Something Rotten by Jasper Fforde: bonkers but brilliant

Updated: Apr 30, 2021

Where else would you find a female protagonist who can jump into fiction, excel as a SpecOps literary detective and is conversant with Neanderthal living, cloning and time travel?

Jasper Fforde’s Something Rotten is crammed with comical characters, witty literary allusions and fast paced eccentric action. He creates a completely believable, superbly bonkers world that’s a delight to immerse yourself in.

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Something Rotten: bonkers but brilliant

The fabulous yet down-to-earth Thursday Next is my hero. At last, a convincing female character (which is saying something in that wacky world) who's a book lover no less.

In between trying to rescue Shakespeare’s Hamlet (the play and the character), regain her time-eradicated husband and find a way to win the croquet SuperHoop to save the world, Thursday Next has to find reliable child-care.

We all know which of those is the most challenging. If I’d had access to a Mrs Bradshaw to look after my children, I’d certainly have jumped at the opportunity.

Remarkably, Thursday also has a stalker and would-be assassin in tow during her Danish book-saving adventures.

When I finish reading Something Rotten, I really miss the gentle and perceptive Neanderthals, feel I would love a pet dodo, but am glad my flowerbeds are safe from trampling mammoth herds.

All in all, Jasper Fforde’s Something Rotten is a cracking read. It’s imaginative, clever, and thoroughly entertaining, I would highly recommend it.

Happy reading!

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