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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Not your average meal out
I can now confirm that whatever version of The Hitchhiker's Guide that appears in my head it's not the books. I think I've deluded myself that after a 16 plus years gap that I'd actually read them rather than had a mangled version of half listened too radio plays and TV series with a little new film mixed in. So after getting over that I found The Restaurant at the End of...
Published on 25 Oct 2009 by Amazon Customer

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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars An entertaining sequel although without many new ideas
This is the second in the series of the Hitchhiker guides written by Douglas Adams with the continued adventures of Arthur Dent, Ford Prefect, Zaphod Beeblebrox (including both his heads) and Trillian.
The book starts where the Hitchhiker’s Guide finishes, with Zaphod asking Arthur whether he’s hungry, suggesting they go to the restaurant at the end of...
Published on 10 Dec 2003 by Darren Simons


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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Not your average meal out, 25 Oct 2009
By 
Amazon Customer "Gav" (Cardiff, United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Restaurant at the End of the Universe: 2/5 (Hitchhikers Guide 2) (Paperback)
I can now confirm that whatever version of The Hitchhiker's Guide that appears in my head it's not the books. I think I've deluded myself that after a 16 plus years gap that I'd actually read them rather than had a mangled version of half listened too radio plays and TV series with a little new film mixed in. So after getting over that I found The Restaurant at the End of the Universe quite familiar but also very refreshing.

Beyond the two key moments of the book, one that involves the Restaurant at the End of the Universe, there is a weaving of something bigger that involves Zaphod and his brains, which might hopefully explains why he stole the spaceship Heart of Gold in the first place.

As I'm book two and still on familiar territory I'm getting the feeling that for Adams plot wasn't the important factor, as you could boil it down those two main set pieces, but more the language and the playing with humanity and our view of ourselves.

The humour and there are lot of funny moments at times comes from how stupid we are. We being everyone in galaxy it seems. Though saying that we're not important and you realise that when you read The Guide's entry on The Universe - some information to help you live in it. Boiling down to it's vast so vast in fact that anything in it so small that it's not worth mentioning. So nothing anyone does is very important.

