Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Life, the Universe, and Everything by Douglas Adams and read by Martin Freeman

Summary from Goodreads:
The unhappy inhabitants of planet Krikkit are sick of looking at the night sky above their heads–so they plan to destroy it. The universe, that is. Now only five individuals stand between the killer robots of Krikkit and their goal of total annihilation.

They are Arthur Dent, a mild-mannered space and time traveler who tries to learn how to fly by throwing himself at the ground and missing; Ford Prefect, his best friend, who decides to go insane to see if he likes it; Slartibartfast, the indomitable vice president of the Campaign for Real Time, who travels in a ship powered by irrational behavior; Zaphod Beeblebrox, the two-headed, three-armed ex-president of the galazy; and Trillian, the sexy space cadet who is torn between a persistent Thunder God and a very depressed Beeblebrox.

How will it all end? Will it end? Only this stalwart crew knows as they try to avert “universal” Armageddon and save life as we know it–and don’t know it!
So, I liked this book more than book 2. But, still book 1 holds the best spot. It’s hard to beat book 1. That being said, I very much appreciated things centering more on Arthur again. I feel like much of my disorientation and likability of book 2 comes from the fact that Arthur felt more like a side character. Whereas in this book, he was front in center again.
It’s not even that I love Arthur Dent. He’s sort of the a-typical main male protagonist and or best friend character. A lot of the absurdity of everything comes from him though. And I appreciate his sense of humor and shock and surprise at amazing things that everyone else just seems to accept as reality. He’s the most human and the easiest to care for. And I liked seeing him go through all that he goes through in this installment.
Slartibartfaast also returns, and I find him a really interesting character too. In this book, he’s trying to sace the universe from being destroyed by robots. At one point, Arthur gets separated from the group (again!) and finds himself at a place, deemed the Cathedral of Hate. This was probably the most absurd part of the book, where I also could not stop laughing. Apparently some poor soul kept being killed by Arthur (by mistake or accident) and then was reincarnated into something else that would also soon be killed by Arthur. Everything from flies to rabbits, to aliens were killed, and I know I’m not giving this part justice right now, but I was laughing for 20 minutes.
There’s also a part with a lost piece of luggage and Greek olive oil that had me laughing for several more minutes. Oh, and Thor is in this book! Trillian has a moment with Thor! Also, after you think the world is saved, you relize it isn’t and it actually all comes down to Arthur playing cricket on a field…Seriously, the book is nuts.
I loved the concept of this book. I loved the characters. I loved the absurdity and the humor. The story and plot were a little jumbled for my liking, and parts of it kind of felt like filler. Like the author knew this wasn’t the last story, but he needed to write something before his better more final installments could come out.
All in all though, I enjoyed this. There is no better way to be stuck in summer traffic, than when I can laugh hysterically to a book like this. I give it an 8/10.

1 comment:

  1. Ha! I liked this instalment more than the 2nd book too but nothing can top the first book for me either! I did enjoy having Arthur be front and center again simply because these feel like 'his books' And I guess I just don't connect with Zaphod as much and the 2nd book felt more like a Zaphod book. I agree: these books are perfect for being stuck in traffic LOL!