08-24-2007 01:08 PM
I must say that when I first started writing about Thursday back in 1994, I never thought she would be published, let alone feature in a fifth book. Although the first four in the series seemed to end quite neatly with 'Something Rotten', Thursday aficionados will have noticed that there are all sorts of unanswered questions hanging over from the previous books, and some (but not all) I have tried to address in the latest novel.
With every Thursday book I always want to try out new ideas, but also base the stories in the world that I have built up over the past seven years, so although much will be new and fresh, there will also be much that is familiar. Series writing is great fun because you don't have to worry too much about explaining why the various characters do what they do - a lot of it is already set in stone and we can concentrate on the story.
As 'First Among Sequels' begins, it is fourteen years since we last met Thursday. This was mainly so I could use her son Friday as a grunty teenager who has to save the world by doing nothing at all - and it that's not pandering to the grunty teenager market, I don't know what is. In all honesty, my method of working seems to revolve around thinking up odd plot ideas and then, utilizing a series of narrative contortions, attempt to slot them all together. In this way I can connect teenage inactivity with Mycroft as a ghost, reality TV, the 'Short Now' and the demise of the Chronoguard. It doesn't generally start out so clear-cut, but as I quietly hone the plot threads, they all begin to weave together.
In the book, Thursday splits her time between the real world and the Bookworld, areas in which we run across varying degrees of satire. Whether it be a stupidity surplus in the real world caused by too much good governance, or neighboring genres in the Bookworld fighting over ideologies and border disputes, I try and keep the series topical. Add domestic drama to the mix, a few moral dilemmas and the chilling prospect of making 'Pride and Prejudice' into a Reality Book Show and the possibilities are endless!
If you enjoy books about stories or stories about books, and want a mix of thriller, fantasy, romance, horror and crime, then the TN series and 'First Among Sequels' might well be the thing for you. Enjoy!
08-30-2007 08:01 PM
08-30-2007 09:18 PM
I think TN5 is great and it has such a great ending leaving room for plenty more Thursday Next in the future.
PS - Do you think you could talk your literary people at Penguin into having your next book tour visit Iowa City again?
I read and knit and dance. Compulsively feel yarn. Consume books. Darn tights. Drink too much caffiene. All that good stuff.
08-31-2007 12:37 AM - edited 08-31-2007 12:49 AM
What do you think about the new "Choose Your Own Austen" books? When I saw them at my local B&N I immediately thought of The Bennets.
Message Edited by songgirl7 on 08-30-2007 09:49 PM
"I can't stop drinking the coffee. I stop drinking the coffee, I stop the standing, and the walking and the putting-words-into-sentences doing."
08-31-2007 10:41 AM
Just wanted to let you know that there are those of use like myself, disseminating the good word of the Thursday Next series, and its sister series, The Nursery Crimes Division – some day to the point of obnoxiousness, but nothing that you’d frown on, I promise. (looks around to make sure that one woman isn't on these boards - whistles innocently.)
When I first found the series, all the way back at the Eyre Affair, I was smitten from page one. What other author combines a love of books with a story line that keeps you laughing and hooked to the very last page?! Honestly, I only have two complaints: 1) the books are too short (of course even if they were 10,000 pages, I’d still say this… and 2) waiting a year, sometimes two, between books can be downright painful!
Mr. Fforde you are, and will always be, in my top three authors.
As a side note, if you haven’t found these books yet, stop reading this and run to B&N and pick up everything by this man, trust me! Go.. go right now!!!
08-31-2007 10:59 AM
08-31-2007 11:16 AM
You'd have to be a Master of your language, just like Jasper Fforde is of English.
Thank you, Jasper!
08-31-2007 01:00 PM
I'm looking forward to the discussion!
To join Bookcrossing to release books into the wild and catch wild books: http://members.bookcrossing.com/r/d6734128716f102a8555
09-01-2007 10:07 PM
Mr. Fforde, thank you for the comments above. I was wondering - you mention honing the plot points. When you sit down to write a TN story, how much plot detail have you worked out in advance? Do you ever find youself sacrificing an intended plot point for a good joke or vice-versa?
09-02-2007 10:39 PM
Thursday's distaste for books 1-4 had me questioning my memory of those books! Very clever ploy to increase readership of the earlier works, I must say. Now that I've finished #5, I will be rereading the others to refresh my memory (and enjoy them all over again). I"m looking forward to the further adventures of Thursday and her family, friends and enemies.
09-03-2007 09:59 AM
Thank you for your books!
High School Teacher, New Hampshire
09-03-2007 11:54 AM
09-03-2007 02:52 PM
09-03-2007 04:59 PM
09-04-2007 10:50 AM
09-05-2007 03:29 AM
I have just gotten "Thursday Next First Among Sequels" and am here ready to start it. We have all the other books in the series and the Nursery Crimes series. My Mom and I (I am 40 and she is 75,smile read aloud together the last Nursery Crime story, "The Fourth Bear" and it got very exciting when Jack had to figure out if the gingerbreadman was a cake or a cookie! I loved the humorous parts about the bears.
Nursery rhymes never looked so interesting before...
09-05-2007 09:30 PM
The plots and creativity in all of your books are what fascinate me. I admire any writer who can create new worlds using human beings and relatively modern times. I always laugh out loud when reading your books, but they also make me think in different ways about the ideas(usually satire) that you present. I am an avid reader who would love to be writer someday, but realizes that's best left to the
"professionals". By the way, I read Jane Eyre only after reading TEA and finding out how much you love it!
09-08-2007 09:20 AM
I have since started to buy the series, hoping to complete a hardcover series on my bookshelf (I was thinking of calling it the "Ffordetorium." Whaddya think?), but the hardcovers seems to have disappeared...(is this a Jurisfiction matter)
If I may also "plug" the Nursery Crime Division books here: Love them! In a weird sort of parallel way, I discovered the Fables graphic novels by Bill Willingham this summer, and was reading those in between the NCD books. I love the differing perspectives on how to revitalize these characters from antiquity and keep them alive today. I tried to tell my 11th grade students about this, but they didn't get it (but I wish they would)...
Thank you Mr. Fforde, and please, keep the series going
09-08-2007 10:12 PM
I too would like to request an annotated version, and perhaps a larger role for Bowden Cable next time!