Mostly Harmless (Hitchhiker's Guide Series #5)

Mostly Harmless (Hitchhiker's Guide Series #5)

4.3 91
by Douglas Adams
     
 

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It’s easy to get disheartened when your planet has been blown up, the woman you love has vanished due to a misunderstanding about space/time, the spaceship you are on crashes on a remote and Bob-fearing planet, and all you have to fall back on are a few simple sandwich-making skills. However, instead of being disheartened, Arthur Dent makes the terrible mistake…  See more details below

Overview

It’s easy to get disheartened when your planet has been blown up, the woman you love has vanished due to a misunderstanding about space/time, the spaceship you are on crashes on a remote and Bob-fearing planet, and all you have to fall back on are a few simple sandwich-making skills. However, instead of being disheartened, Arthur Dent makes the terrible mistake of starting to enjoy life a bit–and immediately all hell breaks loose.

Hell takes a number of forms: there’s the standard Ford Prefect version, in the shape of an all-new edition of The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, and a totally unexpected manifestation in the form of a teenage girl who startles Arthur Dent by being his daughter when he didn’t even know he had one.

Can Arthur save the Earth from total multidimensional obliteration? Can he save the Guide from a hostile alien takeover? Can he save his daughter, Random, from herself? Of course not. He never works out exactly what is going on. Will you?


From the Trade Paperback edition.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Ford Prefect, of the planet Betelgeuse, and Earthman Arthur Dent began their whimsical odyssey in The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. In Adams' latest book, Ford relies on serendipity and his own quick wits to protect a powerful new edition of the Hitchhiker's Guide from the loathsome, sluglike Vogons. Ford's pal, Arthur, misses his planet and his old flame, Tricia McMillan. The rootless traveler from Earth finds his metier, however, on Lamuella, a world whose people subsist on Perfectly Normal Beast. Adams sets a rapid pace that becomes even more hectic when Arthur is unexpectedly joined by Tricia; her peevish teenage daughter; Ford Prefect; and the travel guide to the stars. The book once looked like a hand-held computer; now it takes the shape of a mechanical talking bird. Using new techniques, this floating device can whisk users through space and time. Thus the scene shifts back to Earth, where the past, present and future braid together. Adams may depend too much on the cliffhanger form. But his ingenious wit still captivates, and his characters frolic through the galaxy with infectious joy. (Oct.)
Donna Seaman
Subtitled: "The Fifth Book in the Increasingly Inaccurately Named Hitchhiker's Trilogy," the latest installment in the intergalactic adventures of Arthur Dent and Ford Prefect is up to Adams' usual high standards of ironic inventiveness. The action whips back and forth between parallel universes, one in which the Earth still exists, and one in which the Vogons have dispassionately obliterated it. On Earth, Tricia, a TV anchorwoman (an astrophysicist until she met an attractive, two-headed alien at a party), is working on a story about the implications of the discovery of a tenth planet, called Rupert, for astrology. Meanwhile, Ford has returned to the "Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy" headquarters to learn that the once hip little publishing company has been taken over by the monolithic and secretive InfiniDim Enterprises. While he reconnoiters forbidden corporate territory accompanied by a giddy, rewired security robot, Arthur is mooning around the universe, selling his sperm and DNA, trying to find a planet he can call find home. He is shocked to find out that he has a daughter, named Random, who he is expected to take care of while her reporter mother goes off to cover a war. Eventually, the space-time continuum warps in such a way as to bring everyone together for a cataclysmic finale. Good, metaphysical fun from one of its primary practitioners.
From the Publisher
“Hitchhiker fans rejoice! . . . [Here’s] more of the same zany nonsensical mayhem.”—New York Times Book Review

“It is Mr. Adams’s genius to hurl readers into a plot that seems to go everywhere and nowhere, then suddenly drop the pieces into place, click, click, click, like tumblers in a lock. . . . Delightful.”—Baltimore Sun

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780307422224
Publisher:
Random House Publishing Group
Publication date:
09/23/2009
Series:
Hitchhiker's Guide Series , #5
Sold by:
Random House
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
240
Sales rank:
120,942
File size:
2 MB

Meet the Author

Douglas Adams was born in 1952 and educated at Cambridge. He was the author of five books in the Hitchhiker’s Trilogy, including The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy; The Restaurant at the End of the Universe; Life, the Universe and Everything; So Long, and Thanks for All the Fish; and Mostly Harmless. His other works include Dirk Gently’s Holistic Detective Agency; The Long Dark Tea-Time of the Soul; The Meaning of Liff and The Deeper Meaning of Liff (with John Lloyd); and Last Chance to See (with Mark Carwardine). His last book was the bestselling collection, The Salmon of Doubt, published posthumously in May 2002.
You can find more about Douglas Adam's life and works at douglasadams.com.


From the Trade Paperback edition.

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Mostly Harmless (Hitchhiker's Guide Series #5) 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 92 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book is an awesome climax to the series. I would recommend this book to anyone who loves science fiction or comedy. Douglass Adams should know how much I love this book.
1000_Character_Reviews More than 1 year ago
"Mostly Harmless" are the words that now replace all of the writing and research that Ford Prefect has created for the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy...and he wants to know why. The Vogons are back...still trying to destroy earth, but in a different way than usual. We also find Arthur Dent jumping through alternate universes trying to find his version of his beloved Earth...and learning that he has a moody teenage daughter spawned from his need to get traveling money. The fifth and final (at least from Douglas Adams) entry into the Hitchhiker "Trilogy" is probably the most hilarious and crazy entry in the series. I found myself laughing more at this book than the other ones. The sarcastic and just plain weird subplots (was Elvis kidnapped by aliens? how many “Earths” are there in the mish-mash?) and side-stories are simply hilarious. A great diversion, though I found the ending to be less than satisfying – very Sopranos-like.
Guest More than 1 year ago
The book ¿Mostly Harmless¿ by Douglas Adams is the last book in the Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy series. This book sums up all of ¿the crew¿s¿ experiences together and finally gives it an ending that I would say suits the book. It all starts out when Trillian gets lost in a time warp and Arthur Dent crashes his ship on a Bob fearing planet. Yes I know it sounds strange that a whole planet fears Bob¿s but that¿s just the humor in the book. The whole book makes as much sense as that first part that I told you about so its not even worth it trying to make sense of everything. Believe me, I¿ve tried this and after using up a whole summer on it I gave up. This overall is a very funny and interesting book and really gets you thinking about the world around you.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I think Mostly Harmless is the best book in the Hitchhiker's series (except maybe the first). Of course it is hilarious, like all the others, but this book is a little deeper and a little darker. It conveys raw emotion and philosophical ideas, more so than the previous books, yet still maintains the same zaniness we love. Random is one of my favorite characters in the series. There is a new robot character in this book that is hilarious - he is the antithesis of Marvin (he is chronically happy rather than depressed - hilarious). I thought the ending was fitting. It does leave you with unanswered questions, but isn't that what it's all about?
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book is a definite YES. It IS AS GOOD as the rest of the series. Leaving off on SOATFATF would be BAD. Adams is not disappointed or bored. NO to negative reviews.
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If you can't follow the multiuniversal travel in the series, don't read it. One of the characters is split between two occurences in timelines, but you can tell them apart by her different names, Tricia and Trillian. A sad/unexcpected ending, but it goes along with the "Life just happens" theme. You'll never know why it does, only 42. You might as well enjoy the ride, and remember where your towel's at.
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