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The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy…

The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy,… (original 1979; edition 2007)

by Douglas Adams

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
33,64664051 (4.21)1 / 1257
After Earth is demolished to make way for a new hyperspatial expressway, Arthur Dent begins to hitch-hike through space.
Title:The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, #1)
Authors:Douglas Adams
Info:Del Rey, Paperback, 193 pages
Collections:Your library

Work details

The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams (1979)

  1. 322
    Dirk Gently's Holistic Detective Agency / The Long Dark Tea-Time of the Soul by Douglas Adams (gandalf_grey)
  2. 2710
    The Eyre Affair by Jasper Fforde (ut.tecum.loquerer, coliemta)
    coliemta: One's more literary and the other more science-fiction-y, but they're both bizarre, hilarious and similar in feel. Most people who like one will enjoy the other.
  3. 173
    Good Omens: The Nice and Accurate Prophecies of Agnes Nutter, Witch by Terry Pratchett (mcenroeucsb)
    mcenroeucsb: Good Omens is uneven in writing quality, but the flippant interactions between some of the angels and demons very much reminds me of Douglas Adams.
  4. 173
    The Sirens of Titan by Kurt Vonnegut (girlunderglass, catfantastic)
    girlunderglass: before The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy - more than 20 years before it - there was THIS book about space travel, time travel, and the "ultimate answer to Life, the Universe, and Everything". Adams certainly borrowed a lot from Vonnegut.
  5. 151
    The Colour of Magic by Terry Pratchett (mcenroeucsb)
    mcenroeucsb: Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy : Science Fiction :: The Color of Magic : Fantasy
  6. 121
    Red Dwarf: Infinity Welcomes Careful Drivers by Grant Naylor (Konran)
  7. 111
    Redshirts by John Scalzi (mcenroeucsb)
  8. 1711
    Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman (souloftherose)
    souloftherose: Although Neverwhere and The Hitchhiker's Guide (THHG) are different genres (the first is urban fantasy, the second comic science-fiction) I felt there was a lot of similarity between the characters of Richard Mayhew (in Neverwhere) and Arthur Dent (in THHG). Both are a kind of everyman with whom the reader can identify and both embody a certain 'Britishness'. And they're both stonkingly good books by British authors.… (more)
  9. 127
    The Light Fantastic by Terry Pratchett (Nikkles)
  10. 21
    Equal Rites by Terry Pratchett (SandraArdnas)
  11. 32
    John Dies at the End by David Wong (fundevogel)
  12. 77
    Catch-22 by Joseph Heller (wvlibrarydude)
    wvlibrarydude: Satire and humor that will split your gut. Read if you want to laugh at humanity.
  13. 11
    The Sheriff of Yrnameer by Michael Rubens (MyriadBooks)
  14. 00
    The Probability Broach by L. Neil Smith (fulner)
    fulner: Probability broach is the story of a 20th century PI who investigates a murder that stumbles him into a place that isn't quite what it appears to be. The broach is equivalent to a Stargate or a demonstrate traveling whale.
  15. 01
    Year Zero by Rob Reid (aethercowboy)
    aethercowboy: Year Zero is a humorous science fiction book that pokes liberal fun at the current state of music copyright, but also tells a hilarious story in the process about aliens obsessed with Earth music (except for North Korea).
  16. 01
    Alles außer irdisch by Horst Evers (Camaho)
  17. 01
    Martians, Go Home by Fredric Brown (fougny)
  18. 01
    Doorways in the Sand by Roger Zelazny (WildMaggie)
  19. 01
    Last Chance to See by Douglas Adams (Waldstein)
    Waldstein: Douglas Adams's true masterpiece, albeit one of non-fiction. Far wittier and more profound than The Guide.
  20. 12
    Space Opera by Catherynne M. Valente (Cora-R)

(see all 35 recommendations)

1970s (1)
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» See also 1257 mentions

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Showing 1-5 of 603 (next | show all)
They say that the comedians are the ones who weep the most. There’s a lot of symbolism in Doug’s humor, although ironically all of it is that life has no meaning, God doesn’t exist, and Richard Dawkins is a great guy. For example, in the beginning he says, Once there was a girl and she had an idea how she would help the world and she forgot, and this is not her story—I’m doing this from memory since I read this book over a year ago; it’s funny the way he says it, although for my purposes it’s better if you just think about it, and actually that’s what I usually do with comedy even if I like it, I just think about it, although sometimes I laugh too—and there he’s doing two things with his forgetful, non-heroic girl. First, he’s introducing a girl who was almost a hero as a sort of apology for making the book mostly about a guy. Secondly, he’s unapologetically making the book not about a girl who believed-she-could-make-it-better, but about a guy who was just along for the ride and didn’t have the slightest chance of helping anybody.

