Monstrous Regiment (Discworld, #31)
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Monstrous Regiment (Discworld #31)

4.12 of 5 stars 4.12  ·  rating details  ·  33,961 ratings  ·  780 reviews
War has come to Discworld . . . again.

And, to no one's great surprise, the conflict centers on the small, insufferably arrogant, strictly fundamentalist duchy of Borogravia, which has long prided itself on it's ability to beat up on its neighbors for even the tiniest imagined slight. This time, however, it's Borogravia that's getting its long overdue comeuppance, which has...more
Paperback, 496 pages
Published 2003
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Nataliya
Pratchett addresses two questions here: (1) “Do you think it's possible for an entire nation to be insane?” and (2) Does - and, more importantly, should - a well-placed pair of socks (for 'certain' sort of padding) make a difference?
“The presence of those seeking the truth is infinitely to be preferred to the presence of those who think they've found it.”
As far as Discworld series is concerned, this book can be easily read as a standalone novel. It brings us to the little backwards country...more
Algernon
There was always a war. Usually they were border disputes, the national equivalent of complaining that the neighbor was letting their hedge grow too long. Sometimes they were bigger. Borogravia was a peace-loving country in the midst of treacherous, devious, warlike enemies. They had to be treacherous, devious, and war-like, otherwise we wouldn't be fighting them, eh? There was always a war.

The Night Watch goes to War! Or, at least, that was my expectation before I started the novel. Only thin...more
Patrick

Five stars really aren't enough.

I think this might be my favorite Terry Pratchett book. I've read it at least 3-4 times, and re-reading it today, I'm delighted to discover that it's every bit as good as before.

As an added bonus, this book would be easier for new readers of Pratchett to pick up. There are a few characters from previous books, but they only have very brief cameo appearances. Other than that the book is pretty much self contained....

pat

Carly
**edit 11/26/13
Born in the war-torn, misogynistic country of Borogravia, Polly Perks has grown up with the folksong echoing in the back of her mind. Perhaps, then, it is only natural that when her brother goes missing in action, Polly decides to use the song's example to find her brother. She cuts her hair, practices her swagger, and, equipped with a strategically-placed pair of socks, sets off to enlist. Of course, after countless years of war, Borogravia recruitment is scraping the bottom of t...more
anenko
It seems that every genre fan worth the name should read at least one Pratchett novel. I find the large body of works devoted to Discworld rather intimidating, which is why Monstrous Regiment is one of the few Discworld novels that I have read. With the exception of a few preexisting characters, this novel stands well on it’s own. Above and beyond that, I was drawn to this book because it is about women disguising themselves as men--and I have a weakness for stories about crossdressing heroines....more
Shovelmonkey1
May 18, 2011 Shovelmonkey1 rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: hardcore Discworld fans but its not for newbies
Recommended to Shovelmonkey1 by: A life long discworld affection
Shelves: read-in-2011
Normally I would include a Pratchett book on my "clear-unparalled-genius" shelf but this one is not getting a spot on there. I've read everything that Pratchett has written (Discworld, Gaimen collaborations, plus the Diggers/Truckers/Wings books and other discworld spin-offs) and while this book is clever in the trademark Pratchett way, the story is less funny because it is closer to the real world than many of the others in the series. The charm of the Discworld is that normally its like lookin...more
Johann Coetzer
This book was really a wonderful read, it just shows that gender diversity is important and in some places it is more needed than in others.
Now I have seen that some people here did not give this book such a great review. It does boggle my mind as to why they have given three stars or less.
The biggest thing to remember is that the books of Terry Pratchett does have a reading order and follows a story line and should by all means not be read in publication order.
In all I can not say to much on th...more
Meghan
Ahh.. thank goodness for GR reviews.

Why, you ask?

Because I'm about to besmirch an author I adore. And I'm glad to be following in other footsteps that had a similar hill to conquer.

I don't love this book. I just don't. Mr. Pratchett has a gentle and funny way of adding real world elements to his books, poking fun at some pretty difficult moral issues. And yet this book seemed too heavy-handed, too obvious, and too repetitive.

Once upon a time I considered myself a feminist. That was before husban...more
An Odd1
Polly "Perks" blonde Borogravian barmaid cuts her braids, practices her belching and swaggering, and joins tobacco-chewer legendary Sergeant Jack Jackrum's little lads. Perks seeks her big slow-witted brother Paul, one of the many missing In-and-out troopers. "Shufti" Manickle seeks "Dear John".

