- Michele Brown
This readalike is in response to a patron's book-match request. If you would like personalized reading recommendations, fill out the book-match form and a librarian will email suggested titles to you. Available for adults, teens, and kids.
If you liked The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams, outrageous humor may be the draw.
If so, you may want to try one of the books listed below:
The Philosophical Strangler by Eric Flint
Greyboar's professional career as an assassin for hire falls prey to his penchant for philosophy as moral qualms intervene to cause disaster in even the simplest tasks. The latest fantasy by the author of 1632 features an angst-ridden hero, a fast-talking side-kick, fast-paced action, and bawdy humor. Though sometimes the comedy misses the mark,
Flint tells a multilayered tale of camaraderie in the face of misadventure with apologies to the great philosophers. (Library Journal)
The Steampunk Trilogy by Paul Di Filippo
Raunchy, uproarious silliness in the time-honored sf tradition of alternative history. (Library Journal) Features 19th century stories of Queen Victoria, Emily Dickinson, Walt Whitman, and Hottentots in Massachusets.
Bill, the Galatic Hero by Harry Harrison
It was the highest honor to defend the Empire against the dreaded Chingers, an enemy race of seven-foot-tall lizards. But Bill, a Technical Fertilizer Operator from a planet of farmers, wasn't interested in honor-he was only interested in two things: his chosen career, and the shapely curves of Inga-Maria Calyphigia. Then a recruiting robot shanghaied him with knockout drops, and he came to in deep space, aboard the Empire warship Christine Keeler. And from there, things got even worse... From the sweltering fuse room aboard the Keeler, where he loses an arm while blasting a Chinger spaceship, to the Department of Sanitation far below the world-city of Helior, where he finds peace, job security, and unlimited trash...here is Bill, a pure-hearted fool fighting a deluxe cast of robots, androids, and aliens in a never-ending losing battle to preserve his humanity while upholding the glory of the Empire. (catalog summary) (Also, try his Stainless Steel Rat series)
The Eyre Affair by Jasper Fforde
Welcome to a surreal version of Great Britain, circa 1985, where time travel is routine, cloning is a reality (dodos are the resurrected pet of choice), and literature is taken very, very seriously. England is a virtual police state where an aunt can get lost (literally) in a Wordsworth poem, militant Baconians heckle performances of Hamlet, and forging Byronic verse is a punishable offense. All this is business as usual for Thursday Next, renowned Special Operative in literary detection, until someone begins kidnapping charactersfrom works of literature. When Jane Eyre is plucked from the pages of Bronte's novel, Thursday must track down the villain and enter the novel herself to avert a heinous act of literary homicide. (book jacket)
Flying Dutch by Tom Holt
Alive for more than 450 years, doomed to ply the seas endlessly (except for shore leave), Capt. Cornelius Vanderdecker is the Flying Dutchman immortalized in legend and Wagner's opera. In a sophisticated fantasy that is occasionally hilarious but sometimes as creaky as the Dutchman's wood ship, levelheaded London accountant Jane Doland discovers some anomalies in an old ledger and sets out to find beer-swilling Vanderdecker to prevent him from cashing in on a life insurance policy that would bankrupt all of Europe. Meanwhile the captain, cursed with an unpleasant odor, seeks the Ultimate Deodorant from megalomaniac alchemist/inventor Professor Montalban, who invented the computer in 1694. Holt ( The Walled Orchard ) peppers these antics doings with jokes about accountants, history, death, taxes and the general rottenness of existence. His diverting story provides numerous compelling reasons why one would not want to live for centuries. (Publishers Weekly)
Hogfather, a novel of Discworld by Terry Pratchett
In the spirit of the season, try this of the many Discworld novels:
The master of humorous fantasy delivers one of his strongest, most conventional books yet. Discworld's equivalent of Santa Claus, the Hogfather (who flies in a sleigh drawn by four gigantic pigs), has been spirited away by a repulsive assassin, Mr. Teatime, acting on behalf of the Auditors who rule the universe and who would prefer that it exhibited no life. Since faith is essential to life, destroying belief in the Hogfather would be a major blow to humanity. It falls to a marvelously depicted Death and his granddaughter Susan to solve the mystery of the disappeared Hogfather, and meanwhile to fill in for him. (Publishers Weekly)
The Road to Mars by Eric Idle
With Monty Python's Flying Circus, Eric Idle proved he was one of the funniest people in the world. And with The Road to Mars he reaffirms this with a raucously sidesplitting vengence. Muscroft and Ashby are a comedy team on "The Road to Mars," an interplanetary vaudeville circuit of the future. Accompanied by Carlton, a robot incapable of understanding irony but driven to learn the essence of humor, Alex and Lewis bumble their way into an intergalactic terrorist plot. Supported by a delicious cast, including a micropaleontologist narrator (he studies the evolutionary impact of the last ten minutes) and the ultra-diva Brenda Woolley, The Road to Mars is a fabulous trip through Eric Idle's inimitable world, a "universe expanding at the speed of laughter." (catalog summary)
To Say Nothing of the Dog, or How We Found the Bishop's Bird Stump at Last by Connie Willis
Ned Henry is a 21st century historian working on a reconstruction of the hideously ugly Coventry Cathedral, which was destroyed during World War II. Dizzy and confused from a serious case of time lag, he is sent back to the Victorian era to correct a serious mistake made by another historian, who has accidentally brought a 19th century artifact back to the 21st century. This could alter history and destroy the entire space-time continuum. Unfortunately, Ned, half asleep on his feet, doesn't understand the assignment properly and things go hilariously astray. (What Do I Read Next?)