Currently reading: The Fourth Bear

The Fourth Bear

Jasper Fforde

I have been a fan of Jasper Fforde´s works since I bought The Eyre Affaire a couple of years ago because of the dodo on the cover. However I was quite sceptical when it comes to his Nursery crime series and haven´t read The Big Over Easy so far but then I found The Fourth Bear at the book bazaar for 50 cents and thought that was a good reason to start 🙂

I like fairy tales by the Grimms and Andersen and detective novels (mostly Agatha Christie because everything else pales in comparison) and intertextuality so I should like it- and so far I do! It´s not as fantastic as the Thursday Next series but plenty of fun in its own way.
The themes are absurd as usual, plenty of fictional characters and an interesting whodunnit. Oh, and beware of the cucumbers!

Here´s a description:

Like The Big Over Easy (2005), Fforde's first Nursery Crime
novel, this sequel offers literary allusions, confusions and gentle
satire, though, again like its predecessor, it lacks the snap of the
author's Thursday Next series (The Eyre Affair, etc.). Jack
Spratt, DCI of the Nursery Crime Division of the Reading Police
Department, is also a PDR (Person of Dubious Reality), as are most of
the characters Jack deals with, including the Gingerbreadman, a
notorious killer, and Punch and Judy, a violence prone couple who are
also marriage counselors. An alien policeman named Ashley, talking
bears, a devoted group of cucumber-growing enthusiasts and an immensely
powerful company, Quang Tech, add spice. All are grist for Fforde,
whose word play runs the gamut from puns to shaggy dog stories. The
Gingerbreadman's on the loose, Goldilocks is missing and Jack's once
again persona non grata at headquarters. As Jack and his associates
"bring justice to the nursery world," they also cast a Swiftian eye on
corporate hubris, race relations, the drug trade and myriad other
targets. (Publishers weekly)

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