"Tonker" Halter keeps close to and restrains pyromaniac pal "Lofty" Tewt. Vampire Maladict is addicted to coffee instead of blood. Frail "Wazzer" Goom prays, more fervently than the average citizen, and...more
Craig
The Discworld novels have always been wacky and irreverent, but after first reading Night Watch and now Monstrous Regiment, I think Mr. Pratchett has made a leap forward in how he constructs his stories. I'm not really sure what's changed - it just seems that his latest two books are less about the zany characters being thrown into peculiar and comedic situations, and more about the situations themselves. They feel more "novelly," for lack of a better term. As Mr. Pratchett himself has reportedl...more
Carole
I love all of the Discworld series. Terry Pratchett makes serious points about life, the universe and everything through the creation of a totally believable parallel universe. He comes across as a man of great integrity who yet never becomes preachy, but laugh-out-loud funny! My particular favourites in the series are the books featuring the witches and those featuring the City Watch. 'Monstrous regiment' follows the fortunes of Polly, who joins the army disguised as a boy. Pratchett neatly sid...more
Michelle
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Rebecca
At the end of Monstrous Regiment I had that feeling you get when you reach the end of a good book and it comes to a conclusion you admire and one that is not too easy. One that hints that this is only the beginning and it was a brilliant one. Twists, turns and a few pantomime-worthy moments. I'm not sure how a reader, unfamiliar with the Discworld, would take the novel but it's a book I'd recommend wholeheartedly. I want to read it again already. It's the little things, the birds and the 'Oh, Su...more
Karla (Mossy Love Grotto)
(view spoiler) It's a plot gimmick that never gets old, even after the tenth surprise reveal!

Haha, uh, NO.

I'm sure his fans would tell me this wasn't the best Pratchett to start with. My choices are always so BAD for highly-rated authors! ;D

His humor isn't exactly a ha-ha kind of funny. More a very quiet kind of funny. So quiet I missed it entirely.
Allan Dyen-shapiro
I gave Terry Pratchett another chance. Friends who say he's brilliant told me I made a mistake by starting with his first book, the Color of Magic. They said skip the first three and all others are great. Well, I saw one in the library from 2005--the 31st Discworld novel. I actually thought Color of Magic was better.

This book opens in a regime on the edge of collapse, which is in perpetual war with every other state. For various reasons, a unit of misfits is the last one to enlist. It includes a...more
Lobdozer
When a war breaks out on a backwater part of the Discworld, a young woman poses as a boy so she can enlist in the military to look for her brother.

As much as I like Terry Pratchett and his brilliant Discworld series, this book does come across as one of his ever-so-slightly less inspired efforts.
The jokes are still funny, but seem just a little more obvious than usual. The themes Pratchett addresses are relevant and worth exploring, yet he seems to venturing more into straight up “[….] is bad,...more
Tracey
Sep 17, 2010 Tracey rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone with an interest in satirical humor that occasionally throws in a belly laugh
Shelves: re-read
Re-read Sept 2010 & still just as good as I remembered - probably my favorite Discworld novel.
****************
Received Monstrous Regiment as a Christmas gift & have put off reading it til now, as I knew once I finished, I'd be all caught up with the doings of the Discworld and that would make me sad. :^)

Polly Perks is the daughter of an inn owner in the duchy of Borogravia, a small country with a big attitude. Their national deity, Nuggan, continues to rewrite the rather strict script...more
Tracy
This is one of the better Discworld books, but I like Pratchett better when he is co-authoring a story with someone. The book started out great, it's a story about the last regiment in a crazy land whose God hands down stupid decrees and they are fighting all the bordering countries. The regiment is made up of a vamp, an ogre, a troll, and 4 girls impersonating boys and they are the countries last hope. Ha! It's funny here and there, but I was impatient and bored the last 70 pages. But I'm on a...more
Kit Dunsmore
I was surprised to find a Pratchett book I couldn't like, but I did it. What seemed like it was going to be a fun romp with gender issues in the military turned into something so ridiculous as to be ludicrous, and I just couldn't find it funny. He had an interesting idea, but in taking it to extremes it turned into nonsense instead of humor. Not his best work.
Cheryl in CC NV
Bravo. One of the most linear and comprehensible of the Discworld novels, and still plenty enjoyable. Highly recommended to young women. And other people. ;)
Berit Rasmussen
Monstrous Regiment is the first Terry Pratchett novel I have read and it was a little different than I expected from reading the back cover. I guess I was expecting it to be a little more realistic, and instead I soon found it had trolls and vampires and Igor's, along with silly names and a very strange religion. Nevertheless, I really enjoyed this book being a little more 'out there' and different.

