LOST IN A GOOD BOOK: A Thursday Next Novel
Det. Thursday Next is back for another round of time traveling and bookish sleuthing after Fforde's successful debut, The Eyre Affair. Like his earlier novel, this one is set in the U.K., in an alternate version of our universe—one in which time travel is possible and the boundaries between life and literature are porous. Thursday works for Special Ops in the Literary Detectives division. She's made an enemy of the corrupt Goliath Corporation, which manufactures absolutely everything, by imprisoning one of its executives, Jack Schitt, in the pages of Poe's The Raven. In return, the corporation eradicates her new husband, Landen. Since no one really dies in this chronologically fluid universe, Landen could be restored—but Goliath won't do it until Thursday brings back Schitt. But rescuing Schitt is easier said than done—Poe's oeuvre is dangerous territory. Thursday enlists the help of Great Expectations' Miss Havisham, who works for the intra-literature police force, Jurisfiction, and the two leap into the pages of Kafka's The Trial, Austen's Sense and Sensibility and Carroll's Alice in Wonderland. Thursday also finds time to authenticate Cardenio, a newly discovered Shakespeare tragedy, and save the world from being engulfed by an oozing pink sludge. Time flies—and leaps and zigzags—while reading this wickedly funny and clever fantasy. Would-be wordsmiths and mystery fans will find the surreal genre-buster irresistible. 12-city author tour. (Mar.)
Forecast:Are there enough English lit lovers to send this book aloft? If the author is as funny in person as he is on the page, his book tour may increase the cult that began with rave reviews for The Eyre Affair.