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The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy

(The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy #1-5)

4.23  ·  Rating details ·  1,691,925 ratings  ·  38,565 reviews
Seconds before the Earth is demolished to make way for a galactic freeway, Arthur Dent is plucked off the planet by his friend Ford Prefect, a researcher for the revised edition of the The Hitch Hiker's Guide to the Galaxy who, for the last fifteen years, has been posing as an out of work actor.

Together this dynamic pair begin their journey through space aided by quotes f
Paperback, 193 pages
Published June 23rd 2007 by Del Rey (first published October 12th 1979)
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James Thoenes You make it sound like reading is a terrible thing.
I think if you read this, you will most likely enjoy it and want to read the others. You won't have…more
You make it sound like reading is a terrible thing.
I think if you read this, you will most likely enjoy it and want to read the others. You won't have to but you'll want to.(less)
Callan Holpp
This answer contains spoilers… (view spoiler)

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Average rating 4.23  · 
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 ·  1,691,925 ratings  ·  38,565 reviews

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J.G. Keely
The universe is a joke.

Even before I was shown the meaning of life in a dream at 17 (then promptly forgot it because I thought I smelled pancakes), I knew this to be true--and yet, I have always felt a need to search for the truth, that nebulous, ill-treated creature. Adams has always been, to me, to be a welcome companion in that journey.

Between the search for meaning and the recognition that it's all a joke in poor taste lies Douglas Adams, and, luckily for us, he doesn't seem to mind if you
Jun 29, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
In my experience, readers either love Adams' books or quickly put them down. I, for example, quite literally worship the words Adams puts on the page, and have read the Hitchhiker's Trilogy so many times that I have large tracts of it memorized. But both my wife and father couldn't get past book one: the former because she found it too silly, and the latter because he found the writing to be more about "the author's personality" than plot and character.


The first three books in the Hitc
Emily May
Dec 05, 2010 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sci-fi
I am not one of those who think this is the best book ever written. It does not affect me on any deep emotional level and this kind of quirky sci-fi comedy is just not really my thing. However, that being said, Adams' has some of the best quotes EVER (not all of these are from this exact book):

"In the beginning the Universe was created. This has made a lot of people very angry and been widely regarded as a bad move."

"For instance, on the planet Earth, man had always assumed that he was more int
Federico DN
Apr 03, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Absurdity at its finest.

Arthur Dent is having a bad day, his house is about to be levelled down because it’s in the way of the construction of a new freeway. At the local pub, he encounters his enigmatic friend Ford Prefect. Prefect, a galactic hitchhiker, is leaving the Earth, and taking Dent with him. A minor nuisance; apparently the Earth is just about to be demolished to make way for an interstellar freeway. Dent’s realization is instant, several billions of people are going to have a ver
Mario the lone bookwolf
Mar 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: adams-douglas
A work that showed humanity its insignificance and that madness is a general, entertaining trait in the universe.

One of the greatest milestones of the rare Sci-Fi comedy hybrids, although it´s losing quality after the first 3 parts. Fantasy seems to be more prone to comedy than Sci-Fi, I don´t know why that´s the fact. I would tend to call it kind of Terry Pratchett in space, because of the unique wit, just without the stamina for so many parts. Adams dying in a fitness center of a heart attac
Emily (Books with Emily Fox)
It's not you, it's me... well maybe it's also you.

Unfortunately this book wasn't for me. Some of the humor I liked but it was too absurd for me and it was too slow to really start.

I wish I had liked it as much as everyone else but it definitely didn't make it to my "favorite books of all time" list!

UPDATE: I finally figured out what was my issue with this book. There's a French movie called "Rrrrrrr" (similar humour to Monty Pyton) and I've had way more fun using the jokes out of context with fr
Lisa of Troy
See my video review here:

This is a book written in 1979 which follows the story of Arthur Dent who is having a bad day because his house is about to be torn down to make way for a highway. However, he has more things to worry about because the Earth is about to be demolished to make way for the galactic highway. Arthur Dent and his friend Ford Perfect are scooped up from Earth just a second before it is wiped out. The two of them travel through the galaxy and encount
What does Kim Jong-Il, a thong-wearing mechanic and this missing link furry fellow have to do with The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy?
Photobucket owe it to yourself and your family to find out.

With the plethora of wonderful reviews already written for this book by my fellow GRs, I decided instead to provide some helpful, practical advice on why reading this book might benefit my fellow goodreaders. Therefore, as both life management tool and a safety warning, I have compiled my:

Top 5 Reasons
Nov 21, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Please, before anything... DON'T PANIC.

