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20 Local Warehouse Science Fiction and Fantasy- A to Z

The Eyre Affair (Thursday Next #01)


The Eyre Affair  (Thursday Next #01) Cover



Reading Group Guide


1. If you could jump right into any novel with Ms. Nakajima, which novel would you choose to visit? What classic novel endings have left you unsatisfied? What endings would you change if you had the power to do so?

2. Acheron Hades claims that pure evil is as rare as pure good. Do you think either exists in our world?

3. Two of the main plot devices—time travel and book jumping—illustrate the infinite possibilities of alternate endings. If you could travel through time, is there anything in history, either in the broad sense or in your own personal history, that you would go back and revise?

4. If you could choose either Ms. Nakajima's ability to jump into novels, Thursday's father's ability to travel through time, or Acheron Hades' ability to defy mortality, which power would you choose to have and why?

5. Despite the fact that he is her one true love, Thursday holds a grudge against Landen Parke-Laine for over ten years because he betrayed her brother when they returned from the Crimean War. Who do you think Thursday's first allegiance should have been? Her lover or her brother? Do you think her decision to return to Landen comes out of weakness or strength?

6. In the hands of villains like Jack Schitt and Acheron Hades, the Prose Portal could be exploited for villainous deeds, but it could also have been used to do good deeds such as producing a cure for terminal diseases. Would you choose to destroy the Prose Portal as Mycroft does without trying to extract good use out of it first? Do you think the risk of the destruction it could cause outweighs the possibilities for good?

7. Thursday's brother, the very Irreverend Joffy, tells her, "The first casualty of war is always truth." Do you think this is true? Why or why not?

8. Thursday says, "All my life I have felt destiny tugging at my sleeve. Few of us have any real idea what it is we are here to do and when it is that we are to do it. Every small act has a knock-on consequence that goes on to affect those about us in unseen ways. I was lucky that I had so clear a purpose." In a world where time is so pliable, can there be such a thing as destiny? Was there a defining moment in your life where you understood what your own purpose was?

9. Who is the worse villain, Acheron Hades or Jack Schitt? Which sentence do you think is worse—death by a silver bullet to the heart or an eternity trapped in Poe's The Raven?

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 21 comments:

Angela McGreevey, March 1, 2014 (view all comments by Angela McGreevey)
This is the first book in the Thursday Next series. Next is a former soldier, working for LiteraTech as a special ops literary detective. The book takes place in a some what futuristic 1985. Thursday finds herself in the middle of a dangerous case involving criminal mastermind Acheron Hades. Thursday will do anything to save her family and beloved books from Hades. This book is a fun detective fiction read , with a strong, relatable female character in the lead.
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Amb Crist, August 30, 2012 (view all comments by Amb Crist)
The entire oeuvre of Jasper Fford is a pleasure not to be missed, but The Eyre Affair is an excellent place to start. Yes, that's Eyre as in the beloved Austin novel which is in peril. Enter Thursday Next, a heroine of wit and style, employed as a literary detective. Next is as hardboiled as Spade and as genteel as Marple, but her tongue remains firmly in her cheek and she leaves no malapropism unturned in her pursuit of literary justice. Behind the scenes, great literature is a hotbed of characters and plots requiring vigilance and intervention to maintain the author's intent, or something like it. Everyone who reads, whether it's the Sunday funnies or cherished classics, will find something in Fford's work that gets them where they live. Be warned that addiction to Fford is likely, but his website helps ease the pain of waiting for his next case file.
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Sophie Pattison, August 5, 2012 (view all comments by Sophie Pattison)
Jasper Fforde is a genius. If you love to read, as I'm assuming you do if you're taking the time to read this comment, you will love this book. Particularly if you've read many of the English classics. Fforde is a great one for references, and I've got to tell you there's nothing that makes you feel smarter than understanding a good literary pun. Not only that, but Thursday Next is a delightful character who gets into all kinds of sticky situations with characters such as Millon de Floss, Jack Schitt, Hamlet, and Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday Next. Even if you don't get all the references (which, I can assure you, I did not) it's still a great mystery novel and an all around well written book.
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Product Details

