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Men at Arms (Discworld #15)

4.31 of 5 stars 4.31  ·  rating details  ·  44,928 ratings  ·  800 reviews
A Young Dwarf's Dream

Corporal Carrot has been promoted! He's now in charge of the new recruits guarding Ankh-Morpork, Discworld's greatest city, from Barbarian Tribes, Miscellaneous Marauders, unlicensed Thieves, and such. It's a big job, particularly for an adopted dwarf.

But an even bigger job awaits. An ancient document has just revealed that Ankh-Morpork, ruled for deca
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Paperback, 377 pages
Published May 27th 2003 by HarperPrism (first published 1993)
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Daniela Not really. Most of the main Discworld novels are meant for adults (though in my experience, teenagers would like them as well). However, T. Pratchett…moreNot really. Most of the main Discworld novels are meant for adults (though in my experience, teenagers would like them as well). However, T. Pratchett has written several Discworld novels geared toward younger readers (10-13 years or so). Try "The Amazing Maurice and His Educated Rodents" or "The Wee Free Men."(less)
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232nd out of 2,951 books — 5,659 voters
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Best Comic Fantasy
8th out of 57 books — 115 voters


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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Patrick
“The reason that the rich were so rich, Vimes reasoned, was because they managed to spend less money.

Take boots, for example. He earned thirty-eight dollars a month plus allowances. A really good pair of leather boots cost fifty dollars. But an affordable pair of boots, which were sort of OK for a season or two and then leaked like hell when the cardboard gave out, cost about ten dollars. Those were the kind of boots Vimes always bought, and wore until the soles were so thin that he could tell w
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Brandon Sanderson
(This review is from 2006.)

All right, the short of it is I really liked the book. The long of it is, I’m very annoyed at Terry.

Those of you who have been following things here know that I just sold the Alcatraz books to Scholastic. They’re essentially humorous fantasy—evil librarians running the world and all that. I wrote them because I was a little frustrated at the market. I could find funny books (Snicket) and I could find books with good worldbuilding (Pullman) and I could find books with c
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Melki
Vimes smiled. Someone was trying to kill him, and that made him feel more alive than he had done in days.
And they were also slightly less intelligent than he was. This is a quality you should always pray for in your would-be murderer.


Murders are rare in Ankh-Morpork. Suicides and assassinations...well, they're a dime a dozen, but genuine murders are pretty darned rare. But DEATH has been busier than usual lately, and it's up to Carrot and Vimes of the Night Watch to figure out what the heck is g
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Richard
8.5/10

I'm going to say that to date this is the best Discworld novel I've read. The characters are well rounded with a blend of people from the last novel developing further and new additions adding to humour and conflict in equal measure. The plot is well written with plenty of twists and turns and not until near the end did things tie up nicely making it a well driven read.

The layers to this novel were quite something, on the surface this is a murder plot but underneath it is littered with po
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Steven Harbin
I'm probably biased, but I'm come to love everything I've read so far by Terry Pratchett, so perhaps my 5 stars should be taken with the proverbial "grain of salt". Still, I enjoyed this one immensely. The Discworld books sometimes have series within the overall series that follow a group of characters. This book is the 2nd in what I call the "Guards" series, following the Night Watch of Ankh-Morpork which is led by Sam Vimes.
After the events of Guards! Guards! the Watch is being expanded, both
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Tfitoby
Barely a year has passed since the last idiot in Ankh-Morpork thought they could unleash an unholy hell to help them overthrow the great tyrant ruler of their city state only to find themselves meeting the grinning face of the feline loving Death of the Disc sooner than anticipated and somebody is at it again, only this time with the help of a 'gonne.' Vimes is off getting married and Carrot is inheriting a watch embracing equal opportunities, including the evolution of Detritus the troll in to ...more
Sarah Sammis
Men at Arms is the second book I've read for the Beach Blanket Bonanza. My husband (whom I originally introduced to Pratchett's books) has been selecting the best of the Discworld books for me to read and I have been enjoying these reading "assignments" thoroughly.

Men at Arms is the next in the "Night Watch" group of books. Vimes is on the eve of his retirement from the watch and about to get married. Meanwhile, bodies are showing up in Ankh-Morpork and a new weapon has been stolen. Carrot and a
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Kaethe
2013 July 4

Pratchett can wright a novel about integration and politics and gun control that keeps one amused and engrossed and thoroughly engaged the whole time. I enjoyed it so much that as soon as I was finished I purchased the next Discworld book I hadn't yet read, Interesting Times, to start immediately.

And as many Pratchett books as I have read and loved at this point, I still find it hard to say why they're so great. There is always plot, often more than enough for several books. In this c
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Olga Godim
This novel was a joy to read. The second in the Watch sub-series, it is as much a fantasy as a mystery. People often die in Ankh-Morpork, mostly from suicide (walking along some of the city streets after dark is definitely suicidal), but now a series of murders have been committed. Sam Vimes, the Captain of the Night Watch, starts the investigation, and various complications spring in his way with predictable regularity.
The plot of this novel is just a pencil sketch, a colorless collection of e
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Jamie
Men at Arms is Terry Pratchett's fifteenth ...woah, really? This is the fifteenth Discwordld book? And I'm not even HALFWAY done with the series yet? And he's still writing them? That's AWESOME!

