The one lesson that you take away after reading this book is, “Don’t Panic”. Not even if you wake up to find bull dozers surrounding your house ready to break it down or when you are told by your alien friend, whom you took for a regular human all these years, that the planet Earth will get vaporized in two minutes.
Hilarious is the perfect word to describe this book. Another perfect word is outrageous. Actually, the book is full of some of the craziest stuff. Arthur Dent, a regular guy, wakes up on a regular Thursday morning, only to come across the most irregular happenings. The local authorities want to demolish his house to build a bypass. To make matters worse, Dent’s friend Ford Prefect comes up the very moment when Dent is trying to stop the demolition to inform him that, well, appearances can be deceiving. Prefect is an alien, and a hitch hiker, who landed on Earth while on a research trip for his book (The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, what else?!) and got stuck for a good fifteen years. On this Thursday morning, he finds out, through his alien gadgets, that the Vogans (a really ugly alien form) are coming to destroy the world and he has around two minutes to save his friend’s life.
What happens next is a crazy adventure in which Arthur and Ford find themselves imprisoned in an alien ship, thrown into space and then picked up within 30 seconds by another alien ship, The Heart of Gold. On board this ship is Marvin (a depressed robot who absolutely hates life!), Zaphod Beeblebrox, President of the Imperial Galactic Government, and Trillian, a slim, darkish humanoid. And to help Arthur make sense of this new life is The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, “an electronic book. It tells you everything you need to know about anything. That’s its job”.
The one thing Douglas Adams does, besides writing a very humorous book, is to provide us with the answer to life, the universe, everything. It’s 42.
Read more on aliens on the blog here.