But what they do is fascinating especially the way that Adams writes it. Not only has he given us a great cast in Arthur, Trillian, Ford, Zaphod and Marvin he's placed them in some in some bizarre and mind altering situations and seeing how they cope. And Arthur's request for a cup of Tea at the beginning is so not the answer to anything.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Even better than a Pan Galactic Gargle Blaster, 14 Dec 2002
By 
Daniel Jolley "darkgenius" (Shelby, North Carolina USA) - See all my reviews
(HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)    (REAL NAME)   
The Restaurant at the End of the Universe begins where The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy left off, only Zaphod Beeblebrox's idea of stopping for dinner at the aforementioned restaurant is delayed a bit (or an incredibly long bit, depending on your upcoming temporal location). Having escaped the legendary planet Magrathea without having been killed by intergalactic policemen or, in the case of Arthur Dent, having his brain slicked up and studied for the inherent Question of the Life, the Universe, and Everything which is undoubtedly hardwired into it somewhere, the hoopiest cast of space travelers in the galaxy thought their troubles were over, or at least greatly lessened. They were completely wrong. The Vogon ship that destroyed the earth shows up to destroy the last two remnants of that now-dead world, namely Arthur Dent and Trillian McMillian. Unfortunately, Arthur's increasingly strident demands for a cup of real tea have the entire computer system on board the Heart of Gold focused on that task rather than anything as silly as escaping imminent destruction. This is just the beginning of this particular set of adventures. Other highlights include a visit by Zaphod's dead great-grandfather, a night of drinks and food at the Restaurant at the End of the Universe, Zaphod's experience inside the universally-feared Total Perspective Vortex, a trip in the mega-rock band Danger Area's stunt ship into a sun, a meeting with the real Ruler of the Universe, and a return trip to the Earth-sort of.
Nobody crams as much comedy per page as Douglas Adams. While The Restaurant at the End of the Universe isn't quite as amazing as its predecessor, this is only because its predecessor was so amazingly original and different from everything that came before it. The satire Adams employs, often quite subtle, is as brilliant as always; anyone who reads this book will laugh, but only some will realize that he/she is really laughing at himself and the absurdity of human life that Adams is playing off of. These characters are more real to me than many of the people I know in real life. Best of all, they don't change: Arthur Dent remains the rather bemused, clueless soul he has always been; Ford Prefect is just Ford, only more so; Zaphod-well, Zaphod's just this guy, you know; and poor longsuffering Marvin the Paranoid Android is still the most depressing (yet hilarious) robotically engineered life form in the galaxy. If these crazy characters and Adams' brilliantly comedic narrative don't make you laugh, you would be well advised to don a pair of Joo Janta 200 Super-Chromatic Peril Sensitive Sunglasses because you are headed smack dab into big trouble indeed.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another very funny and warped look at the universe., 29 Jan 2005
By 
Ian Tapley "thefragrantwookiee" - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (REAL NAME)   
THE STORY:
Having escaped Earth shortly before it's destruction, Arthur Dent finds himself travelling in the company of the work-dodging journalist Ford Prefect, the insane adventurer Zaphon Beeblebrox, Tricia Macmillan (aka Trillian) a girl he met at a party and the morbidly depressed robot Marvin. Together they pull up a seat in the establishment of the title and prepare to watch the destruction of the universe.
WHAT'S GOOD:
More of the same from Adams, with wonderfully twisted logic combines with the insightfully witty entries in the Guide to provide alot of clever ideas and more clever humour. As always, Arthur's slightly bemused take on the events of his life add a tone to the story that rings amusingly true for a fellow Englishman. By now we all know that the answer to the Ultimate Question About Life, The Universe And Everything is 42. In this book (in another wonderful twist of logic) we discover that though the answer is correct, the question itself is wrong. Best of all is when Arthur and Ford find themselves on a spaceship full of insufferable middlemen, beauraucrats and hair dressers, who turn out to be the founders of the human race.
WHAT'S BAD:
I found that Adams' disposal of the supporting cast was a bit casual and poorly explained. Also, the description of the Restaurant is pretty nausating (but that's probably intentional).
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy � Part 2, 23 May 2005
By 
Jane Aland (England) - See all my reviews
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While later additions to the series can be read on a take them or leave them basis, it's really rather pointless to separate The Hitchhikers Guide To The Galaxy from The Restaurant At The End of the Universe, as the two books seem to form the two halves of one longer story. As such this sequel finally wraps up all the mysterious clues left about Zaphod Beeblebrox's past brain surgery and his reason for stealing the Heart of Gold in the first place, and we finally get the Ultimate Question of Life, The Universe, and Everything - or at least as close as we are going to get thanks to a brilliant twist ending that sees the whole history of life on Earth upset 2 million years in the past. The Hitchhikers Guide itself start to play a larger role than just a framing device thanks to the novel starting with a trip to their publishing offices, and it's interesting to note just how much of this novel is dominated by Zaphod Beeblebrox - it's only really in the last third of the novel after they are all separated that Arthur Dent steps out of the shadows. In effect 3 excellent concepts crammed together - Zaphod's quest for the ruler of the universe, the Restaurant at the End of the Universe itself, and the Golgafringan ark - this novel lives up to the brilliance of Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy and satisfyingly wraps up the tale. The later novels are fun, but to all intents and purposes this book completes the tale.
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Do you have a reservation, Sir?, 22 Dec 2003
It was always going to be difficult to write a sequel to the phenomenally successful Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy, but do you know, I think Mr Adams just about pulls it off. If the reviews on this page are anything to go by, opinion is greatly varied on the matter, but I believe all the warmth, wit and sci-fi jargon from its predecessor spills over into the Restaurant at the End of the Universe.
