The Eyre Affair
Pirouetting on the boundaries between sci-fi, the crime thriller and intertextual whimsy, Jasper Fforde's outrageous The Eyre Affairputs you on the wrong footing even on its dedication page, which proudly announces that the book conforms to Crimean War economy standard. Fforde's heroine,... show more
Pirouetting on the boundaries between sci-fi, the crime thriller and intertextual whimsy, Jasper Fforde's outrageous The Eyre Affairputs you on the wrong footing even on its dedication page, which proudly announces that the book conforms to Crimean War economy standard. Fforde's heroine, Thursday Next, lives in a world where time and reality are endlessly mutable--someone has ensured that the Crimean War never ended for example--a world policed by men like her disgraced father, whose name has been edited out of existence. She herself polices text--against men like the Moriarty-like Acheron Styx, whose current scam is to hold the minor characters of Dickens' novels to ransom, entering the manuscript and abducting them for execution and extinction one by one. When that caper goes sour, Styx moves on to the nation's most beloved novel--an oddly truncated version of Jane Eyre--and kidnaps its heroine. The phlegmatic and resourceful Thursday pursues Acheron across the border into a Leninist Wales and further to Mr Rochester's Thornfield Hall, where both books find their climax on the roof amid flames. Fforde is endlessly inventive: his heroine's utter unconcern about the strangeness of the world she inhabits keeps the reader perpetually double-taking as minor certainties of history, literature and cuisine go soggy in the corner of our eye. The audacity of the premise and its working out provides sudden leaps of understanding, many of them accompanied by wild fits of the giggles. This is a peculiarly promising first novel. --Roz Kaveney
Publish date: July 19th 2001
Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton
Pages no: 400
Edition language: English
Series: Thursday Next (#1)
I first heard about this book when I read Jane Eyre about 10 years ago and only got around to reading it now. Many people seem to enjoy it including some of my friends, but I found it to be a little less than engaging and not much of a page-turner. Ironic, since there's a minor character actually na...
This book throws right in so it took me a minute to get my bearings. It's in an alternate reality. Books are a huge deal. Parts can come to life. Throw in some time travel and comedy. There are murders and robberies. There are government agents trying to bring down criminals disrupting lives a...
That was a wild, wild romp. I have been meaning to dive into the Thursday Next series for years, and finally decided to take the plunge after MBD's review of the most recent installment in the series. I've read all of Fforde's Chronicles of Kazam, so I am familiar with his unique style, but even s...
Charmingly overplotted, this book is the definition of a fun romp. A good friend has been bugging me for ages now to start this series because she adores it, and I'm glad I gave this one a try. I loved the sheer force of Thursday Next's personality, the way she just gets things done, the more tha...
What I love about books is the mystery and the suspense. I love meeting characters who are more complicated and have more depth than some people I know in real life. And I LOVE good writing. The Eyre Affair has it all. Jasper Fforde is a genius, mixing the elements of a contemporary fiction/myst...