THE HITCHHIKER’S GUIDE TO THE GALAXY by Douglas Adams ( 1979) read in March 2010

 

This month the group held differing views about this book. Opinions aired were “certainly not my sort of book”, “I laughed so much”, “ my reaction was not the same as when I read it 25 years ago” and “I didn’t think I would enjoy this book but I did”. Having said this most of us felt we would not read the five other books in the series.


This book is a fantasy merging into science fiction. On the day Earth is demolished by the Vogans to build a hyperspace bypass, Arthur Dent, a typical British man, is transported into space by his friend Ford Prefect. Until that moment Arthur was completely unaware that Prefect was an alien researcher stranded on Earth.Aided by “The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy” they travel in space meeting incredible characters – the two headed Beeblebrox, the humanoid Trillion, the evil Vogans, Startibartfast, a native philosopher of Magrathea and best of all Marvin the depressed robot.


The book is highly imaginative, funny and almost plausible. Much time and ingenuity is spent in trying to find the Answer to the Ultimate Question of Life, the Universe, Everything. The reader learns that the answer is 42 but the question remains unknown!!


This was a different book from any yet tackled by our group. Few of us had previously read it although we all knew it was considered a classic of its type. We decided we might read a science fiction book in the future but would choose something truly Sci-Fi rather than fantasy.