Scorching Summer Reads From Only $2.99!! Checkout Our Selection Here

Thriftbooks.com - Spend Less. Read More.


Welcome to Thrift Books


Sign up today for Thrift Books' emails and receive exclusive offers, special deals and email-only discounts.


  sign up

Free Shipping on all USA orders
loading...
Adding to Wish List ...
An error has occurred. Please try re-loading the page.
Add to Existing List
Add to New List
Add
The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy
Stock image - cover art may vary
Format: Hardcover
ISBN: 0517542099
ISBN-13: 9780517542095
Publisher: Harmony
Release Date: September, 1989
Length: 224 Pages
Weight: 12 ounces
Dimensions: 7.6 X 5.2 X 0.9 inches
Language: English
   
   

The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy

Rate it!  
(Avg. 5)
Customer Reviews
From
$3.39 Free Shipping
in the USA

List Price: $25.96 Amazon.com
Save $22.57 (87% off)

Join Douglas Adams's hapless hero Arthur Dent as he travels the galaxy with his intrepid pal Ford Prefect, getting into horrible messes and generally wreaking hilarious havoc. Dent is grabbed from Earth moments before a cosmic construction team obliterates the planet to build a freeway. You'll never read funnier science fiction;...
Read more

Buy Now Filter by Shipping Prices
Seller Ships From   Condition Copies Price Shipping Qty. Order
Silver Arch Books MO   Good 2 $3.49 FREE Add to Cart
Free State Books MD Acceptable 1 $3.39 FREE Add to Cart
Ex-Library Copy

55

Customer Reviews

  Be ready to meet the mice ;)

"The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy" is a thoroughly strange book, that at the same time is oddly charming. It starts in a really weird way, with the demolition of Earth (yes, our planet) in order to build a interestellar highway. Only one man survives the end of our world: an Englishman, Arthur Dent. Arthur is saved from sure death by one of his friends, Ford Prefect, that also happened to be an alien doing some research for "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy" (an electronic book that "tells you everything you need to know about anything", and that specially highlights the need for a towel).

Ford got a lift for them with a Vogon spaceship, where they would soon be subjected to a danger worse than death: Vogon poetry. Anyway, as nothing bad last forever, there were soon ejected into space to suffer certain and painful death, only to be rescued again just in time to begin their adventures.

Both Ford and Arthur are interesting characters, but I found Arthur's whining particularly funny. For example, and in his own words to Ford: "you are talking about a positive mental attitude and you haven't even had your planet demolished today. I woke up this morning and thought I'd have a nice relaxed day, do a bit of reading, brush the dog... It is now just after four in the afternoon and I am already being thrown out of an alien spaceship six light-years from the smoking remains of the Earth!".

There are other characters and things you will find interesting, like an eternally depressed robot (life, "loathe it or ignore it, you can't like it"), Zaphod Beeblebrox, and the Babel fish (capable of translating any language in the galaxy if you put them in your ear). There are also some scenes that appear out of the blue, but that are quite enchanting. For instance "Arthur blinked at the screens and felt he was missing something important. Suddenly he realized what it was. - Is there any tea on this spaceship?-he said".

On the whole, I highly recommend this book. Its premise is extremely original, and you will have lots of fun reading it. If you can, buy it know, and be ready to meet the mice * :)

Belen Alcat (* = you will understand that phrase only after reading this book!!!)
 
  Don't forget to bring a towel

No matter how many times I read The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, and I've read it quite a few times already, it never fails to thrill me and induce bouts of almost uncontrollably hearty laughter. With this novel, Douglas Adams gave life to a phenomenon that will long outlive his tragically short life, delighting millions of readers for untold years to come. I'm not sure if science fiction had ever seen anything like this before 1979. This is science fiction made to laugh at itself while honoring its rich tradition, but it is much more than that. Adams' peculiarly dead-on humor also draws deeply from the well of sociology, philosophy, and of course science. Whenever Adams encountered a sacred cow of any sort, he milked it dry before moving on. Beneath the surface of utter hilarity, Adams actually used his sarcasm and wit to make some rather poignant statements about this silly thing called life and the manner in which we are going about living it. This is one reason the book is so well-suited for multiple readings-a high level of enjoyment is guaranteed each time around, and there are always new insights to be gained from Adams' underlying, oftentimes subtle, ideas and approach.

