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Lost in a Good Book (2002)

by Jasper Fforde

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Thursday Next (2)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
9,220236871 (4.07)499
Thursday Next, literary detective and newlywed, is back to embark on an adventure that begins, quite literally on her own doorstep. It seems that Landen, her husband of four weeks, actually drowned in an accident when he was two years old. Someone, somewhere, sometime, is responsible. The sinister Goliath Corporation wants its operative Jack Schitt out of the poem in which Thursday trapped him, and it will do almost anything to achieve this - but bribing the ChronoGuard? Is that possible? Having barely caught her breath after The Eyre Affair, Thursday must battle corrupt politicians, try to save the world from extinction, and help the Neanderthals to species self-determination. Mastadon migrations, journeys into Just William, a chance meeting with the Flopsy Bunnies, and violent life-and-death struggles in the summer sales are all part of a greater plan. But whose? and why?… (more)
  1. 10
    Sideways Stories from Wayside School by Louis Sachar (changsbooks)
    changsbooks: If you loved the Wayside School series as a kid, it's time to graduate to Jasper Fforde's own brand of absurdism.
  2. 00
    Freddy and Fredericka by Mark Helprin (carlym)
  3. 00
    Libriomancer by Jim C. Hines (TomWaitsTables)
  4. 11
    Fables, Vol. 01: Legends in Exile by Bill Willingham (TomWaitsTables)
  5. 00
    The Rook by Daniel O'Malley (LongDogMom)
    LongDogMom: Same kind of quirky humour and style
  6. 02
    Who's Afraid of Beowulf? by Tom Holt (Dr.Science)
    Dr.Science: The English author Tom Holt is relatively unknown in America, but very popular in England. If you enjoy Jasper Fforde or Christopher Moore you will most certainly enjoy Tom Holt's wry sense of English humor and the absurd. He has written a number of excellent books including Expecting Someone Taller, and Flying Dutch, but they may be difficult to find at your library or bookstore.… (more)
  7. 03
    Great Expectations by Charles Dickens (Cecrow)
    Cecrow: Also featuring Miss Havisham.
  8. 05
    Franklyn [2008 film] by Gerald McMorrow (MyriadBooks)
    MyriadBooks: For washing and washing machine directions.
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» See also 499 mentions

English (227)  German (3)  Spanish (2)  French (2)  Dutch (1)  Italian (1)  All languages (236)
Showing 1-5 of 227 (next | show all)
This series is just as funny and clever as it was 20 years ago. So nice to be re-reading, like hanging out with an old friend. ( )
  punkinmuffin | Apr 30, 2024 |
This is the sequel to 'The Eyre Affair' which I admit to having had problems with - and I had some with this book too. The invention continues here with one thing piled on to another - now we have magnetic tubes that go through the centre of the Earth, for example, as a quicker means of travel than airships, even though aeroplanes have clearly been invented in this reality, because again a small one turns up in this story. The travel tubes are there to get Thursday quickly to Japan; no other reason as far as I can see.

If the alternative history and also time travel wasn't enough (Thursday's father is a time traveller classified rogue whom other time travellers are trying to arrest and do something nasty to), in this story, she is faced with her husband being eradicated by a combination of said time travellers and the corrupt Goliath Corporation who have changed history so that he was not rescued by his father as a baby. And her father tells her that all life on EArth will soon be changed to a pink gloop unless she can solve the reason why. Meanwhile, an unknown enemy is trying to kill her in various inventive ways.

I did feel a bit of sympathy for the character in this book as she is pregnant and badly missing her husband and the scene where she goes home and finds his elderly parents there and they turn her away is quite touching. I did also continue to enjoy the inclusion of dodos and the fact that her pet one Pickwick lays an egg. But the book does take off on rather boggling lines when it seems that Thursday can develop the ability to travel into books without the aid of an invention such as her uncle's Portal which was destroyed after the first book in the series. She then meets various wacky literary characters and is mentored by Miss Havisham. There is a lot of silly stuff such as a riot in a book shop where people are gunning each other down supposedly to get a good bargain.

