I must admit I'm impressed.
This second edition manages to plunder every version of Douglas Adams' The Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy that I've ever heard of and more, yet remains easy-to-read throughout. It's an absolute breeze, and this morning it became one of only a handful of books in my life that I've managed to read in just the one sitting.
Sure, I mean everyone already knows about the radio series, the books, the TV series and the insipid 2005 movie (nope still not over that). Before reading this book I even knew of the LPs, one or two of the stage versions, and the short written spin-offs for Comic Relief. But Marvin's later unreleased singles? Various school stage plays? The third volume of The Meaning Of Liff published only in Finnish?
Well, it's mightily encouraging to discover that there is yet more work of Adams' out there still waiting for me to share and enjoy it.
Half the fun in these reference works is trying to come up with some omissions, so I'm duty-bound to add here that Peter Jones also recorded a TV Radio Times advert as the Book (launching the second radio series), Marvin put in an appearance on Blue Peter to promote his record, and I thought episode two of the TV show was the only one edited down on repeats (despite shorter timeslots publicised for the others). See how hard I'm working to find something here?
Although this pocket-sixed tome also covers various non-Hitchhiker's material - such as the Dirk Gently books - these are quite welcome to read about too.
Since this was published in 2005, there's unexpectedly been more Hitchhiker's material. The aforementioned movie has been released, the last eight radio episodes have been broadcast, and a sixth novel has been written.
Perhaps the time will soon be upon us for a third edition?