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The Hitch Hiker`s Guide To The Galaxy By Douglas Adams Essay, Research Paper


The Hitch Hiker`s Guide to the Galaxy


Douglas Adams

Title explanation

The title, Hitch Hiker`s Guide to the Galaxy is the name of a sort of electronic encyklopedia, which contains information about just about anything in the galaxy and is especially made for Hitch Hiker`s. Ford Prefect is an editor for the Guide. All along the story Ford and Arthur are often helped out by this little gadget.


This edition that I have read is a part of a collection called The Hitch Hiker`s Guide to the Galaxy: a trilogy in four parts. It contains four books, the first of which I will be doing this book report on.


The story begins in England, in Arthur Dent?s home, but it soon expands to a science fiction like setting in outer space.

Main characters and their relation to each other

Arthur Dent is one of the main characters, he is a simple human from earth, he has a friend, Ford Prefect, who is an alien (Arthur didn?t know that until the beginning of the book) from Betelgeuse, he is an editor for the Guide. And finally there is Zaphod Beeblebrox, a friend from Ford?s youth, who is also an alien from Betelgeuse. Zaphod is also the president of the universe and he has two heads.

Main character in detail

Arthur is a really simple guy, content with his little life and not very concerned with anything else. When Ford takes Arthur with him to outer space and shows him all kind of weird stuff it all becomes a little to much for him and he all let it kind of pass him by. He just tries to stay out of harm?s way and he does not understand much of what is going on around him. He is a pretty boring fellow, if he could he would like just to go back to earth and go on with his simple life, forgetting about all that had passed.

Three things the story is about

I think the story is about the insignificance and insanity of many of the things we do, it is like the demolition of Arthur?s house at the beginning of the book: he does everything he can to prevent it, but ten minutes later all earth is demolished. It is also about bizarrity of the universe and everything on it. And finally, it is about not taking life too seriously.

Short summary

The tale begins when Vogons come to demolish Earth, Ford saves Arthur by hitching a ride on the Vogons ship together with him. When the captain finds this out, they get kicked out of the ship, but they are rescued by Zaphod Beeblebrox, who just happens to be flying in the neighbourhood in his own ship, the Heart of Gold which he stole when it was showed to him being the president of the universe. The Heart of Gold contains the Improbability drive, which is a device that can do anything as long as you know how improbable it is (that is also the reason why Zaphod stole it). In the ship are also a human woman, Trillian, and a robot, Marvin. The three of them were looking for a planet called Magrathea, there custom made planets are built, and because they have nothing else to do, Arthur and Ford decide to tag along. Eventually they find it and land on it, there Arthur finds out that Earth is actually a great computer created by the people of Magrathea by order of the mice to calculate the question of life, the universe and everything because they had built a computer that gave them the answer to it, but when they got the answer they realised they didn?t know what the question was. The mice want to take Arthur?s brain because he is the last part of the computer Earth, since it blew up five seconds before the question was calculated. But they escaped and went off to have a bite at the restaurant at the end of the universe.

My opinion

What I liked about it:

-the incredibly good sense of humor

-the insane devices and gadgets that they use

-the way Arthur never understands

-the always busy Ford

-the ever depressed Marvin

-the strange ways of Zaphod

What I disliked:

-the end of the story, nothing really happens

I strongly recommend this book if you want to laugh and enjoy some real crazy things.

And you can never be prepared for what?s going to happen.

Jakob Skantz

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