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The Salmon of Doubt: Hitchhiking the Galaxy One Last Time Hardcover – May 7 2002

4.2 out of 5 stars 29 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Hardcover
  • Publisher: Crown (May 7 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1400045088
  • ISBN-13: 978-1400045082
  • Product Dimensions: 14.6 x 2.9 x 21.6 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 499 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars 29 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #2,337,087 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description

The Salmon of Doubt: Hitchhiking the Galaxy One Last Time


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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
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By A Customer on May 25 2002
Format: Hardcover
Before you all jump on me, let me say that I adore HHGTTG in all its incarnations. I've read the Dirk Gently books, although I'm not as big a fan of those as I am of HHGTTG. I even own (and have read) Last Time to See. So I'm a bona fide DNA fan.
I have seldom looked forward so much and then been so disappointed in a book as I was with Salmon of Doubt. It's okay for what it is -- a mishmash of previously published articles and columns, random musings culled from DNA's computer after his death, interviews, reprints, and the beginning of his unfinished and incomprehensible novel.
The marketing led me to believe I was going to be reading a new installment in HHGTTG, not an anthology. Even the book itself implied that we'd be getting another installment of HHGTTG, and specifically states that it's not a Dirk book. Well, it may not be Dirk Gently (even if he is the protagonist), but it's also not HHGTTG. And the whole "novel" comprises only 80 or so of the 280 or so pages of the book.
Save your money. Re-read HHGTTG instead.
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Format: Hardcover
What can a person say to describe the talents of Douglas Adams? Well, those who know all about his works, there are no words good enough to describe him. For those who don't know about his works, then now is as good as time as any to find out.
"The Salmon of Doubt" is actually only about 80 pages of a Dirk Gently story. This gives Adams a chance to create his usual elaborate set-ups, but we will never know of where he was planning on going with it since he has, unfortunantly, passed on from this life. The rest of the 300+ pages is filled with the bits that made up his life: on-line interviews, some short stories, articles that he wrote, and some of his personal writings from his computer journal. These represent the best of Adams. Whether he is jogging with dogs that don't belong to him or learning to cope with Frank the Vandal, his humor and wit shine through like a bright flash light beam in your eyes.
This book is a must have for any Douglas Adams fan or for anyone who has heard of the man, but isn't quite sure if they'll like his work. If such persons have any bit of intelligence left in their beings, then they'll love it.
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Format: Hardcover
I purchased Douglas Adams' posthumous book exactly one year and one day after his extremely untimely passing. I have always thought that there is something inherently wrong about losing one's idols. "Salmon of Doubt" is a prime example of how wrong it truly is.
"Salmon of Doubt" is so absolutely and quite wonderfully Douglas.
This collection of articles, interviews, random thoughts and unfinished novel is an genuine treat to read. His unmistakable voice shines through on each and every page. For someone who professed to agonize over the whole "writing thing", Douglas did it with a style that is often imitated, yet never will be duplicated.
I was delighted to see "Cookies" make its way into this collection. I laughed when he included in the 4th Hitchhiker's novel, and was fortunate enough to hear him retelling this true story. He had everyone at this Chicago hotel bar in absolute hysterics some years ago, reliving the moment. I have never forgotten it.
"Maggie and Trudie" also stands out as one of my other favorite entries here. As does "The Private Life of Genghis Khan". The interviews included also give a further glimpse into this marvelously gifted man.
There is no doubt in my mind that the ever-so brief "Salmon of Doubt" story/novel itself would have been a joy to read had he been around to finish it. It would have worked perfectly well as the next Dirk Gently (or possible 6th HH) novel. I found myself reading this portion quickly, watching the pages dwindle and knowing it was going to abruptly end. It did. Now I'm left wondering what happened to Dirk and Desmond the rhinoceros. It's going to bug me till the end of time. Which I am sure would thrill Douglas to no end.
I'll have to ask Douglas when I see him at the Restaurant at the End of the Universe how it all ends.
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By A Customer on May 18 2002
Format: Hardcover
Do not pick up The Salmon of Doubt expecting a complete novel. Given time Adams' would have converted it into a brilliant final product. Sadly, however, that will never happen. The novel is unfinished, but better to be unfinished than completed by someone else.

The book is more than the uncompleted novel, however. The would-be third Dirk Gently installment occupies fewer than 100 pages at the volume's end. The rest is taken up by an amalgam of tidbits from Adams' life. The book's success is the essays, short stories, letters, interviews, many of them in print for the first time in Salmon. They accomplish what no novel ever could; they portray Adams' as a human being.

Salmon is to Douglas Adams' what I, Asimov is to Isaac Asimov. It's not an autobiography, exactly, but it's as close as print gets to establishing a dialogue between the reader and the author. A great many people admire Adams' for is brilliant wit. This book allows us to admire him for much more.
I frequent a message board where a rating of "5" means "Comedy Gold," and that is why I give A Salmon of Doubt five stars. It is hilarious. The essay, "Cookies," used as a plot point in So Long, And Thanks For All The Fish, is a brilliantly narrated anecdote. The reflections on canine behavior in Maggie and Trudie gave me a sleep-preventing giggle fit. The novel portion is jerky in places. An astute reader will spot some filler lines, gaps in continuity, and things that would most likely have been left out of the final version, but no one is pretending that it is whole. Salmon is exactly what it sets out to be; it is a requiem, a tribute to a great man.
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