Thursday Next is a veteran of the long-running Crimea war and is a Special Ops member of LiteraTec. Members of this part of the government help investigate crimes of a literary nature. Next is brought in to investigate the missing original book of Dicken's Chuzzlewit. The area holding the book had high security, no cameras saw the crime happen, and the glass surrounding the book hadn't been disturbed. Next knows this is from the second most dangerous person in the world, Acheron Hades. Hades has special abilities, never being seen on cameras, changing the way he looks, etc. LiteraTec suspects that Hades is trying to take characters out of books or jump in to them themselves.
What were to happen if a character were to be killed off from a book in the outside world? Would a new ending be created? Would the book stop? Hades soon gets his hands on the original Jane Eyre novel and that's when all hell breaks loose.
This was a fun and incredibly clever book. At times I felt like Fforde was trying to accomplish too much in one book, what with a time travelling dad, trying to determine if Shakespeare was the legitimate author of all his plays, the Crimean war, and a love story. Somehow it all worked but I think the book could have been even better if there was a little less packed in to this book.
This was enjoyable, I'm going to move on to the next book right away!
First Line: "My father had a face that could stop a clock."