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"In the city of my birth, I had a dream..."
The Big Over Easy by Jasper Fforde 
16th-Oct-2006 12:15 pm
Why did I try again? I guess it all boils down to the simple fact that I WANT to like these books by Jasper Fforde. At least we're getting closer...

Fforde, Jasper. The Big Over Easy. 2005. New York: Penguin, 2006.
Summary: Nursery Crime Series #1. Humpty Dumpty has fallen off his wall to is death, and it's up to Jack Spratt and the rest of the ragtag Nursery Crime Division of Reading to figure out whodunnit. And, though a lot of people wanted the egg poached, it turns out to be a mad geneticist who secretly fertilizes Humpty's egg and hatches him.
Comments: As offbeat as The Eyre Affair but significantly better written, this series seems, to me at least, to be better place to begin with Fforde's "literary" mysteries. Unlike his debut, however, the world of Nursery Crime has some serious things about it that need to be explained, yet aren't--namely, why all of these creatures from folklore, mythology, and nursery rhyme are suddenly REAL. Even Jack (of Giant-Killer and Beanstalk fame) is one...and perhaps his assistant Mary Mary is, as well (whose characterization AS A WOMAN is every bit as lousy as Thursday Next's). The way in which all of the detectives are encouraged to turn real cases of crime into narratives for mass public consumption in pulpish magazines such as Amazing Crime Stories struck me as a sly jab at the world's obsession of late with reality television--after all, entertainment and reality don't always coincide in the best of ways. One thing that REALLY bothered me about the story, though: No WAY is Humpty Dumpty a convincing Don Juan. Sorry, but it just doesn't work.
Notes: trade paperback, 1st printing
Rating: 5.5/10 - If you can't stand mystery books, you won't be able to stand this novel, either--and even the weird world won't fix things.
16th-Oct-2006 04:22 pm (UTC)
Heh. I was just looking at his/her Thursday Next series yesterday on Amazon^^
16th-Oct-2006 04:24 pm (UTC)
"His." And, if you remember, I read his debut (The Eyre Affair) last month, and it SUCKED (at least IMO).
16th-Oct-2006 04:28 pm (UTC)
Ah, I was wondering what sex the poor soul named after a stone was^_^

I'll have to check your review. I think I missed it.
16th-Oct-2006 04:31 pm (UTC)
It might be a penname, but Jasper DOES sound like a man's name. ^^;

Yeah, check it. It was one of those "why did I even bother FINISHING the damn thing?" reads.
16th-Oct-2006 04:32 pm (UTC)
Really? Because names from gem stones are usually given to girls in Thailand^_^ I've gotta say though, being named Jasper makes you sound like a character in a fantasy novel XD
16th-Oct-2006 04:35 pm (UTC)
Jasper's a kind of cloudy, ugly stone, anyway...and it just SOUNDS masculine. Besides, if you read the books, you'll know from how terribly all the women are characterized that the author is male.

The whole name sounds kind of fastasy-Nordic, actually. ^^;;;
16th-Oct-2006 04:36 pm (UTC)
You know, I thought naming your kid after cities and states was bad but gems too? What's wrong with traditional names?^_^
16th-Oct-2006 04:38 pm (UTC)
It's a hippie thing, maybe. And people are always more creative with girls' names.
16th-Oct-2006 04:51 pm (UTC)
My collection of gorgeous jasper jewelry disagrees with your characterization. ^_^
18th-Oct-2006 12:55 am (UTC)
Actually, Jasper sounds to me like a male character in a bad Western movie ^_^;;
18th-Oct-2006 12:56 am (UTC)
Bad guy or good guy? I'm thinking bad guy...
16th-Oct-2006 05:17 pm (UTC)
I started reading the Eyre affair, but couldn't get myself to finish. I felt bad; I like finishing every book I start, but I just couldn't do it. If this book is better, though, I think I might give it a try.

Thanks for your summary! I always look forward to hearing about what you are reading.
16th-Oct-2006 11:20 pm (UTC)
Heh. Good to hear that I wasn't the only one who didn't like it. After listening to a thousand and one livejournalers talk about how great the Thursday Next series is, I was beginning to wonder. :P
16th-Oct-2006 05:29 pm (UTC)
"No WAY is Humpty Dumpty a convincing Don Juan. Sorry, but it just doesn't work."

.. I dont even know what to say at this. At times I envy you for being so book-brainy (something I could never achieve because I'm wired differently), and at times when I see some of the things you're compelled to finish, I dont feel so bad.
17th-Dec-2006 01:15 pm (UTC)
Review archived.
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