We begin the story where the Hitchhikers Guide left off, with the Arthur and his strange new friends hurtling through space on the stolen ship, the Heart of Gold. No sooner has the book begun however, a familiar set of poetry-loving aliens reappear - the dreaded (yet hugely entertaining) Vogons. The circumstances surrounding their attack on the Heart of Gold ship is tremendously amusing in itself as all computer intelligence aboard Arthur's spacecraft is currently preoccupied with the character's request for a decent cup of tea. It takes a while, but a cup of the finest China hot drink finally appears. As the title suggests, the set of characters eventually find their way to the curious restaurant Milliways, situated - rather obviously - at the end of the Universe. Within this particular section of the story, I greatly enjoyed the wealth of description regarding the interior of the eatery. Douglas Adams takes the opportunity to let his imagination run wild, and the reader is allowed to learn of the "five tons of glitter alone" that "covered every available surface... The other surfaces were encrusted with jewels, precious seashells from Santraginus, gold leaf, mosaic tiles, lizard skins and a million unidentifiable embellishments and decorations. Arthur glanced round, half expecting to see someone making an American Express commercial."
Needless to say, Adams continues his much loved writing style and goes on to introduce a batch of brilliantly comical characters, including intergalactic rock star Hotblack Desiato, (who is spending a year dead for tax reasons) and the dim-witted Captain of an unusual aircraft, who has spent the last three years conducting meetings with his crew from the comfort of his bath. One character I missed from the first book however, was the amusingly annoying (if that's at all possible) Eddie, the ship's computer. That is not to say that he doesn't appear, but only briefly. Marvin the paranoid android is depressed as usual, and kept me entertained in his loathing of everything. I felt that the ending was rather lacking though, as some of the characters seem to just disappear and we do not get to find out what becomes of them (not until the follow up novel, 'Life, the Universe and Everything' that is).
There are plenty of unforgettably sharp lines: "Trin Tragula - for that was his name - was a dreamer, a thinker, a speculative philosopher or, as his wife would have it, an idiot." The section involving the hunt for the man who rules the Universe (an idiot who lives in a shack in the middle of nowhere) is especially enjoyable, as is the usual banter between the chief characters, who are on top form. Overall, I would have no hesitation on recommending the Restaurant at the End of the Universe, but do be sure to read the Hitchhikers Guide first. This truly is the stuff that cults are made of.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars How do you follow up a work of genius.....?, 23 Mar 2005
By 
Amanda Richards "Hotpurplekoolaid" (ECD, Guyana) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (REAL NAME)   
.... With more of the same.
While not so good as a stand alone (you'll be lost in time & space without the background of Book 1), this second in the umpteen-part, increasingly inaccurately named Hitchhiker's Trilogy tries even harder than the first to laser your funny bone.
Seems that the thing we call (ultimately to be used-to-call) Earth is really just a mighty big supercomputer, built to work out the ultimate question to the ultimate answer, 42. Like all expensive software however, just before it actually does whatever it's supposed to do, it crashes - in this case due to the hacker Vogons and their total annihilation programme. Unlike your regular hard drive, two bits escape to byte another day, and we continue their story.
In one of the many funny lines from the book, Zaphod Beeblebrox remarks, "I am so hip I have difficulty seeing over my pelvis". This book is just as hip.
Our heroes are aboard their Improbability Driven spaceship, when Arthur Dent happens to tie up all the computer circuits just when the Vogons are launching an attack. Zaphod decides its time to see dead people, and with a strange twist, he and miserable Marvin, the depressed computer, disappear, while Arthur takes a tea break.
Zaphod materializes elsewhere and immediately starts looking for the man who rules the Universe, while Marvin continues to depress and be depressed. In my humble opinion, Marvin is the star of this book, but I digress.
After having his sense of perspective sorely tested, Zaphod improbably conjures a happy reunion, although this leaves him sadly out of pocket. Deciding that they should find the nearest place to eat, their ship's computer zaps them to Milliways, the Restaurant at the End of the Universe.
From this half-way point, the book takes off on a fresh tangent of humor, floor shows, loud rock bands, talking meat, and wicked vehicles - that is, until the universe ends.
Then the humor starts all over again.
A very worthy follow up to the famous first.
Amanda Richards
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars An entertaining sequel although without many new ideas, 10 Dec 2003
By 
Darren Simons (Middlesex, United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This is the second in the series of the Hitchhiker guides written by Douglas Adams with the continued adventures of Arthur Dent, Ford Prefect, Zaphod Beeblebrox (including both his heads) and Trillian.
The book starts where the Hitchhiker’s Guide finishes, with Zaphod asking Arthur whether he’s hungry, suggesting they go to the restaurant at the end of the universe. Now as restaurants go, this place is a little unique as since it’s the restaurant at the end of the universe there is something that little bit unique about this place – ie. you can watch the universe being destroyed every time you visit it.
In terms of the writing style, there’s not all that much new in this book beyond the predecessor and yet it’s an entertaining read. If you’re thinking of buying this book, also check out the ultimate hitchhiker’s guide which contains all the main books from the hitchhiker series. Compared to the other books in the series, this isn’t my favourite story although it does have some great bits in it. I suppose that given the incredible originality of the first book in the series, it was something quite tough to live up to, but do read it anyway – if nothing else, to read the next in series “Life, the Universe and Everything”.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Nobody Writes Jokes in Base 13, 21 Oct 2006
Written by Douglas Adams, "The Restaurant at the End of the Universe" was first published in 1980 and is the second instalment of his legendary five-part "Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy" trilogy. It starts within a matter of hours of where "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy" finished so - at the risk of stating the obvious - is entirely the wrong place to start !! The series started life as a radio show, before becoming a book, a television series, a play and a bath towel. Douglas Adams was born in Cambridge in 1952 and died in May 2001 in California.

