Rating: 3.5 stars
For whatever reason, when I was a teenager, the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy books were always books that I had on my “to read” list but it’s only now that I’ve actually gotten around to reading them. There must have been a lot of talk amongst my friends about them. 25+ years later, I’m finding these pretty enjoyable light reading.
The Restaurant at the End of the Universe takes up immediately after the end of Hitchhiker’s Guide and involves the same main characters. They’re on a galactic road trip, essentially caught up in the whirlwind of Zaphod’s drama wherein he is trying to figure out a personal mystery that lead to him stealing a spacecraft in the first book. Along the way, you get to know a very little more about the characters, see some pretty interesting planets, and almost get to watch the end of the universe.
Honestly, the most impactful thing about this book is all of the cultural references that I had seen previously, but never knew the origin. Much of those are found in other science fiction (movies, etc) but also randomly in other places. There is some always-fun British humor, of course. Dry wit and sarcasm galore.
Overall, the story didn’t go much of anywhere. The character development is pretty glacially slow. Towards the end there was some ironic time travel (for some reason, I find that I loathe time travel stories and elements… not sure why). Thankfully, it was a pretty short book and a “quick” read. I have all 5 books in a Kindle collection, but this one made me wonder if I’ll get through them. Maybe I’ll save it for when I’m needing some sarcastic dry wit or British humor. I’m still glad I’ve read the book, though.