‘The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy’

ADAMS, Douglas. The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. 1979.

‘People of Earth, [p]lans for development of the outlying regions of the galaxy require the building of a hyperspatial express route through your star system, and regrettably your planet is schedules for demolition.’

London: Pan Books, 1983. Why bother spelling it on the cover as it appears in the book?

London: Pan Books, 1983. Why bother spelling it on the cover as it appears in the book?

This is the story of Arthur Dent, who—by surprise—sets off for the stars guided by a friend who appears to be an alien and the most useful book in that situation, The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy.

Douglas Adams explores new worlds and gives a new meaning to life itself in a crafty and witty way. However, very much like Foundation by Isaac Asimov, the book won’t provide a closed end—or perhaps not even an end at all. It’s one of those texts you read to enjoy the author’s style rather than the plot, which is quite simple.

At some points you’d believe Adams decided to go crazy and experiment with hilariously random bits and see where the narration would go from there. The fun and weirdness are worth it—after all, he was the man behind the fourth Doctor charisma.

This novel was, in fact, based on the BBC radio series by the same title and also by Douglas Adams first broadcasted in 1978. As a translator I couldn’t help but notice that even the BBC displays an inconsistent spelling of Hitch Hiker’s, which can be seen as Hitchhiker’s most times, but also Hitch Hicker’s, Hitch-Hiker’s or Hitch Hikers. Therefore I’m using the spelling printed on my edition of the book—not on the cover, though.

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