|First Among Sequels not pictured, and One of our Thursdays is Missing is missing, but you can read a review here.|
This series is just delightfful. And so clever. The idea is that Thursday Next is a Literary Detective with SpecOps. They police things like counterfeit Shakespeare plays, bootleg copies of Dickens and stolen manuscripts. But it's when Thursday realises that she has the ability to actually enter books and interact with the characters within that it really gets interesting. The world Fforde has built is bonkers: it's an alternative world where the Crimean War is still ongoing, Wales is a socialist republic, people travel by airship or these ace Gravitubes (UK to Australia in about 45 minutes or so), cheese is a rare commodity - sometimes smuggled illegally across borders - and, best of all, people prize books and literature above most things.
Wouldn't you love a tv series based on these books? I know I would. Kind of Doctor Who meets Lost in Austen with a dash of Life on Mars via your local bookshop.