Anyway, like I said, the comedian weeps. (Remember Robin Williams?) I actually think that this book bears a passing resemblance with “Speak”; the only difference is that in “Speak” we find out what happened, why she’s like that, and in Doug’s book we never leave the clouds. There’s actually no plot to speak of here, not that plot is the most important thing; I personally will read a book for a theme, which is what you get here. “God’s Greatest Mistakes”. There’s also really only one character I think, at least among the antiheroes, they’re all an endless procession of ciphers for himself, including the girl, and I suppose that that at least is nice.

I won’t be tiresome by explaining why I don’t think as Doug here does; I looked at the man behind the curtain, but that at least I will not do.
  goosecap | Jul 17, 2021 |
I have much love for this book, much love. I think, however, that a lot of it has built up over the course of thinking, talking about, and referring to it. In some ways, I think HHGG is like Star Wars-- a story that I remember from the telling as much as from the experience. I was interested to read this book again in part because I'm preparing to teach a course on science fiction, specifically on the influence of science fiction on our modern world, but also to see if it would hold up as [b:A Wrinkle in Time|18131|A Wrinkle in Time (Time, #1)|Madeleine L'Engle|http://d.gr-assets.com/books/1329061522s/18131.jpg|948387] did not. Thank my towel, it did indeed.

My enjoyment of [b:Hitchhiker's guide to the Galaxy|11|The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, #1)|Douglas Adams|http://d.gr-assets.com/books/1327656754s/11.jpg|3078186] stems as much from the memories of reading it the first time. I should say, listening to it. Like the history of the book itself, I first came into the story through the radio series. My best friend at the time (where are you, Chris Murphy?) and I sat around a little record player and listened to a funny little science fiction story with an awesome and anthemic opening theme, and laughed at humor that appealed to the 12-13 year olds we were. I think, at some point, we both read the books (in between putting paper plates on Chris' bedroom wall in an approximation of the interior of the TARDIS-- why wouldn't my parents let me do cool stuff like that?!), but they didn't come into play until much later.

Rather, [b:Hitchhiker's guide to the Galaxy|11|The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, #1)|Douglas Adams|http://d.gr-assets.com/books/1327656754s/11.jpg|3078186] became an in-joke between Chris and me (I? oh piss off grammar nazis) for as long as it took to realize that [b:Hitchhiker's guide to the Galaxy|11|The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, #1)|Douglas Adams|http://d.gr-assets.com/books/1327656754s/11.jpg|3078186] was an in-joke for all manner of nerds, and that in fact, we were nerds. We never passed up a chance to say "Beeblebrox" or any other proper noun from the stories (again, I can't say novel because it just as likely could have come from the radio plays), or to notice how frequently the number 42 comes up in real life (seriously, have you noticed that? it's everywhere...). I wouldn't read the books again until years later, as a summer camp counselor who was having trouble feeling socially comfortable around the other staff, and did what nerds usually do-- retreat to their room for extending reading sessions. I think I finished the series (at the time, just four books) again before I finally emerged and made another of my long-time friends, Georgia.

It wasn't until just now, or at least a couple hours ago, that I read [b:Hitchhiker's guide to the Galaxy|11|The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, #1)|Douglas Adams|http://d.gr-assets.com/books/1327656754s/11.jpg|3078186] with any attention to the work itself, as literature, or even as science fiction. And what I realized is, it holds up. And it works, perhaps not as literature (whatever the hell that is) but certainly as good, quality science fiction. Going into it, I wondered if, like Shaun of the Dead, it was a comic entry into the genre only masquerading as a satire, and I realized that to be the case quite quickly. HHGG is no satire. Yes, ti does make fun of things, but only in the "ideas-exploring" way that any science fiction does. Well, maybe not make fun of-- hold on. Let me start again. The observations this speculative fiction makes is only different from more traditional science fiction in the fact that it often is very, very funny. Other than that, not satire. In fact, it meets my simplified criteria for science fiction, in that it tackles an idea (where we come from and why, among others, but I tend to focus on the metaphysical) that can't be done in any other genre.