Anyway, in Men at Arms returns to the metropolis of Ank-Morpork, specifically the Night Watch charged with preventing suicides, such as suicide by strolling through the wrong part of town or saying the wrong thing to any of its inhabitants. Captain Samuel Vimes is relegated mostly a B-story for most of th
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Leslie
4 stars. I have only read 2 other Discworld books so I hesitated to rate this as a 5 because maybe I will like some of the other books in the series even more! In the end, I decided I can always change my rating later if necessary.

Pratchett writes a story that moves right along yet manages to slip in things for you to mull over along the way, such as the true purpose of police or the nature of power. I love the footnotes, which I noticed in the first of his books I read, Hogfather. Carrot, the s
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Dimitris
So, does it take wiping tears off one's face to know if a book you've just finished was worth the read? And I'm not talking tears of laughter, though Men at Arms is so wonderful at attacking one with a sense of humour oscillating from the brilliant puns and ingenious word-play to the outright outrageous fun, often taking a traditional comedy gag and turning it on its back. And then tickling it senseless.

Add to that, a brilliant humanistic (in the broader sense of course, as This reader is very
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Callista
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jamie
This was my second Pratchett novel, and it was a very fine read, quite hilarious. It’s the second book of his City Watch novels. I think I will read some more of these before branching out into the rest of Discworld.

I loved the new characters - the dwarfs and trolls and the dogs.
Suranjana Hoque
Aug 23, 2013 Suranjana Hoque rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Ananya Rubayat, Tajwar Hoque, Pramiti Anasuya Alam, Pranab Kairy
Recommended to Suranjana by: হাঁটুপানির জলদস্যু
Shelves: favorites
Those who read this will smile lots. :)
Ms. Smartarse
When I have first encountered the members of the City Watch, I rather disliked them. They were always misunderstanding everything due to missing about half of the big picture, and thus causing additional problems for the hero.

Thud!, the first novel that I've read about them, didn't exactly endear the characters to me either. Oh I liked Angua: smart, pretty, with a 'mysterious' monthly affliction AND all-around dangerous aura; basically the epitome of a kick-ass heroine.

Angua in Going Postal movie adaptation

Thinking back on it, I'm g
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Mary Catelli
The second Watch novel. I note for those who read the first that Carrot changes quite a bit. But on the whole I think the second version is better.

But Vimes is about to quit and become a gentleman of leisure by marrying the wealthy Lady Sybil. Political forces have made the Night Watch take on three new recruits: a dwarf, a troll, and a woman. Unbeknownst to most watchmen, there's something additional about one of them.

Murders happen. A dwarf dies in his workshop but is tossed in the river. A cl
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Hannah
Apr 07, 2015 Hannah added it
I can't really rate this book. As a whole, I loved it. But one small scene ruined my enjoyment of it, indeed, my enjoyment of part of the series entirely.

Although the scene is not actually shown, two principle young characters sleep together outside of marriage. I was totally surprised since I'd read books after this one and hadn't thought their relationship had gone to that level. Even more annoying, the young man is about as principled and honorable and chivalrous as you could dream, and the
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Reni
I loved the second instalment of the City Watch sub-series of Discworld novels even better than the first.

Men at Arms presents the old and new members of the ever growing Night Watch under the retiring Captain Vimes with a straight-up murder mystery. Only in typical Discworld fashion the mystery turns out anything but straight, but rather a squiggly, twisted piece of string.

As if that weren't enough to keep them occupied the Watch also experiences the pros and cons of affirmative action as Prat
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David Sarkies
Terry Pratchett is now taking aim at the detective fiction in his gonne sights in one of the most amusing Discworld books that I have read to date (though that is a bit of an exaggeration, but this book does sit up there with the best of the series). We now return to the antics of the nightwatch and discover that there have been some promotions (though poor Noddy is not among the ones who have been promoted). The Patrician has also decided to embrace the idea of affirmative action, so he encour ...more
Torie
I liked this one even more than Guards! Guards!, partly because the plot is a little more interesting (there's something of a mystery), and partly because knowing the characters makes their appearances that much more fun. I think what I admire most about Pratchett is his respect for his characters. He never mocks or humiliates them. Even the villains have some dignity, and the humor of the book isn't at the expense of others.

Again, he surprises me with his depth and consideration of some really
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Lizzie
Jun 23, 2015 Lizzie rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Lizzie by: borrowed from Evan.
This, friends, is a 2.5-star book, that I am rounding up. I could round it down. But let me tell you about my feelings! Because ratings, as always, are to me a method of achieving inner peace with my book.

