I read this years ago, I think it was back around 2005 or so. "This is probably really popular, isn't it?" My friend, who worked in a bookstore, said that no, actually, it wasn't all that popular. Worse than that, I think it shows that I was getting a bit twisted up inside because of my inability to get my book published. Back then, all I knew is that I wasn't published *yet* and because of that, I was getting a little bitter. Short version: If you're a recovering English major, or if you're just well read, odds are you're going to enjoy this book.
And it would have been better served by not being written in first person, especially since it kept slipping into other people's heads when it should have been in Thursday's. Also, Thursday is really boring and doesn't have an interesting voice, and I didn't care about her at all (and, ick, that moment where she gets out her mirror and contemplates her looks). The only one I really liked was Thursday's father, and he barely had anything to do with anything. Maybe the writing gets better in later books, but I don't think I'll give them a chance.
The premise of the story is that original manuscripts can be stolen and then changed, not just that manuscript, but all copies of say, Jane Eyre. In Fforde's novel, our heroine, Thursday Next, tracks down a master criminal, a manuscript and interacts with the characters of Jane Eyre.
4. If a book is written in first-person, and you really, REALLY want us to know what the character looks like, it is textbook cliche to have her pull out a mirror and describe what she sees. I wasn't paying all THAT much attention), but the straw that made me put away the book for good is that Fforde CLEVERLY (I felt like the whole of the book was trying just a little too hard to be clever) had Thursday narrate what had happened in her confrontation with her nemesis by putting her in an interrogation setting, where she has to tell the police investigators (and us, conveniently) what happened prior to her month-long coma. Seriously, no one answers an investigator's question of, "So what happened next," by saying, "'What do you think you're doing?' I said. 'It's time for me to make my exit,' he answered with a smile." People write books like that.
Here are some rough examples of what Ive come to expect when I read a ho-hum book contrasted with the twists, both small and large, that Fforde introduced. Example 3 Expected: Theresa boarded the plane for a trip home. Example 4 Expected: Theresa opened the book and sat down for a nice, afternoon read. Example 5 Expected: Theresas dad stopped by the cafe and complained about her moms indecision about which color to paint their bedroom. Received: Thursdays dad stopped time to appear out of nowhere in the middle of the café and complained about the new shade of red her mother would paint their bedroom in two weeks time, which he saw when he visited the future.
And, as it happens, I have a surprisingly good opening.
everything from literature to history.
Thursday Next is a woman who is a literary detective in one of several alternative realities round about now. You need a love and knowledge of classic literature to know what is our reality and what is an alternative (e.g. whether or not Jane Eyre does marry Rochester), but having those characteristics would seem to me to make one unlikely to enjoy this, though as that is clearly not the case, I am in a minority and evidently missing something.
The literature is a very serious business, time travel is nothing of the ordinary which comes with all the fun and paradoxes and cloning works wonders making people's favorite pets out of these guys: The heroine Thursday Next is a special operative working for literary detection dealing with such heinous crimes as forging of a poem of a classic, theft of highly valued original manuscripts, and copyright violations. Thursday soon learns that "Lost in a good book" is more than just a nice saying: The only reason I rated this book with 3 stars instead of 2 is the discussion with my buddy readers which turned out to be great fun. There were some amusing parts and references with I would miss had I read this book by my lonely self. As I mentioned there were enough amusing moments in the book to qualify it as belonging to humor genre. In the conclusion I would like to thank my buddy readers who made the read much more pleasant experience.
After receiving 76 rejection letters from publishers, Jasper's first novel The Eyre Affair was taken on by Hodder & Stoughton and published in July 2001. Set in 1985 in a world that is similar to our own, but with a few crucial - and bizarre - differences (Wales is a socialist republic, the Crimean War is still ongoing and the most popular pets are home-cloned dodos), The Eyre Affair introduces literary detective named 'Thursday Next'. (Jasper, not the dog) Series: * Thursday Next * Nursery Crime * Shades of Grey