The whole concept of the book was pretty humorous to begin with: a girl dressing up as a boy to g...more
Christina Alenko
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
H. M. Snow
Monstrous Regiment has many of the best qualities of Pratchett's successes with the Discworld multiverse. It made me laugh out loud time and again, particularly in the footnote asides. Polly, Lt. Blouse, Sgt. Jackrum, Maladict, and the rest of the odd squad virtually climb out from between the pages. As far as that goes, they have more substance than many of his earlier-developed characters. It's no wonder: this book, like many of Pratchett's more recent works, also contains much of his darker m...more
Princess
I am not a reader of fantasy books. I much prefer my fiction to take place in this world, not somewhere new thank you very much. However, this book was the book club's selection for this month. I think that's the reason I like my new book club so much. I have been challenged to read outside my comfort zone per se and I am loving it!

Polly is a girl living in a country called Borogravia. Her brother has gone off to war and she hasn't heard from him in a while. In Borogravia it is an "Abomination u...more
Jaime Nelson
Monstrous Regiment by Terry Pratchett (Doubleday 2003) Humor/fantasy


Readers claim they can't read a page of Pratchett without laughing aloud. He does it again with Discworld's thirty-first installment, Monstrous Regiment - a cross between Mulan and The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen.


Pratchett's Monstrous Regiment explores the myth of honor and glory in battle. Soldiers of Sergeant Jackrum's regiment aren't who they pretend to be. In fact, none of them even enlisted because they wanted to figh...more
Bryn
Monstrous Regiment is a good deal darker than is normal for Pratchett. Set in Borogravia, a small, warlike nation on the Discworld, it follows Polly Oliver as she dresses as a boy and goes as a soldier. There's a lot of folk songs out there in which girls do this, following lovers, looking for lost people, seeking revenge, or death, or just because they want to do the things gender excluded them from doing.

Between the feminist reference in the title, and the folk, it's not entirely difficult to...more
Wade
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Vanita
I usually don't like war stories, but this one, being one of the best Pratchetts I've read so far, is so clever and funny - I loved it!


Some great quotations (possibly SPOILERS):
The sergeant turned to Polly and grinned, which made his scars move oddly and caused a tremor to shake all his chins. The word ‘fat’ could not honestly be applied to him, not when the word ‘gross’ was lumbering forward to catch your attention. He was one of those people who didn’t have a waist. He had an equator. He had g...more
Ms Smartarse
I love the Discworld books because they're so quotable. I read them because they're funny. Sure they're making fun of some concepts, but it's generally something that's not related to me.

So perhaps because this book dealt with feminism, I felt rather annoyed. OK, so I'm a woman and I should want to read this kind of stuff... but I don't. I want a book to entertain me (yes I'm fickle like that... always wrote dismal literary analyses).

While this book did entertain, it was also incredibly moralis...more
Andme
I'm still fairly new to Discworld, but they tell me I began with best of the books - Monstrous Regiment and The Truth. Before that I've read The Colour of Magic. I have yet to read the rest of the books so I'd be able to give a better, more founded opinion, but so far, I am loving Terry Pratchett and he is quickly becoming one of my favourite writers.
The way he uses language, the word games and phrases, the subtle descriptions all make Discworld very appealing. His characters are always interes...more
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Sir Terry Pratchett sold his first story when he was thirteen, which earned him enough money to buy a second-hand typewriter. His first novel, a humorous fantasy entitled The Carpet People, appeared in 1971 from the publisher Colin Smythe. Terry worked for many years as a journalist and press officer, writing in his spare time and publishing a number of novels, including his first Discworld novel,...more
More about Terry Pratchett...
Good Omens: The Nice and Accurate Prophecies of Agnes Nutter, Witch The Color of Magic (Discworld, #1) Mort (Discworld, #4) Guards! Guards! (Discworld, #8) Night Watch (Discworld, #29)

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“The presence of those seeking the truth is infinitely to be preferred to the presence of those who think they've found it.” 620 likes
“Do you think it's possible for an entire nation to be insane?” 467 likes
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