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The Frood: The Authorised and Very Official History of Douglas Adams & The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy Kindle Edition
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Top Customer Reviews
In it, you'll learn of Douglas' childhood. He was teased for his height, and his big nose, but somewhat appreciated for his writing skill. You'll learn about the books, musicians, and artists whose work he appreciated. You'll learn about his association with John Cleese, Graham Chapman, and Terry Jones of Monty Python. You'll also learn how Adams, like every author, struggled to write the books he did. A notorious procrastinator, Adams often had to literally be sequestered in a room with limited distractions in order to finish his books.
To be honest, you're going to have to read carefully in order to extract the writing and comedy advice in the book. It's interspersed with the story of his life, quotes from interviews, excerpts from his previously-unpublished personal notes, and more.
You'll also find some great stuff here about some of the issues a financially successful famous author has to deal with. Adams lost much of his original fortune to a possibly shady deal with an accountant who handled his finances, and was nearly destitute for a while. He alienated some of his friends by living a lavish lifestyle, inviting people to lunch who wanted his company but could barely afford the meal. You also learn how the success of Hitchhiker became something of a weight around his neck when he wanted to do other things.
There are lots of great insights, anecdotes, writing samples, quotes from and about Adams, and much more in the book.
Although this has been one of the most expensive books I've purchased this year, it's also been one of the ones I've enjoyed the most. Gaining insight into Adams' life, work habits, techniques, and ways of looking at the world has been enjoyable and invaluable.
If I have a criticism at all of this book, and I'm guilty of it in this review, it's that it does tend to be wordy and drag on at times. But given the density of information in it, I can forgive that.
Thank you, Jem Roberts, for writing this. It's been fun and informative for me!
At times, this book is almost excessive in detail -- for instance, the "peanuts to space" bit didn't originate with Hitchhikers Guide, far from it. But for Hitchhikers fans, there's tons of interesting details about Douglas Adams' life, the creation of his famous works and a fair number of outtakes and alternate versions of familiar stories.
I particularly like the backstory of the Dentrassi (although it could have used another polish run to be a bit funnier) and the alternate story of Wowbagger running for his immortal life through Lord's Cricket Grounds.
Even more than Salmon of Doubt, The Frood definitely left me feeling that Douglas died too soon, with a great deal of more good stuff to come.
A bit of a commitment, but a must read for serious fans of Adams or the Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy.
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