I had no clue what this book was about when I started reading it and still had no clue until at least halfway through. Since it is the 6th novel in the series, it would probably have helped to start at the beginning with The Eyre Affair. If I had known more about the series I probably would have enjoyed it even more than I did, and I loved it!
The Thursday Next series (Thursday is a detective of sorts, I guess) takes place in an alternate world where England is run by the Goliath corporation and where there is another world contained in books (Book World). I'm not quite sure I could describe Book World very well. I tried to tell my family what it was like and failed so I apologize for the lack of clarity. Book World is where fictional characters live and it is divided by genre. The characters are constantly on call in case someone in the real world decides to read their book. Thursday Next is part of the real world (or Outerworld) but since she has a series written about her there is also a written Thursday Next who lives in Book World. The written Thursday Next discovers that the real Thursday Next is missing and sets out to find her. Now you can see why I was confused. I think alot of the background is explained in the first book.
What made this book so fun for me, and I did laugh out loud several times while reading, is all the literary puns and humorous allusions. The book was just filled with them and was very very clever about it. I didn't understand all of them, I guess I have some more reading of the classics to do, but I got the gist of most of them. Anyone who is a real bibliophile would appreciate this series!
The language and everything in it was really very clean, I don't remember anything particularly inappropriate but only very well-read teens and adult could appreciate it much. I'm really not sure what category to put it in. Wikipedia called the first novel in the series "genre-busting", meaning that it has a little bit of everything. Rated PG.