Douglas Adams's Guide to The Hitch-Hiker's Guide to the Galaxy is a BBC radio production sold as an audio book on two cassette tapes. The program was first broadcast in 1998, marking the 20th anniversary of the first radio program in the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy series.
The first tape lasts 55 minutes and is narrated by Peter Jones, who narrated the original radio series. It features comments by many of the people involved, telling how the series was created and how it developed. The participants are Douglas Adams, Simon Brett (producer of the very first program), Simon Jones (Arthur Dent), Geoffrey McGivern (Ford Prefect), Paddy Kingsland (sound effects and audio mixing), Stephen Moore (Marvin), Geoffrey Perkins (producer of the first two radio series, except for the very first program) and Nick Webb (Pan Books).
These comments are intermixed with some clips from the radio programs, in particular some of our favorite highlights such as the destruction of the earth and Marvin telling everyone how depressed he is.
It's very interesting hearing these people tell their first-hand account of how it all started, and how surprised they all were at the huge success they had created. There is also the exciting story of how the last program in the second series was so plagued by deadline problems that it almost didn't get broadcast, and the mind-boggling conditions they worked under to complete the job in time.
The second tape lasts 50 minutes and consists of Douglas Adams being interviewed by Iain Johnstone. Douglas Adams was an intelligent, knowledgeable and outspoken person with many interesting opinions, and listening to him is very rewarding, even if one is not a Hitchhiker's fan.
Many topics are touched upon, and the way in which Douglas Adams can jump from one subject to another, while showing how they are connected, is quite exciting.
Just to mention some of the topics: Cambridge University and Footlights, Monty Python, Graham Chapman, Star Wars, Tolstoy's "Resurrection", "Last Chance to See", the Nordic god Thor, is Arthur Dent really Douglas Adams, Simon Jones, light switches, Richard Dawkins, atheism, Procol Harum, Doom Watch, X-Files, Sherlock Holmes, Arthur C. Clarke, Digital Village, John Cleese's influence in selecting "42", the Hubble Constant, and his daughter Polly (born when Douglas Adams was, you guessed it, 42).
In conclusion, if you're a Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy fan then this is a must-have. If you don't know Hitchhiker's, but you're interested in hearing a stimulating, yet humorous, discourse on the human condition, then you will probably like listening to the Douglas Adams interview.