This is the followup to Something Rotten and takes place 14 years later...so I'm going to bypass the ol' "can't talk about the previous without spoileration" space this time. It sets off another quartet of books, which looks like it will be very interesting.
Thursday Next is now 52, has a few kids, and after the heavy dismantling of Spec-Ops, now works for Acme Carpets (secretly a front for Spec-Op freelancers) and still works in Jurisfiction, where she has to be the trainer for her fictional counterparts. Apparently books 1-4 written about Thursday made her into a slutty, single, badass longcoat and book 5 (which Original Thursday insisted be much less violent) turned her into a tree-hugging hippie, so...this is a pain in the neck for Original Thursday. Especially since her fictional counterparts really don't seem up for the job.
In her home life, Original Thursday has to confront a few old enemies, sees the ghost of her uncle Mycroft and can't figure out what she needs to ask him, and her son Friday has turned into a teenage layabout. The latter is kind of awkward because he's REALLY SUPPOSED TO join the ChronoGuard, which is about to run out of time and need Friday's future self (nicknamed "Apocalypse Next" for how many times he's saved the world) to fix the problem ASAP. However, what the ChronoGuard is up to is tied to the fate of the declining BookWorld, and not just in a "oh, by the way, we're turning Pride and Prejudice into a reality book show, watch out" sort of way...
Oh, and there's a bit of scary killer cheese.
This is complicated fun, especially with the various Thursdays and what Original Thursday's kids are up to (the development with one of them is particularly...interesting...), and it looks like it will be going into some very interesting territory in the next one. Note: this book ends on a cliffhanger, so be prepared...
Four stars from me.
P.S. I really want a book to be called Apocalypse Next.