Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Sausages, by Tom Holt

Some days, don’t you wonder if you’re going crazy? You know the kind of day: you get up, go about your routine, but things just aren’t quite right. Polly Mayer is having one of those days. Her coffee starts disappearing. Someone else has been kind enough to do her work. She goes to the dry cleaners to pick up her dress only to discover the shop has vanished. She asks her brother, Don, for help, and soon the weirdness envelops Don, too. He can’t find the dry cleaners, either. He makes his neighbor disappear. Soon he’s even doing, gasp, magic.

When the pair starts investigating, they discover even more odd goings-on. The development firm Polly works for seems to have a teeny problem: all the housing developments it’s been building for years have suddenly vanished. Then there are the chickens that aren’t chickens. And the two knights forced to battle each other ten times a day for the last 600 years. Not to mention the mysterious Mr. Huos, Polly’s boss, who’s missing his magical brass ring.

Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Sausages is British novelist Tom Holt’s hilarious look at pigs and parallel worlds. Full of dry British humor that is frequently laugh-out-loud funny, the book, while at times a bit overwhelming, does an excellent job of drawing the reader into this a-bit-out-of-the-ordinary world, or at least one tiny corner of it. The sibling sparring between Polly and Don is so true-to-life the reader feels like part of the family. While some of the “explanations” for what’s actually going on read as quite technical, the book is an enjoyable, fast-paced read that answers the ages-old question: which came first, the chicken or the egg?

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