I suppose one of the problems I have with this book and its predecessor is that it tries too hard to be clever and witty. Meanwhile, basic items such as grammar and plot quite often go by the by, and often, silly names substitute for characterisation. The book also doesn't adhere to its own rules - although it was clear in 'The Eyre Affair' that characters had to stick to the plot and dialogue of their book so that they had to be present in certain places to say certain words at certain times, in this one they can go gallivanting around and do all sorts of other things - although there is a Character Exchange programme to allow characters to escape the boredom of their roles by swapping with characters from other books, Miss Havisham was certainly missing from 'Great Expectations' for quite a while without anyone 'filling in' for her, and other characters do the same. So given all these reservations, I won't be reading any more in this series. ( )
  kitsune_reader | Nov 23, 2023 |
I’ve only just begun my re-read of this series, but if I recall correctly, this is my favourite volume. I believe it was also the first one I read, in a rare incidence of reading a series out of order. But, as quirky, interesting and unique as The Eyre Affair is, this is the true beginning of Thursday Next’s evolution into a superhero. We are introduced to Jurisfiction, the organization peopled by fictional and nonfictional characters who manage affairs inside books, and how things in the book world affect things outside. It all comes from such an incomprehensible depth of imagination it boggles my mind. If I hadn’t had real life encounters with Jasper Fforde I might think he wasn’t real either. In true superhero fashion, Thursday finds herself constantly in precarious situations, and manages to get herself out (sometimes with fortuitous intervention from uncommon quarters), all in the name of justice. And the story is littered with literary witticisms that would tickle any avid reader. Right now I must pause my return to Next-land, but I fully intend to return and see the series through. ( )
  karenchase | Jun 14, 2023 |
Did. Not. Finish.

The first chapter of this book, the first 18 pages, were absolutely dreadful; there was zero reason to read further. Glancing forward to pages and passages at random, just to give it a second, third, and forth chance... it was more of the same.

I did not "get it." And as much as I hate to say it, it used to be that picking up ANY Penguin book was worthwhile. This horrendous book in my opinion is a major black eye in the name of Penguin publishing. ( )
  Picathartes | Oct 28, 2022 |
ok...now I'm hooked...very good and love the characters.
  DarrinLett | Aug 14, 2022 |
Showing 1-5 of 227 (next | show all)
In Lost in a Good Book and The Well of Lost Plots, Fforde gets a bit bogged down in all the details of the fictional universe.
added by Katya0133 | editGalef, David, Yale Review (Oct 1, 2008)
 
There is a certain self-delighted quality to all this cleverness that would probably become annoying if Fforde weren't so resolutely unclever about his own writing. By and large, the story bounds along in one-sentence paragraphs that J. K. Rowling would be proud of.
 

» Add other authors (18 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Fforde, Jasperprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Koen, ViktorIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Perez, JosephCover designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Roberts, MaggyIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Roberts, MariPhotographersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Sastre, ElizabethNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Stern, JoachimTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
Dedication
This Book
is dedicated to assistants everywhere.
You make it happen for them.
They couldn't do it without you.
Your contribution is everything.
First words
Sample viewing figures for major TV networks in England, September 1985... I didn't ask to be a celebrity.
I didn't ask to be a celebrity.
Quotations
I’ve been in law enforcement for most of my life and I will tell you right now there is no such offense as ‘attempted murder by coincidence in an alternative future by person or persons unknown.’
Poor, dear, sweet Jane! I would so hate to be a first-person character! Always on your guard, always having people reading your thoughts! Here we do what we are told but think what we wish. It is a much happier circumstance, believe me! - Marianne Dashwood
Bloophole: Term used to describe a narrative hole by the author that renders his/her work seemingly impossible. An unguarded bloophole may not cause damage for millions of readings, but then, quite suddenly and catastrophically, the book may unravel itself in a very dramatic fashion.
'Things,' Dad used to say, 'are a whole lot weirder than we can know.'
Attention, please. Passengers for the 11:04 DeepDrop to Sydney will be glad to know that the delay was due to too many excuses being created by the Gravitube’s Excuse Manufacturing Facility. Consequently we are happy to announce that since the excess excuses have now been used, the 11:04 DeepDrop to Sydney is ready for boarding at gate six.
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Thursday Next, literary detective and newlywed, is back to embark on an adventure that begins, quite literally on her own doorstep. It seems that Landen, her husband of four weeks, actually drowned in an accident when he was two years old. Someone, somewhere, sometime, is responsible. The sinister Goliath Corporation wants its operative Jack Schitt out of the poem in which Thursday trapped him, and it will do almost anything to achieve this - but bribing the ChronoGuard? Is that possible? Having barely caught her breath after The Eyre Affair, Thursday must battle corrupt politicians, try to save the world from extinction, and help the Neanderthals to species self-determination. Mastadon migrations, journeys into Just William, a chance meeting with the Flopsy Bunnies, and violent life-and-death struggles in the summer sales are all part of a greater plan. But whose? and why?

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