Fforde, Jasper
Penguin Books
Duerden, Susan
New York, N.Y., U.S.A.
Fathers and daughters
Fantasy fiction
Characters and characteristics in literature
Crimean War, 185
Alternative histories
Mystery & Detective - Women Sleuths
Literature-A to Z
Edition Number:
1st American ed.
Edition Description:
Trade paper
Thursday Next Novels
Series Volume:
Publication Date:
Grade Level:
from 12
7.70x5.10x.72 in. .58 lbs.
Age Level:
from 18

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Related Subjects

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The Eyre Affair (Thursday Next #01) Used Trade Paper
0 stars - 0 reviews
$9.95 In Stock
Product details 400 pages Penguin Books - English 9780142001806 Reviews:
"Staff Pick" by ,

The Eyre Affair took me a little time to really get into, but once Thursday Next — a literary detective from the future — enters Charlotte Bronte's novel and tries to save Jane and the story, the book is thoroughly fun, with all the digs at the classics, the fantasy element, and the crazy names of the characters. It works for someone who enjoys the classics (like me) or for those who enjoy fantasy (like my husband). For me the best fun was re-reading Jane Eyre and knowing between which chapters Thursday visited and when the Japanese tourist arrived....

"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "Witty and clever, this literate romp heralds a fun new series set in a wonderfully original world." Publishers Weekly
"Review" by , "[Thursday Next is] part Bridget Jones, part Nancy Drew, and part Dirty Harry."
"Review" by , "The Eyre Affair is mostly a collection of jokes, conceits, and puzzles. It's smart, frisky, and sheer catnip for former English majors, a cross between Douglas Adams's A Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy and Jonathan Lethem's Gun, With Occasional Music, with a big chunk of The Norton Anthology of English Literature tossed in."
"Review" by , "An unusually sure-footed first novel, this literary folly serves up a generally unique stew of fantasy, science fiction, procedural, and cozy literary mystery — but in the end is more dancing bear than ballet."
"Review" by , "If you have read any of the classics of English Literature, you will feel strangely at home in the action-packed alternative universe of Thursday Next....Hectic, humorous...and most satisfying."
"Review" by , "So unusual you've got to read it to believe it; and please do."
"Review" by , "For five years, I dragged freshman boys kicking and screaming through Charlotte Brontë's Jane Eyre. It was torture ? part of the academy's "Nip a Love of Literature in the Bud" program. But finally, those plaintive cries have been answered: Through the miracle of literary-genetic engineering, Jasper Fforde has crossbred Jane Eyre with James Bond and Harry Potter....This is about as much fun as you can have in the classics section without being thrown out of the library. To those students who swore they wouldn't reread Jane Eyre 'til Hades freezes over, I have good news: He's out cold. Start reading." (read the entire Christian Science Monitor review)
"Synopsis" by , The New York Times bestseller is the first in a series of outlandishly clever adventures featuring the resourceful, fearless literary detective Thursday Next, renowned Special Operative.
"Synopsis" by ,

The first installment in Jasper Fforde’s New York Times bestselling series of Thursday Next novels introduces literary detective Thursday Next and her alternate reality of literature-obsessed England

Fans of Douglas Adams and P. G. Wodehouse will love visiting Jasper Fforde's Great Britain, circa 1985, when time travel is routine, cloning is a reality (dodos are the resurrected pet of choice), and literature is taken very, very seriously: it’s a bibliophile’s dream. England is a virtual police state where an aunt can get lost (literally) in a Wordsworth poem and forging Byronic verse is a punishable offense. All this is business as usual for Thursday Next, renowned Special Operative in literary detection. But when someone begins kidnapping characters from works of literature and plucks Jane Eyre from the pages of Brontë's novel, Thursday is faced with the challenge of her career. Fforde's ingenious fantasy—enhanced by a Web site that re-creates the world of the novel—unites intrigue with English literature in a delightfully witty mix. Thursday’s zany investigations continue with six more bestselling Thursday Next novels, including One of Our Thursdays is Missing and the upcoming The Woman Who Died A Lot. Visit jasperfforde.com.

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