Number-one bestselling author Eoin Colfer is chosen to write the sixth "Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy"

London, 17 September 2008?  Penguin announced today that it is to publish the sixth novel in the ever-more increasingly inaccurately named Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy trilogy. Eight years after the tragically early death of its creator, Douglas Adams, widow Jane Belson has sanctioned the project to be written by the international number-one bestselling children's writer, Eoin Colfer, author of the Artemis Fowl novels. The new book is entitled "And Another Thing?" and will be published in hardback by Penguin in October 2009.

Douglas Adams himself said in an interview: 'I suspect at some point in the future I will write a sixth Hitchhiker book ? I would love to finish Hitchhiker on a slightly more upbeat note. Five seems to be a wrong kind of number, six is a better kind of number.'

Jane Belson, the widow of Douglas Adams said, 'I am delighted that Eoin Colfer has agreed to continue the Hitchhiker series. I love his books and could not think of a better person to transport Arthur, Zaphod and Marvin to pastures new. The project has my full support.'

Eoin Colfer has introduced a new generation of readers to the absurdities of life, the universe and everything through his bestselling Artemis Fowl series, in which a teenage criminal mastermind wreaks havoc in this world, the next and any others that happen to be nearby. The Sunday Times has said, 'Colfer has the ability to make you laugh twice over: first in sheer subversive joy at the inventiveness of the writing, and again at the energy of the humour.'

p>Colfer has been a fan of Hitchhiker since his schooldays and said, 'Being given the chance to write this book is like suddenly being offered the superpower of your choice. For years I have been finishing this incredible story in my head and now I have the opportunity to do it in the real world. It is a gift from the gods. So, thank you Thor and Odin.'

Penguin Managing Director, Helen Fraser commented, 'In 1992 I was lucky enough to be involved in the publication of Mostly Harmless - Douglas Adams's last brilliant volume of The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy.  He was an extraordinary writer, with an ability to come at the reader from the most unexpected angles, knock them off balance and make them laugh at the same time.  Eoin Colfer is an inspired choice as Douglas's successor.  Eoin burst on the world in 2001 with his incredibly popular Artemis Fowl series, which is beloved by readers of all ages.  He is a huge talent and a fantastically funny writer, and this new book will bring as many new young readers to Douglas Adams's work as it will introduce adults to the brilliance of Eoin Colfer.'

For more information, hear interviews with author Eoin Colfer and with Douglas Adams's widow Jane Belson, on the BBC Radio 4 "Today show

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