The book "First among Sequels" ends on a cliffhanger. The protagonist, Thursday Next, has to run for her life, to escape an impending fire.

The next book in the series, "One of Our Thursdays is Missing", has her counterpart Thursday5 investigate a crime. Thursday5 eventually finds Thursday Next, seriously wounded.

However, there don't seem to be burns involved. Thursday Next has been the victim of an attempt at her life, in the form of a taxi accident. Thursday Next's wounds are described as:

She had a fractured skull, a broken femur, and eight breaks to her left arm and hand. There were multiple lacerations, a loss of blood, fever and a concussion.

(I believe it also said somewhere that she had part of the taxi's steering column rammed through her in the accident. I haven't been able to find that back though).

So, it would seem that Thursday Nexts accident in "One of Our Thursdays is Missing" is a different one from the fire at the end of "First among Sequels" - where she may actually have escaped.

The book after that, "The Woman who Died a Lot", starts with a Thursday Next who has recovered enough to walk again.

So it seems that the cliffhanger at the end of "First among Sequels" is never quite resolved. Closest thing I can think of, is that the remake of BookWorld at the beginning of "One of Our Thursdays is Missing", also changed recent history. This is never stated in the books though.

It's not like Jasper Fforde to give us a cliffhanger and then not resolve it. At the very least he would make a joke about the structure or nature of stories. He hasn't done so in this case.

So - am I missing something here? Are the two issues the same? Or is there an unresolved cliffhanger?

1 Answer 1


There's a larger context to the unresolved cliffhanger, and yes, it is an unresolved cliffhanger. At the end of First Among Sequels, Thursday is fleeing an exploding airship (at the denouement, in an edition of The Eyre Affair [just go with it]), when her usual escape method (bookjumping) has been textually seived out of commission. The context being that there is a serial killer (a killer of serialised characters), who has made attempts at Tempe Brennan and Harry Potter, succeeded at taking out Sherlock Holmes, and the airship blowing up is the third attempt at Thursday's life (Norman Johnson, the pagerunner Minotaur, and the written Felix8 having tried earlier). Obviously, whoever the killer is, they have pull, as only a Jurisfiction Agent or a member of the Council of Genres, has the power to order the aforementioned textual seive, as well as hide Felix8's transfictional travel. But the Minotaur does not trust Jurisfiction owing to his 5 year imprisonment (see The Well of Lost Plots for further info). Additionally, during the Minotaur's original escape, had 'Who killed Godot?' as a cliffhanger (Godot being the Jurisfiction Agent killed before the UltraWord™ conspiracy started to unravel, and who's head is in a sack for most of the Thursday3). A long-running conspiracy, or dangling plot-threads? Finally, it was the Taxi driver that had the steering column rammed through him, not Thursday herself.

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