Saturday, January 8, 2011

Review - First Among Sequels (Thursday Next, Book 5) by Jasper Fforde (4/5 stars)

Thursday Next: First Among SequelsReading level: Adult
Genre: Speculative Fiction
Size: 384 pages
Publisher: Viking Adult
Release Date: July 24, 2007
ISBN-13: 978-0143113560
Stand Alone or Series: 5th book in Thursday Next series
Source: Audio book from
Rating: 4/5 stars

This is the fifth book in the Thursday Next series.  The sixth book, One of Our Thursdays is Missing, is scheduled for release in March of 2011.  This was a great installment in this series.  It started out a bit slower than previous books, but ended up being very engaging.  It does end on a cliffhanger though, which previous books haven't done.  I listened to this on audio book and the audio book was extremely well done.  I have really been enjoying listening to this series even more than reading it.

This book starts 14 years after the events that take place in Something Rotten.  Thursday and Landon have been happily married and have three children; Tuesday, Friday, and Jenny.  Thursday is still doing Spec Ops work but works a carpeting job as cover.  She is also still doing Jurisfiction work but using Spec Ops as a cover for that.  The nation has a huge stupidity surplus because of good government that's been in place too long and someone keeps trying to kill Thursday...again.  On top of all  of this Thursday's son, Friday, has not developed into the time traveling genius he should have and as a result time travel may not have ever been invented causing the unraveling of time as we know it. 

As usual with these books the plot is a complex jumble of seemingly random occurrences that all tie nicely together.  I had been hoping to learn more about Thursday's time traveling son Friday, and was happy to be able to do that in this book.  This book is just as witty, crazy, and well tied together as the previous ones.  And although Thursday is much older, she is just as much fun to be around.  It was nice to see how she juggled having teenagers with all her other craziness.

Thursday's children are all a delight to finally meet.  Tuesday is a mathematical genius and Friday is a lazy guitar planning stereotype.  Her husband Landon is as wonderful as ever.

All the above being said while I really liked this book, there were a couple things that made me like it a bit less than the previous ones.  It starts out kind of slow.  At the beginning I was worried, it seemed like maybe with age Thursday had lost some speed and the plot slowed with her.  This was a temporary problem and as the book continued it picked up.  I also did not like all the lying.  Throughout the book Thursday is constantly lying to Landon and that drove me crazy!  How could they have a workable relationship with all of this lying?  It was all resolved well in the end though.

Speaking of the end...this book ends on a total cliffhanger and very abruptly.  Basically in the last few pages of the book Fforde starts a completely new story line and then stops in the middle of it, so that was a bit of a bother too.

Overall a great installment in the Thursday Next series.  Starts a bit slow and all the lying Thursday does to Landon drove me crazy.  But the writing was creative, crazy, and witty like normal and things picked up in the end.  This book does end on a cliffhanger though, so I am dying to see what happens in One of Our Thursdays is Missing.

This book goes towards the following reading challenges:
- 100+ Reading Challenge
- Audio Book Challenge List
Thursday Next: First Among Sequels

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