24.10.13

THE EYRE AFFAIR, by Jasper Fforde

1/series. Okay, I've got a new off-the-wall author hero: Jasper Fforde. I picked this up at the library, expecting a Jane Austen-oriented cozy of some sort, and was plunged almost instantly into a time-warped Britain in 1985, where the Crimean War is entering its 185th year, a single gigantic corporation runs the country, and cloned dodos are everyday pets. Thursday Next, our heroine - and a great one - has a 1.2 version dodo. Thursday's father is a fugitive from the time police and
pops in and out of reality to visit his daughter. The evil villain really is evil (only real evil can reach through glass, right?) and chases through multitudes of time warps. Thursday's uncle Mycroft, an inventor of potentially priceless gadgets, is pursued by evil in two forms: the villain Acheron Hades and the capitalist Jack Schitt. And what about the romance between poet William Wordsworth and Mycroft's wife Polly, who gets stuck in the daffodil field? Rarely do I catch myself laughing out loud, but Fforde did it, again and again. Great writing, compelling characters, good dialogue, fabulous and original plot...and it's his first published book! With wacky humor such as you'll find in this debut novel, it's no wonder Fforde won the Wodehouse award. This is a solid 5 for me.