‘The Ultimate Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy’ by Douglas Adams

The “ULTIMATE HITCHHIKER’S GUIDE TO THE GALAXY” “TRILOGY could possibly be one of the most funny books of all time, and is the best sci-fi-comedy ever written. Douglas Adams’s wit is unmatched in this genre. I read this book expecting a lot I had heard numerous references that were supposedly to this book, so I decided to finally read it to find out what all the hype was about.

I’m glad to say I wasn’t disappointed. Quite to the contrary, the book exceeded my expectations. It’s beautifully crafted, and the humor is so whimsical and Pythonesque, that it’s both clever and absurd at the same time. Thanks to Adams’s insight, I too am on a continual search for the reason why 42 is the answer to life, universe and everything.

The plot is quite simple. In this classic story, Arthur Dent, a lovable and easily-confused Earthling gets dragged on the journey of a lifetime as Earth is destroyed by a group of Vogons to make way for a hyperspace by-pass. He is joined by a host of unforgettable characters: the easy-going researcher for the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy Ford Prefect; the hyper Two-Headed, Three-Armed President of the Galaxy Zaphod Beeblebrox; and his girlfriend former-Earth-reporter Trillian; and Marvin, the hopelessly depressed android robot. Together, they are off to explore the galaxy, battle with pesky mice-geniuses, eat dinner at the end of the universe, travel through time, meet the man who designed Norway, redefine “improbability,” patronize and annoy countless alien races, search for a decent cup of tea in an unforgiving universe, and continue the eternal quest to find out why 42 is so darn important.

Adams is a visionary. This is unlike any series I have ever read. Although “Mostly Harmless” was a slightly disappointing conclusion to such an entertaining series, I will always consider the Hitchhiker’s’ “Trilogy” to be among the greats. If you do not own or have never read these books, then this compilation is a necessity for you. I think this book deserves 42 stars (just because of its cryptic number).

Reviewed by G. Aditya Sankar

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