by Chris F. Holm
"If you could step into the world of a fictional sleuth or crime-stopper, which would it be? What would be your role/character in their story?"
I confess, upon reading this week's question, I was tempted to offer up the Lily Moore series, by Criminal Minds' own Hilary Davidson. Lily is a travel writer, after all, who flits from Manhattan to Spain at the drop of a hat, and spends her workdays in luxury hotels from Acapulco to Machu Picchu. But then I got to thinking, and realized -- exotic locales aside -- folks in Lily's orbit don't exactly have a great survival rate. So maybe instead, I'll wait and see how Lily's trip to any given locale works out before I book my ticket, and steer clear of her in the meantime.
So if not Lily's, whose book-world would I most like to inhabit? Easy: that of Jasper Fforde's Thursday Next. Thursday, for those not familiar, inhabits an alternate reality in which literature is the dominant pop culture, and travel between the real world and the world of books is not only possible, but common. Thursday is involved in policing literature both in the real world (as a Literary Detective) and within the world of fiction (as a member of Jurisfiction). She also has a pet dodo named Pickwick, because of course she does.
Sounds crazy, doesn't it? In truth, it kind of is. But if you're as much a bibliophile as I am, it might just be your brand of crazy. Folks communicate via footnoterphone. There is a Great Library, which consists of every book ever written, and within it, a Well of Lost Plots, which contains works either unpublished or unfinished. Every character ever written lives and breathes (though the poorly sketched ones are kinda boring to hang out with). Which, incidentally, takes the pressure off of me for part two of this week's question. Who in Thursday's world would I choose to be? Any character in the whole of human history I felt like.
Provided they're a safe distance from Lily Moore, of course.