149–153: The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy

“Is there any tea on this spaceship?”

Things these books do not do:

  • Make sense.
  • Be bad.

Home of the wonderful and of the bizarre, The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy and its sequels are justly famous, classics of the comedic end of sci fi. Adams revels in sentences that don’t go where you thought there were going to go, that bring you up short – “They hung in the air in much the same way that bricks don’t.” Perhaps it’s reading them so close together, but in some ways it reminds me of Wilde’s paradoxes and epigrams.

This collection of the entire “Trilogy in Five Parts” is, I have to note, appallingly proofread. Full stops in the wrong places and misspellings abound. (Perhaps the copy-editor was crying with laughter.)

There’s no way to encompass this in a blog post. But when you finish, you can’t help but sympathise with Old Thrashbarg. “Life,” you find yourself saying to Arthur Dent, Ford Prefect, Zaphod Beeblebrox, and the late Douglas Adams himself, “will be a very great deal less weird without you.”

The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy
Author Douglas Adams
Published 1979
Pages 135
Best character Ford Prefect. “Time is an illusion. Lunchtime doubly so.”

The Restaurant at the End of the Universe
Author Douglas Adams
Published 1980
Pages 156
Best character Beeblebrox.

Life, the Universe and Everything
Author Douglas Adams
Published 1982
Pages 149
Best character Slartibartfast, planet-builder.

So Long, and Thanks for All the Fish
Author Douglas Adams
Published 1984
Pages 128
Best character Fenchurch.

Mostly Harmless
Author Douglas Adams
Published 1992
Pages 182
Best character Trillian.


2 thoughts on “149–153: The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy

  1. Didn’t know there was a fifth book. Good to know.
    Zaphod is the God of characters (their first scene in the Restaurant@the-end is infinitely legendary (talking meat, gargleblasters, Hot Black). Legendary.


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