I really love Jasper Fforde’s novels-both the Thursday Next ones, as well as the others he’s done. When The Eyre Affair first came out I was blown away by how clever and witty it was, by how much fun he had with language and literature. I think the series is waning a bit, but I was still totally caught up in this latest. And, in fairness, while I definitely felt that midway through the book, at the end there were several surprises and tie-ins that made it all worthwhile and a good payoff for the consistent reader.
I think if I hadn’t read the others, though, I would have found this too confusing to get through. One of the fun things about his alternate time/world and the Bookverse, is that he gets to just make up stuff. Conduits to “story engines” and the like are a bit jargony, but it’s made up jargon so it makes it funny.
It is difficult to even give a synopsis of the book. I’ll just say that Thursdsay Next continues to be a literary detective, jumping in and out of novels, that many years have passed since the last installment, and that her world continues to play with the concept of linear time.
Fforde’s website is a delight to take a look at as well. He really has created a hugely detailed world in his books and the links are very funny and clever.