Summer Reading: The Big Over Easy by Jasper Fforde
My ‘to read’ pile keeps growing by leaps and bounds. Over the weekend I added four more books to the mix and am well into one already – The Big Over Easy by British author Jasper Fforde. A friend of mine introduced me to the madcap stories of Fforde –where the real world blends seamlessly with the literary world – last summer. Fforde’s first book, The Eyre Affair, follows literary detective Thursday Next as she tracks down the criminal who has been stealing characters from England’s literary treasures and holding them for ransom. The author has a deft touch with his mash-up of the comedic, mystery and literary genres, and The Big Over Easy -- his fifth book -- is no exception. Centering on the Nursery Crime Division (NCD for short) headed up by Detective Inspector Jack Spratt (yes, that Jack Spratt), the novel quickly pulls the reader into the mysterious death of one Humpty Dumpty who did indeed sit on a wall and have a great fall. But was it accidental – a result of Humpty’s heavy drinking? Or perhaps it was a suicide – it was just after Easter, after all. Or . . . was it murder? (The ol’ egg did have a reputation as a lady’s, er, man.)
With clever puns and sub-plots involving, amongst other things, Jack trading his mother’s painting of a cow for some mysterious beans, and the addition of a new member to the NCD – Detective Sergeant Mary Mary (her name is sort of an odd family tradition) – and one is soon caught up in the clever ‘whodunit’. If you're looking for a fun, entertaining read with some interesting twists then check this book out.
(Click on the picture of the book for a peek at the contents over at Amazon.com.)