Wow. My head is aching from how bad this writing is. I feel like I'm getting dumber by the second. My head really does hurt, so I'm going to go have a quick nap. [b:Hitchhiker's guide to the Galaxy|11|The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, #1)|Douglas Adams|http://d.gr-assets.com/books/1327656754s/11.jpg|3078186] is very good, still. And in its own right. ( )
  allan.nail | Jul 11, 2021 |
Oh, isn't this book just extremely fun to read? I adored it. ( )
  Conni_W | Jul 7, 2021 |
Beautiful. Imaginative. Satirical. Brilliant analogies. Exceptional dialogues. Loved Marvin and 42...wish I had read it sooner. ( )
  volfy | Jun 26, 2021 |
Read it when I was a kid. Adams' humour isn't really my kind of comedy, but I certainly appreciate the scope (and epic weirdness) of his vision! ( )
  therebelprince | Jun 24, 2021 |
Showing 1-5 of 603 (next | show all)
Humorous science fiction novels have notoriously limited audiences; they tend to be full of ''in'' jokes understandable only to those who read everything from Jules Verne to Harlan Ellison. The ''Hitchhiker's Guide'' is a delightful exception, being written for anyone who can understand the thrill that might come to a crew of interstellar explorers who discover a mysterious planet, dead for five million years, and then hear on their ''sub etha'' radio a ghostly voice, hollow, reedy, insubstantial: ''Greetings to you. ... This is a recorded announcement, as I'm afraid we're all out at the moment. ...''

» Add other authors (30 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Adams, Douglasprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Thole, KarelIllustratormain authorall editionsconfirmed
Burton, JonathanIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Cross, PeterCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Davies, Russell TForewordsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Fry, StephenNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Gaiman, Neilsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Irineu da Costa, CarlosTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Jones, TerryIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Markkula, PekkaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Molnár, IstvánTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Schwarz, BenjaminTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Serra, LauraTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Stamp, RobbieAfterwordsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Thole, KarelCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Tidholm, ThomasTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Wright, IanCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
潤, 風見Translatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Original title
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Awards and honors
Don't Panic
for Jonny Brock and Clare Gorst
and all other Arlingtonians
for tea, sympathy, and a sofa
First words
Far out in the uncharted backwaters of the unfashionable end of the Western Spiral arm of the Galaxy lies a small unregarded yellow sun.
The house stood on a slight rise just on the edge of the village.          (Chapter 1)
Don't Panic
If there's anything more important than my ego around here, I want it caught and shot now.
The ships hung in the sky in much the same way that bricks don't.
For thousands of years, the mighty ships tore across the empty wastes of space and finally dived screaming on to the first planet they came across—which happened to be the Earth—where due to a terrible miscalculation of scale the entire battle fleet was accidentally swallowed by a small dog.
Life! Don't talk to me about life.
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
[Book 1 Only] "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy" is the title of the first in a series of novels (as well as the first in a series of radio dramas). The five works in the series are generally referred to as "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy" or "The Hitchhiker Trilogy", as is the series of radio dramas. Though there are unabridged audio recordings of these works, the radio dramas are considerably different from the printed works. Eoin Colfer, of "Artemis Fowl" fame, contracted in 2008 to write the next volume of the "Trilogy." Do not combine it with the graphic novel adaptation.
Publisher's editors
Original language
Canonical DDC/MDS
After Earth is demolished to make way for a new hyperspatial expressway, Arthur Dent begins to hitch-hike through space.

No library descriptions found.

Book description
Adams, Douglas, 1952-2001.
Γυρίστε τον γαλαξία με ωτοστόπ / Douglas Adams · μετάφραση Δημήτρης Αρβανίτης. - 1η έκδ. - Αθήνα : Ars Longa, 1987. - 162σ. · 22x12.2εκ. - (Γυρίστε τον Γαλαξία με Ωτοστόπ · 1)
Γλώσσα πρωτοτύπου: αγγλικά
Τίτλος πρωτοτύπου: The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, 1979
ISBN 978-960-6868-64-1 (Μαλακό εξώφυλλο) [Εξαντλημένο]
Haiku summary
Arthur's drab lifestyle
The answer is forty two
What is the question?

Wet, McKenna muttered
A curse up to God;
The clouds laughed.
Shall we hitchhike space?

Let's, for to stay here on Earth

Is mostly harmless.


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