Arthur Dent is your normal human being, and so he naturally is more concerned about his house being knocked down than facing the fact that the world is about to end. His friend Ford Prefect, he comes to learn, is actually a researcher from a planet somewhere in the vicinity of Betelgeuse, but before he can even begin to comprehend this fact, he finds himself zipped up into the confines of the Vogon space cruiser that has just destroyed the planet Earth. Things become even trickier for him when he discovers the great usefulness of sticking a Babel fish into his ear and then meets the singular President of the Galaxy Zaphod Beeblebrox and his shipmate Trillian, both of whom Arthur actually met months before at a party. Such impossible coincidences are explained by the fact that Beeblebrox's ship is powered by the new Infinite Improbability Drive. Dent grows more and more confused during his travels on board the Heart of Gold, and the story eventually culminates with an amazing visit to an astronomically improbable world.

Much of the humor here is impossible to describe; this novel must be read to be appreciated. It seems like every single line holds a joke of some kind within it. The characters are also terrific: the unfortunate Arthur Dent, who basically has no idea what is going on; Ford Prefect, Arthur's remarkable friend from Betelgeuse; Zaphod Beeblebrox, with his two heads, three arms, and cavalier attitude; Trillian the lovely Earth girl who basically flies the Heart of Gold; Slartibartfast the planet builder and fjord-make extraordinaire; and my favorite character of all, Marvin the eternally depressed robot. Life-"loathe it or ignore it, you can't like it" is the Paranoid Android's philosophy. One brilliant thing that Adams does is to step away from the action every so often to present interesting facts about the universe as recorded in the Hitchhiker's Guide; here we learn about Vogon poetry, the Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal, Trans Galactic Gargle Blasters, and other fascinating tidbits about life in the crazy universe Adams created. He even gives the reader the ultimate answer to the question of Life, the Universe, and Everything in these pages.

This novel is just an amazingly hilarious read that will leave you yearning for more; to our great fortune, Adams indeed left us more in the form of four subsequent books in the Hitchhiker's "trilogy." If you don't like science fiction, it doesn't matter; read this book just for the laughs. The most amazing thing about Adams' humor is the fact that everyone seems to "get" it. Adams broke all the rules in writing a novel quite unlike any that had come before it, and he succeeded in spades. This may well be the funniest novel ever written.

 
  Guide to The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy

In The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, Douglas Adams uses humor and sarcasm against a backdrop of science fiction to create a comic masterpiece. The main character in the book is Arthur Dent. He is miraculously rescued from Earth just moments before it is destroyed to make way for an interstellar bypass. His rescuer is Ford Prefect, a researcher for The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy who has been stranded on Earth for the past fifteen years. Unfortunately, the only ship available to escape on belongs to the Vogons who throw out the two hitchhikers when they discover them on the ship only after reciting horrible poetry to them. This should have been the end of these two adventurers, but by an amazingly improbable event, they are rescued by the starship Heart of Gold. This event was caused by the revolutionary propulsion system on the ship called the Infinite Improbability Drive, which makes the improbable probable. The occupants of the ship are Zaphod Beeblebrox, President of the Imperial Galactic Government who had recently stolen the Heart of Gold, Trillian, a woman originally from Earth and Zaphod's companion, and Marvin, an extremely intelligent and depressed robot. The party travels to the long lost planet of Magrathea where planets were once manufactured for the extremely wealthy. Zaphod believes that inside they will find countless riches, but are surprised to discover that it is still inhabited. Inside, Arthur discoveries many amazing things, such as the answer to life, the universe, and everything is forty-two, and the planet earth was manufactured as a computer to discover what the actual question to the answer is. The characters in the book are well developed. Arthur is the clueless one who is struggling to understand the events which have happened to him. Ford is the accomplished hitchhiker who answers Arthur's questions with responses which are so insane that they more often than not cause more confusion. Zaphod is a two-headed creature in search of adventure and Trillian is an intelligent and capable woman from earth. Through these characters, we learn to take ourselves a little less seriously. Although this book is full of humor, it also contains other aspects. It satirizes such subjects as capitalism, government, large corporations, organized religion, and militarism. The writing is full of irony and biting sarcasm as well. Adams' atheistic worldview is also displayed through his writing. I believe that Douglas Adams managed to write an excellent book which contains many strengths with very few weaknesses. This book is extremely funny and can be enjoyed as long as the reader is not expecting a serious sci-fi epic. The only possible weakness in the book is that the plot can become confusing at times. This, however, helps the reader relate to what Arthur is experiencing and eventually everything becomes clear if the reader pays attention. Overall, this is a fantastic book which is highly entertaining while still making some intelligent comments on life, the universe, and everything.
 
