customer reviews
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #163,806 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Lost in a Good Book Paperback – Jul 18 2002
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What Fforde is pulling is a variation on the classic Monty Python gambit: the incongruous juxtaposition og low comedy and high erudition - this scam has not been pulled off with such off-hand finesse and manic verve since the Pythons shut up shop. 'The Eyre Affair' is a silly book for smart people: postmodernism played as raw, howling farce―Independent
Jasper Fforde's fascinating first novel reads like a Jules Verne story told by Lewis Carroll...Forget all the rules of time, space, and reality; just sit back and enjoy the adventure as Thursday, with the help of Jane Eyre's Mr Rochester, fights a desperate battle in which Jane herself is in jeopardy.―Sunday Telegraph
This year's grown up J K Rowling―Sunday Times
The reader is catapulted in and out of truth and imagination on a hectic, humorous and neatly constructed chase that finishes by tying up every loose end in the most satisfying, novelistic way―The Times
The eccentric epic - A read that'll leave you breathless―Elle
Let yourself be entertained by a witty romp―Sunday Telegraph
Don't ask, just read it. Fforde is a true original―Sunday Express
It is always a privilege to watch the birth of a cult, and Hodder has just cut the umbilical cord. Always ridiculous, often hilarious ... blink and you miss a vital narrative leap. There are shades of Douglas Adams, Lewis Carroll, 'Clockwork Orange' and '1984'. And that's just for starters―Time Out
Dark, funny, complex and inventive, The Eyre Affair is a breath of fresh air, and is easily one of the strongest debuts in years.―Locus
Ingenious - I'll watch Jasper Fforde nervously―Terry Pratchett
About the Author
Jasper Fforde is the author of three hit Thursday Next novels. After a varied career in the film industry, he now lives and works in Wales and has a passion for aviation.
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I'm not going to tell you anything about what this book is ABOUT... you'll have to read the series to do that. I hear a new one came out after I thought he'd finished the series. So I'm going after that, next.
At the same time Thursday's father has come to warn her of the end of the world. The world will be consumed by pink goo.
Thursday learns all about book jumping from Miss Havisham from Great Expectations.
Anyways she now has to save the world and Landen.
Unlike a lot of other readers I enjoyed this book more than the first, "Eyre Affair". I think I was more receptive to Fforde's puns, witticisms, etc. The only negative is I wish there was more character development.
In The Eyre Affair, Thursday Next had been working on Shakespeare-related literary crimes in London as a Special Operative when she was summoned into a special assignment with a highly classified outfit. It all related to a run-in she had with a professor while in college. The assignment left her literally flat on her back, and after recuperating she returned to her hometown to face her past and her future. She had been trying to escape from both since her unit was decimated in a terrible lost skirmish in the Crimea during which her brother was lost, and her relations with the love of her life were terminated.
While there, important manuscripts began disappearing in unexplained ways and she found herself in the middle of the investigations. Helped by unexpected interventions from outside this time and dimension, she made steady progress towards protecting Dickens and Bronte from unpopular bowlderizations.
As Lost in a Good Book opens, Thursday finds herself happily married and expecting. But dark clouds soon rain on her happiness, and she has to deal with unexpected sadness. Complications from The Eyre Affair create new problems for Thursday. In the process, she has to develop new talents and solve new problems . . . some of which threaten our very existence! Along the way, she has some unexpected help from new friends . . . including Miss Havisham from Great Expectations!
The Eyre Affair focuses on the discontinuities between what readers would like stories to say and what authors have provided.
Lost in a Good Book shifts that focus to how to read fiction in richer and more delightful ways. If you are like me, you will find yourself remembering sleepy afternoons in your childhood as you day dreamed about being a character in a book.
Thursday's personal life also takes a delicate and thoughtful look at what it means to be connected to another person and what a personal loss really is. Anyone who is grieving the loss of a loved one will find understanding and comfort in part of this story.
After you read this book, I strongly encourage you to move on to the brilliant third book in the series, The Well of Lost Plots. Although the books can be easily understood as a stand-alone effort, you will probably be more thrilled by The Well of Lost Plots if you sneak up on it by reading the other two books first.
Ultimately, these books most appeal to those who love literature as readers . . . and for whom classic characters seem like old trusted friends. Those who like science fiction, fantasy, mysteries and adventure stories will be much less pleased. Those aspects are amusing icing on the cake rather than the cake.
To me, Lost in a Good Book most seems like a continuing literary update and enhancement of Alice in Wonderland with Thursday Next as Alice.
As before, the Britain you will read about in this book differs substantially from the current one. Although the reason is never stated, I inferred that this one that has been influenced by time travelers to the detriment of Britain. The Crimean War had continued until recently since the 19th century between Britain and Imperial Russia. Wales is not part of Britain and is a people's republic that is not sympathetic to Britain. Literary debates are more important than political ones. Britain has succumbed to the military-industrial complex in ways that are usually ascribed to the U.S.A. Much technology is primitive (such as air travel by dirigibles) while other technology is very advanced (time travel, cloning of extinct animals as pets, and dimension shifting).
The overall themes of the book involve the classic struggles between the light forces of good and the dark forces of evil, against a backdrop of separated love.
The satire is layered on with a heavy hand. The names give you a sense of this. There are a number of agents who are assassinated. Their names provide clues as to what's coming next such as Kannon and Phodder. One of the new villains has a name that will make you chuckle every time you read it. The overall effect is a lot like Voltaire's Candide and occasionally has an element of Rabelais.
Regardless of any temporary drawbacks in the book to your preferences as a reader, the charming moments will easily carry you forward wondering what marvelous writing innovation next awaits you.
Plan to read this one in one sitting. It's hard to put down.
How does the book compare to The Eyre Affair and The Well of Lost Plots? I found the book to be more of a transition between those two books than a story of its own. Therefore, I thought this was the least strong book in the series to date.
Thursday, who has slipped into an alternate alternate reality where she has no husband (but seems to have a mysterious boyfriend named Miles of whom she has no memory), is determined to do whatever it takes to get Landen back. To meet Goliath's demands she has to learn how to jump into books without the help of her uncle's invention, the Prose Portal, which has been destroyed. She seeks out the mysterious Mrs. Nakajima, the only other person Thursday knows who can "book jump." Her search leads her into the shadowy world of Jurisfiction, where a dedicated group of fictional characters police the fictional world from inside the books, just as Thursday's agency, LiteraTec, does from the human side. As an apprentice to Miss Haversham (yes, that Miss Haversham), Thursday undertakes her education while dodging evil Goliath persons, coincidences gone wild, and a corrupt ChronoGuard agent attempting to catch Thursday's time-jumping fugitive father (who often pops in to give Thursday a hand).
And then there's Pickwick, Thursday's genetically engineered dodo, who has laid an egg .
The second Thursday Next installment is every bit as fun as the first. The writing is incredibly clever, filled with literary allusions and amazingly deft wordplay. About 90 percent of it goes straight over my head, but the 10 percent that I do get is plenty to make me laugh out loud. And just when you think it can't get any crazier or funnier, you get socked between the eyes with tender, emotional moments that make me wonder if Thursday could actually "book jump" into my living room.
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