For as long as i can remember I’ve heard and wondered about the “42” reference. As in the answer to the ultimate question of life, the universe and everything. My Father was the first to let me know at a young age that it comes from the novel The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy, but he declined to elaborate further. I decided against reading the book because back then i was quite limited in what i would read. For sci-fi, if it wasn’t to do with Star Wars, Star Trek i wouldn’t touch it. And i never read comedies. Fortunately a few years ago i started to broaden my horizons in this genre. First it started with letting in some Arthur C Clark, then in came Carl Sagan with Contact and pretty soon i was willing to touch anything Sci-Fi. So needless to say a few months ago when i was invited to a special $1 book sale, many of the books i picked up were in fact Sci-Fi
That’s where i saw Hitchhikers for just $1, so i grabbed it. Would i of grabbed it if it wasn’t $1 who knows? it was a pretty slim book, and im not a big fan of small stories so it settled pretty low down in my to read pile until last week. Because the book i was reading on the train was almost finished and i knew i would finish it halfway through my journey to work, so i figured i needed to take another book with me and i didn’t want to start something too big, so i picked up hitchhikers. Halfway through my train ride, i finished my previous book and started on this one. i was so engrossed in it that i missed my station and had to get another train back to it.
From the start the book is filled with humor and quirky nuances which i later found out is Douglas’s writing style. Arthur Dent encapsulates the quirky slightly odd Englishman stereotype. His journey is a remarkable fish out of water story as he clearly has no idea what is going on around him. but you can relate to him in the feeling that you aren’t in control of events happening around you sometimes,
After getting off the train all i could think about all day was, what happens next, where will this crazy spaceship take them. Finally it was home time, so i raced off to the station boarded the train and settled into my seat. but sadly before long the story was over and this here is my biggest issue with small books. The story really just starts getting going then bang its over the book is finished and life must return to normal. Why cant we have books that are bigger. I’m a huge fan of a song of ice and fire by George R R Martin and numerous Tom Clancy books these are huge stories that go on for ever. Once i got home i did some googling and found out there are a few more stories in this series. Why couldn’t the author combine these and make one or 2 big books why does he have to break it up into 6 small books. With so many books in the series if i decide to get them all i then have to deal with the fact that i might get some from different publishing runs, which would then lead to different style covers and spins, which i really dislike as it messes with the ordering on my book shelves.
Did i enjoy the story, yes very much so. but did it bother me the book was so short, yes even more so. The real question here is does the fact that i really enjoyed the story overcome my distaste of short books and will i look to buy the sequels. probably not, not unless i can get them at a very cheap price. I am of the opinion that short novels are simple for younger readers who have shorter attention spans. I don’t want 6 books of 200-300 pages i want 1 or 2 of like 600 pages. So sadly here as mentioned above unless i can find the books at an equally cheap price such as what i bought this one for i probably wont be enjoying the rest of this series
so seriously, come on authors keep those creative caps on for just a little bit longer and write bigger stories and don’t be money hungry and split the story over several small books make it a big one