Welcome to Week 2 of the Online Book Club discussion of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy.
How was your reading experience this week? I have to be honest--this is not the type of book that I would pick up and read on my own. I couldn't tell you the last time I read a science fiction book. However, I did enjoy the section this week. It was creative, to say the least.
Did you know that the story was originally presented as a radio drama? I was shocked when I read that. I think it would be really neat to hear it presented in that way. I think it's just the type of book that's meant to be read out loud. If you'd like to get a taste of what the radio performance is like, check out a clip below of a live taping of the radio drama. It seems to follow the book mostly, but I think some of the action from the radio drama finds its way into the second book in the series as well.
The book starts pretty normally. We have a man who is upset because his house is going to be torn down. Then, the story suddenly shifts, and we realize that Earth is about to be destroyed, and Arthur's struggling actor friend, Ford, is actually a galactic traveler who is working on adding entries to a book called The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. Ford whisks Arthur off of Earth, right before it's destroyed, and that's when the action really starts. What did you think of that beginning? Were you excited to keep reading to figure out what was going to happen to Arthur?
The first place Ford and Arthur visit is a Vogon ship. The Vogon's don't like hitchhikers, but there are cooks on the ship that let Arthur and Ford on. I think the thing that creeped me out the most when Arthur and Ford were on the Vogon ship was the fact that Arthur had to put a fish in his ear in order to understand the Vogons. That was absolutely disgusting! I didn't like the description of the fish insertion in the ear, I didn't like the idea of a fish in an ear--the whole thing was too gross for me! Were you affected by that section? The Vogons quickly decide to get rid of Arthur and Ford, and after reading them some weird poetry, they shoot them into space.
But, not all hope is lost for Ford and Arthur. They, improbably, are picked up right before they would die in space. They're rescued by the Starship Heart of Gold, a ship that can cross great distances without hyperspace. We know that Zaphod Beeblebrox stole the Heart of Gold, but we don't really know anything other than that. Zaphod is an interesting guy. He's the president of the Galaxy, but he's a thief? And, he has an extra arm and two heads? What do you think is going on with him? At the end of this section, Arthur and Ford are about to meet Zaphod, and Ford is acting a little bit weird. Do you think Zaphod will let them stay on the ship? What do you think will happen next?
Are you enjoying the story? Are you excited to keep reading, so you can find out more about Zaphod, Arthur, and Ford? I hope you're excited to come back next week as we discuss the next 12 chapters! Remember, our comment section is down, so if you'd like to leave a comment about the book, head to our Facebook page. I can't wait to hear your thoughts about this week's section!