rating: 4 of 5 stars
A quick, fun read leaving you with a great admiration for Fforde’s imagination and cavalier literary liberties. Thank you to Aaron for a terrific recommendation, succeeding in getting me back to sprinkling my normal business-book diet with some lighthearted fiction.
The product description from Amazon.com describes it well:
In Jasper Fforde's Great Britain, circa 1985, time travel is
routine, cloning is a reality (dodos are the resurrected pet of
choice), and literature is taken very, very seriously. England is a
virtual police state where an aunt can get lost (literally) in a
Wordsworth poem and forging Byronic verse is a punishable offense. All
this is business as usual for Thursday Next, renowned Special Operative
in literary detection. But when someone begins kidnapping characters
from works of literature and plucks Jane Eyre from the pages of
BrontÃ«'s novel, Thursday is faced with the challenge of her career.
Fforde's ingenious fantasy-enhanced by a Web site that re-creates the
world of the novel–unites intrigue with English literature in a
delightfully witty mix.
Love being able to add ‘bibliowit’ to my vocabulary (compliments to the WSJ review on the book jacket) and I keep thinking that this was the perfect book for me to recommit to reading in 2009 precisely because of all of Fforde’s “literary allusion and bibliowit.” I was left with a list of books, mostly classics, that I haven’t read since college and have forgotten so much of, which I’d love to reread again now. Then I could trace my calendar to read The Eyre Affair again at the end of the year, to newly appreciate some references that probably flew right past me.
As for the “clever wordplay,” the naming and characterization of Braxton Hicks really cracked me up the most. Every woman who has ever carried a child will understand.
View all my reviews (at Goodreads).
You might also want to check out this page for my business books:
Mana‘o on a Virtual Bookshelf.
Postscript: If you are a blogger, the bones for this post came from a great “post this review to your blog” option at GoodReads, a social network for readers that will give you even more incentive to read more this year with me too!