There are lots of things I like about this book. First of all, it’s definitely my genre.
An urban fantasy based on a kind of warped science fiction set in a dystopian future. It’s funny, satirical, and leaves you wanting more. Everything is not explained which is always a great way to start a series. The “Something That Happened”, which has transformed society into a hue based hierarchical organisation where privilege holds sway, is never explained. We know there is a Shades of Grey 2 in the offing. But for me, as a trained ophthalmologist, it has the added little tweak of intrigue in that the father of Fforde’s great world experiment is Munsell, he of the Farnsworth-Munsell 100 hue test, the most accurate test of colour vision available. Just how Munsell elbowed his way into Fforde’s head and world is also not revealed. But it is, as Fforde says, a fascinating premise which he picks up like a rugby ball and runs with Orwellian jinks towards an, as yet, distant goal line. National Colour rules the roost and, yes, we root for Eddie Russett and his plight, and hate the injustices and smile at the parody. All done with a deft humourous touch which is Fforde’s trademark.
Giant predatory swans? Roads that build themselves? I’d like a glass of what Mr Fforde is drinking, please. Take a look at his website for a glimpse into National Colour’s world. The videos are great fun. Escapist joy. Oh, and rushing to try and post this review on Goodreads led to me announcing that I am now reading 50 Shades of grey. I have tried, it’s nowhere near as funny.