Friday, July 22, 2011

The Prose Portal

I love Jasper Fforde's Thursday Next books and their witty, book-loving protagonist. I love the idea of a world where literature reigns in popular culture, where characters have names like Braxton Hicks and Jack Schitt, where I can delight in allusions and word play that cover everything from the Bard to Buffy.

In the first Thursday Next novel, The Eyre Affair, Thursday’s Uncle Mycroft, a brilliant and “mad as pants” inventor, constructs the Prose Portal, a remarkable device that allows a reader to physically enter any book. Readers can experience the world of the text, interact with the book’s characters, and even change endings. From time to time, I think about what fun it would be to use the Prose Portal.

I haven’t made it to Greece yet, but via the Prose Portal, I could enter Mary Stewart’s This Rough Magic and experience the beaches and castles of Corfu.

I could spend a Georgian Christmas with Jo Beverley’s Mallorens and see if Rothgar looks as I imagine him.

I could drop in on an Essex sisters chat and maybe catch a glimpse of Mayne.

I could spend some time in Ireland with Nora Roberts’s Concannons. I’d stay at Brianna Concannon Thane’s bed and breakfast, talk writing with her husband Grayson, visit Rogan’s gallery to see Maggie’s glass, and definitely get a friendly hug from Murphy Muldoon.

I could give Scarlett and Rhett a happy ending, and I would definitely change the ending of Elizabeth George’s With No One as Witness.

So what about you? If you had access to the Prose Portal, what would you do? What worlds would you visit? What characters would you talk to? What ending would you change?

Note: This is another recycled Vagabond blog. My deadline is Monday, July 25, but I’m hoping to upload the final article of this assignment Saturday. I promise all new posts next week.


quantum said...

I have been meaning to try Jasper Fforde for a long time and 'The Eyre Affair' with the prose portal sounds a very suitable starting point.
Thanks for the review! *smile*

If you visit Greece then you absolutely MUST make the trip to Crete and wallow in some of the Minoan antiquities. Lazing on those beaches in the evening with Mary Stuart's book would be fabulous. Of course Corfu would do just as well though if I were your companion I would want Gerrald Durrell's 'My family and other animals'. *grin*

I would really like to use the portal to visit the Arthurian world of Mary Stuart as portrayed in her quintet of books beginning with 'the crystal cave'. To spend quality time with the old wizard Merlin would be fantastic!

Janga said...

Q, the Thursday Next books are such fun to read. I even taught The Eyre Affair once alone with Jane Eyre and Wide Sargasso Sea.

Ah, Greece! Someday I'll get there, and Mary Stewart would be a lovely companion. Visiting her Arthurian world sounds wonderful. Would you change anything?