I have seen an edition of The Hitchhikers Guide To The Galaxy that was a compilation of four books, The Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy, The Restaurant at the End of the Universe, Life, the Universe and Everything, and So Long, and Thanks for All the Fish.

The book described itself as A trilogy in four parts, but after I finished Life, the Universe and Everything and started So Long, and Thanks for All the Fish, it's quite clear that the original series is only a trilogy, and the fourth book is just an epilogue, of sorts.

When I searched for the series on the Kindle Store, there were compilations claiming to have five or six books in them. Ever since then, the question has bugged me: how many books are there, officially, in The Hitchhiker's Guide to The Galaxy series?

  • 50
    I'm glad that you were able to get your answer, but have you considered Googling? After all, the first google result is a link to the Wikipedia page, which clearly lists the novels in the series.
    – Jeff
    Sep 12, 2017 at 15:46
  • 4
    The 4-book compilation was obviously written before "Mostly Harmless" was written/released.
    – BradC
    Sep 12, 2017 at 16:48
  • 7
    Simply not enough.
    – motoDrizzt
    Sep 12, 2017 at 20:11
  • 11
    @motoDrizzt - Having read 'And Another Thing' I'm sad to say, one too many.
    – Valorum
    Sep 12, 2017 at 20:58
  • 16
    The question should read: How many books are there in "The Hitchhiker Trilogy"? Sep 13, 2017 at 7:22

1 Answer 1


The right answer of course is 42!

More seriously, but not too much, The Hitchhikers Guide To The Galaxy is famous for being a Trilogy in Five Parts (this should be taken with the same ironic spirit of the books themselves of course!)

The novels

The main novels of the series are five:

  1. The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (1979)
  2. The Restaurant at the End of the Universe (1980)
  3. Life, the Universe and Everything (1982)
  4. So Long, and Thanks for All the Fish (1984)
  5. Mostly Harmless (1992)

A sixth book, not written by Douglas Adams but commissioned by his wife, was written by Eoin Colfer:

  1. And Another Thing... (2008)

The short story

There is also a short story, by Douglas Adams himself, set in the Hitchhiker's universe:

The collection

To my knowledge, the most complete omnibus edition that collects all the aforementioned works by Douglas Adams (so, without And Another Thing...) is:

And another thing...

It is worth noting that there is also a book called:

This is a collection of various writings by Douglas Adams, including an unfinished draft of a new novel, called itself The Salmon of Doubt; the original intention of the author was to make it an installment of his other Dirk Gently series, but later he thought that it would be better suited to be a part of the Hitchhiker series.

A complete list of works and collections pertaining to this series is available at the Internet Speculative Fiction Database.

  • 101
    It always disappointed me that it started being referred to as "A trilogy in five parts" once Mostly Harmless was released. It would have been infinitely superior to call it a "trilogy in four parts" that had five books in it. Sep 12, 2017 at 16:48
  • 90
    Mostly Harmless said on the cover (on at least one edition) "The fifth book in the increasingly inaccurately named Hitchhikers Trilogy".
    – armb
    Sep 12, 2017 at 18:01
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    @DavidRicherby I would upvote your answer but you already have 42 votes! Sep 13, 2017 at 7:27
  • 17
    @David Richerby I definitely remember back in the day, at least in Germany, seeing ads for Mostly Harmless announcing it as (the german equivalent of) "Volume five of the four part trilogy", so you're definitely not the only one with that opinion
    – TheDelta
    Sep 13, 2017 at 8:43
  • 9
    In German, "Mostly Harmless" is subtitled "Der fünfte Band einer vierbändigen Trilogie" (Volume 5 of a four-volumed trilogy).
    – glglgl
    Sep 13, 2017 at 11:50

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