  So Long Douglas, and thanks for all the laughs.

With the passing of Douglas Adams on Friday 5/11/2001, I picked up this book after quite a number of years and gave it a good ol' read....and you know what... this novel will forever be poignant, witty and downright entertaining. I laughed all over again. I mean, I really laughed. I'm going to miss Douglas.

Douglas wasn't just at the forefront of comedy-sci-fi....he basically created the genre. My only regret, along with quite a number of fans, is that we shall never again relish in the adventures of Arthur Dent and the gang. No more Vogon poetry. No more Pan Galactic Gargleblasters. No more Babel fish. No more tongue-twisting names. Therein lies the real shame.

New readers to Douglas Adams, take heart! Each of the novels that make up this series are all fantastic tales! If you own a copy of Hitchhiker's, you hold in your hands a classic! Cherish it always and read it as it was intended.... as a truly light-hearted romp through the cosmos.

Take a look at some of the reviews listed here. Over four hundred people can't be wrong. The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy is without a doubt one of the greatest books of all time by a quirky and innovative author. (We'll just have to forgive him for wearing a digital watch.)

Thank-you Douglas for the fun and adventures. You were one of a kind. May we one day meet at the Restaurant at the End of the Universe. The first round's one me. I'll bring the towel.

A classic. A gem. You must own this novel.

 
  Review of the audio versions only

Since there are many reviews of the book itself, I thought someone should review the audio versions independently. There are two versions of this title in audio format, the dramatized edition, which is abridged, and the version read by the author, which is unabridged; I have both! I you are a fan of the dramatized versions of books please be sure before you buy which version you are getting. I enjoyed both the dramatized version and the version read by Douglas Adams himself as each has its own pros and cons.

The Dramatized version, done by the BBC (or at least the version that I have is), is very well done, as are all of the BBC dramatizations. The cast does a fantastic job as does the special effects team on the sounds. Be aware that dramatized versions are typically abridged, which is not a big problem generaly but some people don't care for it. This version was originally released as a multiple part radio program so if you are familiar with that format you have a good idea of this version. The only drawbacks are the it is in an outmoded format (cassette) and that it is abridged.

The unabridged spoken version is read by the author, Douglas Adams, and is very good. This is a special treat since he has passed on. I enjoy the ability to hear the author's concept of how the story should read in his own voice. This version has a permanent home on my iPod so that anytime I need a little boost, I can queue it up. It is easy to listen to and quite enjoyable but if you are used to the dramatized versions of audio books you may find that it takes 5 or 10 minutes to get used to the single voice. It is worth it though!

I would recommend either audio version to anyone that commutes or has at least thirty minutes of free time at a stretch. Both versions are well done and are enjoyable to listen to. For anyone who has not experienced audio books before, I would recommend a good tile like this to start off with.