By Jasper Fforde
Hodder & Stoughton 2004
Jasper Fforde - Wikipedia
Well now, let me tell you, Jasper Fforde is back to his usual exciting writing. Remember a few days ago I reviewed The Well of Lost Plots, (Book Three) and said that I found it somewhat boring? Mostly because it was set in the world of fiction and nothing interesting seemed to happen there.
Now that Thursday Next has returned to the "real" world, Book Four is just as exciting as Book Two was. Thursday now has a 2 year old son named Friday. Her husband Landen is still eradicated, so Thursday and Friday must move back into her mothers home in Swindon. Thursday has also brought a visitor with her from the Book World - Hamlet, Prince of Denmark. Thursday tries to settle back into her old job as a SpecOps Literary Detective. She has been gone for 2.5 years and everyone assumes she has been in prison. The year is now 1988.
When Thursday returns to the "real world" she finds some minor changes. One is a new Politician in the English Parliament named Yorick Kaine, who is intent on becoming a dictator. He is currently fomenting a war against Denmark, over the Danes invasion of England some 1100 years before (around 800AD). And he has also passed a law stating that anything written by a Danish author, must be burned.
Also a 13th century Saint wrote that the old President of England would die 2 days after the Swindon hoops (croquet) team lost the Superhoops match in 1988. Thursday's dad (the rogue Chronoguard) tells Thursday that this match is of vital importance because with the old president dead, that will leave Yorick Kaine in a position to become a dictator, and start the last and final war. The war that annihilates the human race.
So Thursday must stop Danish books being burned, help the Swindon hoops team to win, find out what book Yorick Kaine comes from, get her husband un-eradicated and keep the current President alive, and keep Hamlet from getting into trouble. That's all in a weeks work for Thursday. Oh yes, and she must also avoid several assassination attempts. The Goliath Corporation are very keen to eradicate her as well.
I found this book to be just as good as Book two. Again like all the books in this series, there are over-the-top events that can never happen in our world, but this is fiction. Anything can happen in a novel. And as long as you're having fun when you're reading, well then, the book has done its job.
The fifth book in the series was published just last year (2007), and it is called First in a Sequel. There is talk of a sixth book called One of our Thursdays is Missing, due out in 2009.