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Young Zaphod Plays It Safe (Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, #0.5)
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Young Zaphod Plays It Safe

(Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy 0.5)

3.68  ·  Rating details ·  26,670 ratings  ·  151 reviews
Young Zaphod Plays it Safe is a novella by Douglas Adams set in his The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy universe. It doesn't appear as a standalone work, but is included with several collections. The story is a prequel to the events in The Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy and has the young Zaphod Beeblebrox working as a salvage ship operator. He guides some bureaucrats to ...more
Paperback, 11 pages
Published March 3rd 2012 by Book On Demand Ltd. (first published October 1986)
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Ayla In the ultimate hitchhikers guide to the galaxy, . I borrowed it through overdrive using my library card number.

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3.68  · 
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 ·  26,670 ratings  ·  151 reviews

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Oct 05, 2012 rated it liked it
I first read this story in the Ultimate Hitchhiker omnibus, about twenty years ago. Though it was enjoyable to read a new Zaphod story, if brief, the denouement left me totally and completely baffled. Only today do I find that it's because the final sentence was edited, upon republication from the original:

(view spoiler)
Dang Ole' Dan Can Dangle
Apr 11, 2013 rated it it was ok
Shelves: fiction
This short story is a prequel to the first Hitchhiker's novel and is a story about Zaphod Beeblebrox, the man with the odd, or rather even, number of heads.

It's a very brief story and nothing much of interest happens at all. It is a bit intriguing that since this is a prequel about Zaphod it means that it takes place before he blocked off sections of his mind, so I suppose it's nice to see what he was like before he became what we know him to be in the main series. Plus there's some nice refere
First off there is some confusion around this story. Goodreads seems to show it as being a 146 page novella, but the version I read was little more than a short story. I double checked with my B&N Omnibus edition and it's also a short story there. Online, it seems many other people had discoverd the same thing. It looks like the 146 page count is for some sort of collected shorts and not a singular work. Unless of course it's 146 pages in some higher dimension and we only see a small portion ...more
Feb 19, 2019 rated it did not like it
3.5/5 Rating Orignialy posted at MyLifeMyBooksMyEscape as part of the Time Traveler's Almanac group read.
Follow along with #TimeTravelThursday

One hundred percent perfectly safe!

Might as well start off this review by saying, embarrassingly, that I have never read The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy. Sorry, folks! I do own the ultimate edition though, and saw the movie! (Which I thought was hilarious!) So anyways, this an extract from a novella, I think? The narrator's voice is hilarious (which
Scarlet Cameo
Oct 11, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: rc-16
This doesn't give anything to the story, but is funny and sometimes kind of gross and i like that :D
Aug 26, 2012 rated it it was amazing
The final book (book #5) or should I say the prelude to The Hitchhikers Guide To The Galaxy....where the end is just the beginning. ^_^
Tiffany Russ
Feb 14, 2014 rated it it was amazing
An enjoyable short story. I have no idea what it had to do with anything, but it was enjoyable to read nonetheless.
Tommy Verhaegen
Feb 23, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: sci-fi, ebook_en, humor
It's comic and it's hitchhikers' guide to the galaxy. And it contains a young Zaphod. So it is weird, funny, dangerous and nonsense. But perfectly safe. And dangerous.
Nice reading mostly, except for the vomiting part, for which the author apoligizes.
Nice reading for the fans, frustrating it does not seem to have a goal, or a real ending at that.
Mr Shahabi
Jan 15, 2019 rated it liked it
Well 11 pages is hardly considered a book, it's rather an answer to the question once you finish book 4 you ask yourself "OH I wonder where Zaphod is?" and voila, Adam's slaps this very short book as an answer before you dwell into the final adventure

Drink your tea, the party is Almost over
Chris Greensmith
Jun 27, 2018 rated it it was ok
"You’re one hundred percent positive that the ship which is crashed on the bottom of this ocean is the ship which you said you were one hundred percent positive could one hundred percent positively never crash?"
A good short story about a character not really seen following the first book...2 🌟
Sep 30, 2017 rated it liked it
This was just ok. I've always really liked Zaphod's character, and so it was interesting to have a little prequel about him. The bit about mining the past was awesome, but the rest was nothing special. Reading some other reviews it makes it clear that this short story was written just for Douglas Adams to make a political statement. I read it because it was included in my Ultimate Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, and it's very short, but otherwise it doesn't add anything to the series.
Jul 28, 2017 rated it it was amazing
The story is fun and mild unless you open its Wikipedia article and see it ended differently in the original text. After that, the story is perfectly perfect because it perfectly fits Adams' humorously intelligent style.
Nov 05, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: soft
looks like i've read this before from the ultimate hitchhiker's guide
Jun 12, 2017 rated it liked it
Little more than a collection of paradoxes, but there were some parts of it that I liked. Like this bit: "The two officials waited calmly. They coughed slightly to help pass the time."
Keith Moser
May 30, 2017 rated it did not like it
Shelves: fiction, short-story
Amazing how the removal of a few little words can ruin a 10-page story.

