There are a lot of people who love Douglas Adams’ five-book trilogy. The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, for example, is one of many books that are just as enjoyable. I strongly recommend reading The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy if you haven’t already. Rereading Arthur Dent’s story is a pleasure, and it’s still relevant in today’s world. If you’re looking for titles that are similar, have a look at the following list.
Books like The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy
The Eyre Affair, by Jasper Fforde
The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy and other sci-fi classics serve as good reminders that life is funny. Douglas Adams’ final novel, The Eyre Affair, was published two years after his death.
Time travel, cloning, and literature are all commonplace in an alternate 1985. SpecOps 27 is a full-fledged police department dedicated to fighting literary crime.
Thursday Next, a literary detective with SpecOps 27, is the focus of our story. In order to protect fictional characters from being kidnapped, the literary detectives are on the case. Of course, among other things. Using her uncle Mycroft’s Prose Portal, Thursday must enter Charlotte Bronte’s novel and save the day when Jane Eyre is targeted by Thursday’s former University Professor (now an arch-criminal and the third most wanted man on Earth).
Thursday Next author J.D. Fforde’s first novel, The Eyre Affair is a lighthearted, poignant reminder of how much joy a good book can bring to your life.
To Say Nothing of the Dog, or How We Found the Bishop’s Bird Stump At Last, by Connie Willis
Books like The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, a comic sci-fi classic, are frequently overlooked in favor of more somber fare. To Say Nothing of the Dog, is as amusing and mischievous as it sounds…
In 1940, Ned Henry, a time traveler, visits Coventry Cathedral to study the cathedral’s vaulted ceilings. In the hilarious tale, Ned is searching for the Bishop’s bird stump, which Willis never really explains. Our hero, Ned, frequently experiences “time lag” (jet lag but for time travel), which causes him to get ever more confused as he attempts to help the Lady Schrapnell rebuild Coventry Cathedral in the future.
If you’re not already dead or stuck in the past, this book is sure to make you laugh. Willis’ clever and amusing story features mismatched lovers, boat rides on the Thames, and important cats and dogs. Start here if you want a good laugh.
Night Watch, by Terry Pratchett
One of my all-time favorite comic books is The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. Sam Vimes (City Watch Commander of Ankh-Morpork City) was introduced by Pratchett in Guards! Guards! Despite this, the title (along with Thud! Snuff and Jingo) is one that keeps making me laugh.
While on the hunt for a criminal, Sam finds himself transported back in time, where he finds himself as a young cop just starting out on the beat. In the midst of a bloody revolution, Vimes has to alter the course of events without changing the past. Additionally, Vimes must ensure that his actions do not impede Sam from becoming the man Vimes knows he is today… and possibly last week… Is time travel possible, or is it just a fantasy?
Pratchett had a special talent for fusing comedy with tragedy and dealing with the inevitable end of life. Not even Night Watch can escape this. Moreover, Vimes is a character with whom anyone who has ever felt disrespected can connect.
Clovenhoof, by Heide Goody & Iain Grant
There are a wide variety of books like The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. Clovenhoof was recommended to me in 2015, and since then, I’ve been giggling uncontrollably. The devil is exiled to Earth after being fired for his egregious incompetence and being forced to coexist with humans. At the Birmingham International Airport.
Satan adopts the guise of Jeremy Clovenhoof and sets out to live a human life. Making friends with his next-door neighbors…sort of. Lambrinis and Findus crispy pancakes are two of the best foods and beverages ever discovered. In addition, the free money that credit cards provide makes him very happy. While this is going on, Jeremy may have to put down his pitchfork for a while longer as there is a takeover plot afoot in Heaven.
When it comes to the characters in Clovenhoof, Satan is just another annoying neighbor with disgusting habits. Despite this, he’s a magnet for attention. One of a growing and hilarious series, Clovenhoof delights, appalls, and makes you laugh out loud at the same time. Frequently, both. In the end, a book is all you need.
All Systems Red, by Martha Wells
Martha Wells’s novel, The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, bears an uncanny resemblance to the classic. All Systems Red is the first in a series that follows a security android who has become self-aware through hacking into its own settings.
Murderbot (though it never says it out loud around humans) is the android’s self-proclaimed moniker due to the fact that it’s been accused of killing a few people. To Murderbot, living alone and watching soap operas is a way of life. On an alien planet, something goes awry in the protection of scientists, and Murderbot is drawn to the humans.
Even if they don’t resemble the people it sees on soaps. This is, without a doubt, an outstanding novel. All Systems Red is a heartfelt, funny, and at times heartbreaking depiction of the human condition. Everything from soap operas to telenovelas.
The Martian, by Andy Weir
Characters who are “fish out of water” in books like The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy are a common theme in popular culture. No one, not even the Martian, is immune. It is assumed that Mark Watney has been killed in a storm on Mars, and he is left behind on the red planet. Watney, on his own, decides to persevere.
Watney fights for his life with the help of math (and poop). Meanwhile, he expresses his ideas about life on Mars, often to amusing effect. The search for Watney intensifies when NASA learns that a long-thought-dead astronaut is actually still alive and well. Is there a chance they’ll make it in time to see him?
Almost cult-like status has been achieved for the Martian. There is something missing from the film, starring Matt Damon and directed by Ridley Scott: the book’s sense of humor. As one of the first successful self-published authors, Weir sold millions of copies before being picked up by a traditional publisher.
The story alternates between dramatic and comedic elements, but it is the comic relief that helps the dramatic elements come together. In Watney’s text message exchanges with NASA, they are particularly amusing. In spite of this, The Martian has a human heart at its core, and you can’t help but be drawn in.
Is this your first time reading it? More books like The Martian can be found on our list!
Good Omens: The Nice & Accurate Prophecies of Agnes Nutter, Witch by Terry Pratchett & Neil Gaiman
In 2019, a significant portion of the general public was exposed to Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman’s dark humor and comedic sensibilities. A Discworld novel at heart, Good Omens also plays like a Neverwhere.
When the Antichrist is born, the end of the world will be near. Aziraphale (Angel and former gatekeeper of Eden’s Eastern Gate) and Crowley have bad news to report (Demon and former serpent responsible for convincing Adam and Eve that apples were actually a really nice fruit).
As Crowley and Aziraphale have grown attached to their time here on Earth, they find the thought of it all ending a little unappealing. As an Angel and a Demon attempt to avoid… Well, angels and demons… while saving the world, they form one of the most hilarious alliances ever.
Gaiman considered the TV series’ production, filming, and distribution to be one of the greatest achievements of his career. The only thing he regrets is that Pratchett could not be there to witness it all. The scripts for both the show and the book are top-notch, with plenty of laughs to be had. It’s possible that Good Omens will satisfy your craving for books like The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy.
Deep Secret, by Diana Wynne Jones
A YA and children’s author before the term YA existed, Diana Wynne Jones is one of the best known. As a companion piece to The Merlin Conspiracy, Deep Secret showcased Jones’ sharp wit and dry humour. The characters are fun to follow and you can’t help but laugh out loud (especially if you’re a fan of science fiction).
Rupert Venables (the world’s current Magid) and Maree Mallory are central to the story, which is primarily set at a science fiction convention (potential Magid in training if she could just stand still and be less bloody annoying). Aside from trying to find a new ‘Magid-in-training,’ Rupert is also tasked with keeping our world safe from the multiverse. Others are fans of science fiction and fantasy events. I find this to be especially true when it’s difficult to tell if they’re actually dressed up in cosplay.
Deep Secret is a lighthearted look at the ‘convention’ mentality, and it’s a lot of fun.