Reasons this book deserves two stars:

- It... isn't very good! As a novel. The structural wisps involving the villain Edward were confusing instead of intriguing, and somehow heavyhanded at the same time since you see where it's going -- you just can't identify the gob of plot he left there on
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David
An assassin works behind the scenes to restore Anhk Morpork to the glory days of kings. The most reasonable way to do this is, of course, with an inventive new weapon in one hand. Only one thing stands in his way… the city watch. With each step this criminal takes the more the watch needs to learn to work together to find him. This is hard when the watch has recently turned unprejudiced, due to the Patricians decree. Trolls, dwarfs, men, and women are all forced to work to work together. Only Co ...more
Carrie
I like all the various Discworld series - the witches, the DEATH books, the wizards* - but I have the biggest soft spot for the Nightwatch (i.e. the series of books about Ankh-Morpork's policemen). I just love the characters. This Nightwatch book was interesting because, as an earlier book, a lot of pivotal things happened - Vimes got married (then promoted), the first non-humans joined the watch - Angua (werewolf), Detrius (troll) and Cuddy (dwarf). I finally found out why Carrot is (probably) ...more
Denise
Discworld novel #15: Being a tale of the manifold adventures of the ragtag group of misfits also known as the Night Watch of Ankh-Morpork, including murder, mayhem and a talking dog. Hilarious, weird and wildly entertaining.
Deborah Ideiosepius
It has been years since I read this one and it was so very well worth reading again.

the city watch is expanding and the new recruits include a dwarf and troll who feud continuously, a woman wit some very odd personal habits. As the watch expands Captain Vimes is all set to marry Lady Sybil and retire on the gravy train for life.... but he is not too happy about it, the Watch is who he is and he is more than a little lost at the notion of giving it up.

Meanwhile an assassin has dire intents on the
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Fede
I liked this second book from the City Watch series more than the previous one.

The story is entertaining as much as for the first one. It was interesting and endearing. I liked the new characters as well, but what I really loved was the evolution of Carrot: he is still that simple boy of the first book, but there is a new form of perspicacity, or even sharpness, in him that I really appreciated.
For what concerns Vimes, my number-two favorite character, I suffered for him at beginning, both becau
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Kimberly
Corporal Carrot is more than he seems…..or is he??? This loveable six foot tall dwarf is a part of the Watchmen in Discworld, along with a troll, a werewolf and many other characters. There is also the possibility that he is royalty. This is the quest of Edward d’Eath, a member of the Assassin’s Guild, to discover the truth.
In the true Terry Pratchett manner though, there is so much more to the story. This magician with phrases and words weaves many story lines into one story so they totally ma
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Unai
La guardia a tope en lo que es ya una investigación policial mas peliaguda que la anterior aventura del Dragon. Aquí tenemos asesinatos, asesinatos de verdad, es decir fuera del gremio de asesinos, lo cual es tan extremadamente raro, tanto como los robos ilegales, hechos por alguien no afiliado al gremio de ladrones. Zanahoria, Noobs y un casadero Vimes, verán la guardia ampliada multiétnicamente con un enano, un troll y una mujer!!! y todos deberán encontrar al asesino, el inusual arma homicida ...more
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La Stamberga dei ...: Uomini d'arme di Terry Pratchett 1 9 May 29, 2013 11:20AM  
Goodreads Librari...: ISBN: 9875661570 3 29 Dec 02, 2011 10:31PM  
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1654
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,
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More about Terry Pratchett...

Other Books in the Series

Discworld (1 - 10 of 41 books)
  • The Color of Magic (Discworld, #1; Rincewind #1)
  • The Light Fantastic (Discworld, #2; Rincewind #2)
  • Equal Rites (Discworld, #3; Witches #1)
  • Mort (Discworld, #4; Death, #1)
  • Sourcery (Discworld, #5; Rincewind #3)
  • Wyrd Sisters (Discworld, #6; Witches #2)
  • Pyramids (Discworld, #7)
  • Guards! Guards! (Discworld, #8; City Watch #1)
  • Eric (Discworld, #9; Rincewind #4)
  • Moving Pictures (Discworld, #10)
Good Omens: The Nice and Accurate Prophecies of Agnes Nutter, Witch The Color of Magic (Discworld, #1; Rincewind #1) Mort (Discworld, #4; Death, #1) Guards! Guards! (Discworld, #8; City Watch #1) Night Watch (Discworld, #29; City Watch #6)

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“Cats will amusingly tolerate humans only until someone comes up with a tin opener that can be operated with a paw.” 211 likes
“Something Vimes had learned as a young guard drifted up from memory. If you have to look along the shaft of an arrow from the wrong end, if a man has you entirely at his mercy, then hope like hell that man is an evil man. Because the evil like power, power over people, and they want to see you in fear. They want you to know you're going to die. So they'll talk. They'll gloat.

They'll watch you squirm. They'll put off the moment of murder like another man will put off a good cigar.

So hope like hell your captor is an evil man. A good man will kill you with hardly a word.”
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