I read Young Zaphod Plays it Safe for the second time through my reread of The Ultimate Hitchhiker's Guide but I only now understand what it's about thanks to the internet.

As edited into the five-book "trilogy" I own, the story begins with Zaphod and two agents from the Safety and Civil Reassurance Administration exploring the depths of an ocean on a planet known primarily for its abundance of delicious lobsters. Zaphod may
Luke Waldron
Mar 02, 2017 rated it really liked it
I actually read this short story while I was reading the salmon of doubt and I won't lie it was a very nice and welcome surprise I Almost wish he did more short stores like this as i know from reading the salmon of doubt he didn't want to carry on the story on hitchhikers at first then he felt like going back and I really wished that instead he wrote short stories like this one based on the characters we already know or completely new story's as Adams always told up the universe is big really bi ...more
Sep 05, 2017 rated it it was ok
I was confused. I was so very confused. (And this is the sort of confusion I get when nothing makes sense, not the Hitchhiker's Guide sort of confusion). I decided to do some digging only to find out that the edition I read was censored! Why, you ask? I have no idea. I had to hunt down another copy and it all clicked into place.

(This is why I'm not a fan of censorship)

With censorship, this novella gets one star from me. Without the censorship it gets three. But, because I had to go through the
Peter Derk
Nov 25, 2018 rated it liked it
I just read another review that says, in essence, that the crucial line that connects this story to the Hitchhiker's Guide universe was cut out in editing. And Douglas Adams himself, upon finding this out, was basically like, "Well, yeah. It wouldn't make any sense without that."

I'd like to think they'd put it back in. On the other, hand, having it this way really reinforces the idea of the whole series, which is that the universe is mostly random and nobody knows what the fuck they're doing.
Mar 22, 2019 rated it liked it
It has some really clever time travelling paradoxes that were fun. Reading this before you read the first book would mean you wouldn't get a few of the references and the ending wouldn't make sense at all. I'd recommend reading it right after Hitchhiker's guide since it's short and that's what it refers to.
I'm guessing there must be more to this story that connects with a later book that I have not read yet. It still has Douglas Adams' signature humor and wit and was enjoyable for such a short read. Made me interested in reading more of the series.
Andy Hickman
Nov 22, 2018 rated it liked it
Young Zaphod Plays it Safe by Douglas Adams

Absurd and quirky. Note his reference to Ronald “Reagan”.

“The craft that wasn’t a lobster dived directly to a depth of two hundred feet, and hung there in the heavy blueness..”

“OK, so the guy is cool, but... I mean own up, this is barking time, this is major lunch, this is stool approaching critical mass, this is... this is... total vocabulary failure!”
. . .
Feb 23, 2017 rated it liked it
It was a nice short story, but it didn't add anything to the rest of the series. It was like 4/5 pages long, so I don't know why Goodreads says it is 146 pages. It was nice to read something about Zaphod again, because he didn't appear much in book 4. Hopefully he is there again in book 5!
Melissa Jacobson
This was a fun and super quick addition to the HGTTG and I enjoyed it quite a bit. It was super short but a ton of fun. Zaphod is such a great character and I cannot wait to wrap up the remainder of this series :)
Frobeg Ochaeta
Jan 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Not really a book, but a book all by itself.
Nov 23, 2018 rated it did not like it
Melissa Gastorf
Mar 11, 2018 rated it it was ok
Meh, not really even enough to call a story
Shannon Daniel
Jan 26, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Yasmine Ali
Feb 08, 2018 rated it liked it
Now I can start reading the oldest series in my To-Read list.
Dec 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Never a dull moment with Douglas Adams.
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Catching up on Cl...: Hitchhiker's...Guide Young Zaphod: Spoilers 1 21 Jan 13, 2014 04:31PM  

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Douglas Noël Adams was an English author, comic radio dramatist, and musician. He is best known as the author of the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy series. Hitchhiker's began on radio, and developed into a "trilogy" of five books (which sold more than fifteen million copies during his lifetime) as well as a television series, a comic book series, a computer game, and a feature film that was co ...more

Other books in the series

Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (5 books)
  • The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, #1)
  • The Restaurant at the End of the Universe (Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, #2)
  • Life, the Universe and Everything (Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, #3)
  • So Long, and Thanks for All the Fish (Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, #4)
  • Mostly Harmless (Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, #5)
“OK, so the guy is cool, but... I mean own up, this is barking time, this is major lunch, this is stool approaching critical mass, this is... this is... total vocabulary failure!” 0 likes
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