This review is harmless, well mostly harmless.

I think that one of the things that one has to keep in mind while reading this book is that it was written in 1979. Having this important factor in perspective, it's quite astonishing the vision of Douglas Adams, the author, presenting a lot of visionary elements, starting with the very "book inside the book", I mean The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, since it's presented as an electronic book. which now it'
Dr. Appu Sasidharan

Along with his friend, Arthur Dent escapes from Earth before it was demolished and goes for a hilarious yet intriguing trip through the galaxy.

Some fascinating facts related to this this book
I thought that this was a book mainly for the younger audience, and I wouldn't enjoy it. Then I accidentally came across an interview of Elon Musk where he discussed his Hitchhiker’s-Guide-inspired Design Philosophy and told that it was this book that inspired him to make SpaceX. That,
J.L.   Sutton
Feb 11, 2018 rated it really liked it
“Space is big. You just won't believe how vastly, hugely, mind-bogglingly big it is. I mean, you may think it's a long way down the road to the chemist's, but that's just peanuts to space.”

Another great reread of Douglas Adams' The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy. Always entertaining and so absurdly profound!

Douglas Adams' The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy is an entertaining romp through the galaxy. It's a book I've read several times (first in high school); however, after reading Kurt Vo
Re-Read 4/2/22:

Read this book for the first time with my daughter. I figured it is a piece of culture and I'm nothing if not a man of culture. Plus, the secret is to bang the rocks together, guys.

Out of almost all of the hilarious things in this book, my daughter was supremely taken by:

"You want me," said Prosser, spelling out this new thought to himself, "to come and lie over there..."
"In front of the bulldozer?"
"Instead of Mr. Dent?"
"In the mud."
"In, as you say, the mud."

We h
Apr 01, 2008 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I hated this book. It was required in one of my English Lit. classes in college. The time spent reading this book is time that I will never get back. I think this book may have shortened my life; it was such a waste of time.
Nov 15, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
3.5 stars

Clever & witty, but not (to me) a laugh out loud sort of funny.
It is, however, an excellent little book about the absurdity of our place in the universe. And definitely worth reading at least once.


The characters are all obnoxious and silly in the best way possible and so is the plot, but for the life of me, I can't think of a way to describe this thing without spoilers.
Psst - be nice to mice!


If you don't want to take the time to read the book?
The short answer is 42.


This was my 2nd ti
Mar 21, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sci-fi, faves
What can I say? I wish I had been in the movie, although it was bad and I guess I should be happy about NOT being in it.
Jan 08, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own, sci-fi, humor
Not sure what it was about this book that made me not like it as much as I was hoping. When I was growing up I remember watching the BBC TV show and playing the text adventure on my Commodore 64 (yes, I am getting old). Before I actually read it, lots of my friends recommended it and the cool, edgy people all loved it (basically, the hipsters of the 90s! 😉)

When I finally read it, it seemed a bit dry to me. Perhaps that was the famous dry British humor? Also, it felt like Adams was trying to incl
Tucker  (TuckerTheReader)
What a weird little book.

Something I'll do, almost immediately after finishing a book, is Google the heck out of the genre it belongs to. For example, after finishing Furiously Happy, I wanted to find a book that would make me laugh as much as it did. When in doubt, turn to Google. I have googled "most funny books" , "funny fiction books" and " comedy books". Each time, this was one of the top results. And since, I got Audible for Christmas, I thought I would give it a try. (But also because Goo
Jul 30, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Don’t panic.

This is a wholly remarkable book.

For those of you who have NOT read Douglas Adams’ classic, drop what you’re doing right this very instant and go get a book. You can buy a copy at the bookstore, download it from Kindle, or check it out at the library.

No, seriously, literally stop what you’re doing and go get a copy and do nothing for the next three to four hours as you read this brilliant and hilarious book. Go ahead, leave work, duck out of school, cancel that appointment and just r
Henry Avila
Dec 24, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Arthur Dent is having a bad day his home is being demolished, a new highway bypass is needed progress you know, it's for his own good...really, so goodbye house. On the bright side (by the way), it does not matter either. Earth too will no longer be, soon just billions of inconsequential floating pieces scattered throughout the cosmos, no one left to remember. The powers of the galaxy have decided this little insignificant, dull planet at the edge of the Milky Way must go. A byperspatial express ...more
Fabian {Councillor}
“You know," said Arthur, "it's at times like this, when I'm trapped in a Vogon airlock with a man from Betelgeuse, and about to die of asphyxiation in deep space that I really wish I'd listened to what my mother told me when I was young."
"Why, what did she tell you?"
"I don't know, I didn't listen.”

