Continuing the much-needed escapist trend, I finally finished The Fourth Bear, the second book in Jasper Fforde's Nursery Crime series. (Admittedly, I started reading it because I thought I would have to lend it to someone else, but that situation, for various reasons, did not end up materializing.)
I liked it better than the first. Fforde has a knack for making storylines zany and zanier with each page, and he's brilliant once again in this sequel to The Big Over Easy. Detective Jack Spratt and Inspector Mary Mary are back, to try and hunt down an escaped mass murderer (The Gingerbreadman), and figure out why investigative journalist Goldilocks went into the forest if she was writing a story on giant explosive cucumbers. Meanwhile, Punch and Judy move next door to Spratt, and bears and aliens walk the human world and have to have bills in Parliament grant them equal rights.
Good stuff! Full of Fforde's notorious and delightful puns, of course!