The Long Dark Tea-Time of the Soul by Douglas Adams
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
I had to re-read this because I'm insane but I'm happy to be so because I still loved it.
Total truth time: it's not quite as funny or as sharp in the individual zinger lines as Dirk Gently's Holistic Detective Agency, but the long-running story gags are fantastically wicked and cruel and even profoundly sad.
It's also more of an adventure tale for Dirk later on, but primarily, it's all a mystery. Sometimes, the plot is as much of a mystery, too, but I don't care. :) After the rising of new gods in Asgard and the fate of soooo many pebbles, and the dark, dark fate of a Coke machine, who really cares? The novel is brilliant and creative and so darkly funny. It's enough to make me despair for modern literature, and this came out in '88!
Here's another awesome tidbit. It's the novel that I first thought of when I first read American Gods. All the greatness of seeing Odin on the page or Thor blowing up an airport is all here and the characterizations are brilliant.
Can I even say that it's even more brilliant after knowing the legends much better? You bet I can! I read this when I was 14 years old the first time and let's be frank... I didn't know crap. I learned most of what I knew about Thor from this book and the fact that there was some silly Marvel comic that I wasn't even tempted to read was about it. And now? Soooooo Nice! :) Even the little In-Jokes about the gods are all here. It's a bit more erudite than I expected it to be. :)
But it's also so funny! Do I love eagles even more now? You bet! Am I even more annoyed with Yuppies? You bet! Do I want to run out and get some 300 count sheets and snuggle in them, perhaps get an eyepatch and avoid big strapping men with hammers? You bet!
Poor Dirk. I have to admit that his Horoscope is always dead-on. :)
My one complaint is that there wasn't a whole series made out of this. I still wonder just how amazingly cool it could have been to have a full bookcase full of these and point to it as the most amazing thing EVAH.
Some authors just overflow with goodness. Douglas Adams was one of them. *sigh*
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