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The Hitchhiker's Guide to a rip-off
on 24 May 2013
If Douglas Adams were still alive I would have no doubt he would be sending for his lawyers. On second thoughts this novel is so lacking in any redeeming qualities that he might choose to ignore it instead. It hardly represents a threat to his genre.
The story is supposed to be humerous but lacks any real jokes. Marvin the Paranoid Android is replaced by a know-it-all and sulky computer given to poor practical jokes. Ford Prefect is a small time (or maybe big time, I never did work it out) con man by the name of Kaymer Haynes. The Vogons are giant ants in search of sugar and there is no Arthur Dent character. Instead the protagonist (I won't call him hero as he isn't one) has two female assistants (A greedy Dr Who then), one of whom is telepathic but doesn't seem to be able to use her powers to warn Haynes of any danger, and the other just seems to be there to add to the word count. Neither female has any back story or character development, which sums up Ford Prefect - sorry, Kaymer Haynes, as well.
The plot is a mismash caper. Haynes escapes from a high security prison (we aren't told why he's there), is pursued by a grim bounty hunter (again no back story or character), finds a super-duper spaceship hidden in a cave on a planet that is about as technologically developed as the moon, then goes to retrieve money that he might be owed by another petty crook/conman but we don't know why, but which was probably stolen by Haynes in the first place. The Vogons, sorry Helreptors, turn up and by a sequence of unlikely coincidences, none of which make sense, the day is eventually saved.
There are loads of plot points I could reveal as spoliers, but as they are the only thing in the book that are interesting I won't spoil it for you. I'll let Humphries do that for himself.
Hopefully Kaymer Haynes will retire to a distant planet and spend his time counting his money. If he should reappear I will do my best to ignore him.