The Earth has been destroyed, officially to make way for a hyperspace bypass, and only two humans - Arthur Dent and Tricia McMillan - have survived. Arthur was rescued by an old friend called Ford Prefect - a roving reporter for "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy", a sort of interstellar Rough Guide. The pair managed to escape the demolition of Earth by sneaking on-board the Vogon ship in charge of its destruction. Arthur and Ford are later picked up by Zaphod Beeblebrox, the two-headed, three-armed, renegade ex-President of the Galaxy and an old school-friend of Ford's. Beeblebrox's spaceship, "The Heart of Gold", is the most powerful and unpredictable ship in the universe. Its crew is completed by Marvin, a paranoid android, and Trillian - as Tricia is now known - she'd met Zaphod at a party some months previously.

At the end of "The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy", Zaphod had decided to visit Milliways, the restaurant at the end of the universe. However, following an argument with the ship's computer, he has to calculate the improbability factor the need to actually get there himself. Unfortunately, the Vogon ship that destroyed Earth is approaching the "Heart of Gold" with a view to killing the planet's last surviving ex-residents. With the computer frozen, trying to understand how to make a cup of tea for Arthur, there is no apparent escape. The only possible option is to hold a s'ance, so Zaphod can ask his deceased great-grandfather for help. That help involves a trip to Ursa Minor Beta, home to a certain hugely popular guide book, and Frogstar B, the most evil world in the galaxy and home to the Total Perspective Vortex.

Like "Hitchhiker's...", this is an extremely silly and very easily-read book. However, although there's more of a point to what the characters get up to in this instalment, I'd still recommend reading "Hitchhiker's..." first. Hugely enjoyable and highly recommended.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Same great characters, same great writing style, 30 Jun 2014
This review is from: The Restaurant at the End of the Universe: 2/5 (Hitchhikers Guide 2) (Paperback)
Zaphod Beeblebrox has been getting thoughts from the part of his brain he locked way when he became President of the Galaxy. They’re telling him to go find the real ruler of the universe and as much as he tries to ignore them, they’re very persistent.

The same great characters are back for the sequel to The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. Compared to the previous book I’d say that some of this book feels a little repetitive and it is a slightly less funny. However, these don’t really detract from the book as a whole. What I would’ve liked is something a bit more substantial in terms of plot. The first book set the scene and I would’ve liked something more elaborate to follow it.

However, I do adore the writing style of this book. I love the Adams’ creative use of language, going so far as to invent different verb tenses for time-travel situations and the wonderful naming of anything that can be named (“You ever had a Pan Galactic Gargle Blaster?”). Adams’ style conveys great wit and intelligence that makes reading a delight.

Great reading for when you’re looking for something easy-going, fun and witty
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5.0 out of 5 stars Adams at his best, 9 May 2014
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The story gets better and more weird page by page, this book is pure heaven and a must to read. Si
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