Dirk Gently’s Holistic Detective Agency is a novel that I have been wanting to read for a long time. I’m a huge fan of Douglas Adams writing and after watching the short lived series a few years ago that starred Stephen Mangan, I made this book a priority to buy and read.
This book is very different to Hitch-hiker’s Guide To The Galaxy in terms of where it is set, 80’s England, but the surreal influences are definitely still there. The start of the book sees more normal goings on with slight references to the abnormal but as the book nears the end we see the weird nature of Adams writing style return. With robot monks, horses turning up in bathrooms, time travel and many more other things, it may make you think but it is a welcome and warm return to the style of writing we know and love from this author.
The book may be named after Dirk Gently and his Detective Agency but we do not actually hear from or encounter Dirk until Chapter 14, nearly halfway through the book. We hear a couple of things about him before then like his time at university and that Dirk Gently is not his real name but other that that it is mainly about the story of a man called Richard and his boss, Gordon Way.
When Dirk does make himself known, it is in what you would obviously expect from Adams, an odd manner. This not only drives our curiosity about this man who is clearly a bit off the wall but also gives us little too work with making us keen to read on and find out more. Dirk is a very odd character but one that is constantly intriguing really driving the story from his arrival to the end of the book.
I can’t even begin to explain anymore of the book to you as it just wouldn’t make any sense without you reading it for yourself so all I can say is go out, buy the novel and read the wondrous words of a great writer.