Did this make you laugh already? Fine, because the rest of Douglas Adams' famous novel includes many more of those humorous elements.

I have a very difficult personal history with Sci-Fi no
Review of the audio, read by Stephen Fry:

Overall, Fry earns a solid 'B+' for his rendition of the classic Hitchhiker's Guide. Fry has the perfect 'narrator' voice, and I generally enjoyed most of his character voices. Ford Prefect often has a rakish tone, his reading of Arthur Dent is note-perfect clueless, and Zaphod Beeblebrox has a deliciously smarmy confidence. It was a bit of a revelation to find Marvin more amusing in audio than when I read the book, although I feel like Fry might have giv
From what I can tell, I'm not in the majority when it comes to rating The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams. I'm giving it a 3, which means I still liked it... but unfortunately, I wasn't as fond of the humor as most people are.

This was a book club selection from about 6 or 7 years ago. We agreed to read just the first one in the series. And it was the first science-fiction novel we took on. I was excited. Several had already read it but wanted to again.

I'm generally a fan of cra
Reading_ Tamishly
May 24, 2021 rated it it was amazing
I need a Babel fish and make it translate my mind.

"Whatever happened to my mind, I did it."


"This planet has - or rather had - a problem, which was this: most of the people living on it were unhappy for pretty much of the time."

Story: Earth is demolished. A man is secretly taken to another planet. So enjoy I say.

It's filled with weirdos because most of them are beings from somewhere else (to keep it subtle or to make it worse) and the story is chaotic and funny as heck.

But really though, readi
Jul 15, 2018 rated it liked it
This book was more Sylvie and Bruno and less Alice in Wonderland. I didn't know what to make of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. I didn't know when to laugh and what was serious.

The treatment given to this story is phantasmagorical. The gags and mini episodic adventures are absurd, pertinently so. The fate of the planet Magrathea is a dream for communists.

I tried to get it, you know. But I don't get most of British humour. I don't get most of Monty Python's Flying Circus, and I don't get Wo
Michael Finocchiaro
Nov 07, 2020 rated it really liked it
Definitely one of the great sci-fi comedy classics with slapstick comedy, philosophical queries and the Answer 42. Always a fun book to read when otherwise life is throwing you curveballs!

So much fun to read.
Nov 24, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-in-2019
★★ /5

This was fine… I guess?
This was definitely easy to read and absorb, but at the same time, it didn’t feel like a real book. The ridiculousness of the plot sometimes was just too much and brought up me from the story. Some parts of this book were actually really interesting, but a lot of things were just annoying. I didn’t really like the character, at least for me they didn’t have the proper motivation for their actions.
I understand why people like it, but sadly it was just not for me.
They stumbled out of the Heart of Gold and looked around them. It was very quiet among the tall buildings. The ground was covered with brightly-colored objects that, from a distance, looked a little like paperback novels. Trillian picked one up.

"It's a paperback novel!" she said, surprised. "Long Hard Ride, by Lorelei James." She flipped through it. "Hm, who'd have thought that the late inhabitants of Frogstar Z would have been into women's erotica?"

She picked up some more. "Be With Me, by Maya
Will M.
Jun 13, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is another instance where it's daunting to write a review because the novel is well-known and loved by millions of people. As a Sci-Fi/Fantasy reader, it's embarrassing that I've only read this once, and I've waited 'till 2016 to read this. I'm glad that I can finally say that I've read this. I've finally read and enjoyed one of the most influential books of the sci-fi genre.

I understand all the buzz regarding this novel. This is the first time in my whole life that I laughed out loud whil
Hitchhiker's, volume 1.

Earth is destroyed to make way for a bypass. Fortunately for Arthur Dent, his friend Ford Prefect turns out to be an alien and manages to escape, with Arthur.

The plot is not bad, but it's the writing that is fantastic:

Vogon ships "hung in the sky in exactly the way bricks don't".

The Hooloovoo is a super-intelligent shade of the colour blue.

The old man who said nothing was true but was later found to be lying.

"After a second or so, nothing continued to happen".

"This mus
Mariah Roze
I read this book because it is my boyfriends' favorite series. I struggled with it so much. I already struggle with fantasy, and this book didn't explain what is happening thoroughly and develop the characters enough right away in the beginning. So like I said I really struggled.

However, I watched the movie and according to my boyfriend there was a lot in the movie that wasn't in the book, so I guess that didn't help.
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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 ...more

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