Wow, last time I checked there were twenty five-ish Discworld books. Now there are thirty nine! I’ve read a handful of them, and now that I have accesWow, last time I checked there were twenty five-ish Discworld books. Now there are thirty nine! I’ve read a handful of them, and now that I have access to all of them, I look forward to reading them all.
I first read The Color of Magic some eight or ten years ago, and I still find it as intelligent, witty and fun as I did during that first read. I am a huge fan of parody, so I don’t think there was ever a chance that I wouldn’t like Discworld, but I never imagined it would be such a wonderful world to get lost in. The characters are great, the adventures are priceless and the writing is funny and intelligent all at once. Often times, parody loses itself in its silliness, but that is not the case in The Color of Magic and, indeed, the other Discworld books I have read.
Pratchett takes the things I like least about run of the mill fantasy stories (main characters getting themselves into numerous bleak situations and escaping in timely fashion, one dimensional villains by the droves and heroes, who, when you think about, aren’t exactly the moral center everyone thinks they are) and makes they thoroughly enjoyable. And on top of that, he takes the things I do like about fantasy stories (wizards, magic, and dragons) and makes them that much more fun. It is such a shame that TP will slowly and surely succumb to dementia from the Alzheimer’s he has been stricken with. The writing world will then have truly lost an irreplaceable gem, much like it did with the passing of Douglas Adams.
But until that day (and I’m sure long after) I will revel in wonders of the Disc and all it has to offer.
Much like The Color of Magic, The Light Fantastic was also just as good the second time around. It was even better than I remembered it to be, and I rMuch like The Color of Magic, The Light Fantastic was also just as good the second time around. It was even better than I remembered it to be, and I remembered it to be pretty damned good.
Here is the blackness of space, the myriad stars gleaming like diamond dust or, as some people would say, like great balls of exploding hydrogen a very long way off. But then, some people would say anything.
TP’s puns and jokes are always funny (lutest!), but its passages like the one above that always make me laugh the hardest. TP’s dry humor flows like fine grains of sand through an hourglass (let’s just hope it isn’t your hourglass).
There’s more plot in The Light Fantastic than in its predecessor, more action then it too, and that makes for an even more solid and entertaining read (that's also quick and easy). And of course, there is Death! Death’s appearances are more sparse then in The Color of Magic, but they are absolutely priceless. Death is probably my favorite Discworld character, so I really can't wait to read Mort and Reaper Man again, I remember both of those being equally brilliant.
So, two down, thirty seven to go. Equal Rites is next on the list and is one I haven’t read previously. ...more
I have mixed feelings about Equal Rites. On the one hand, its is a very easy book to read, and Granny Weatherwax is a brilliant character; I very muchI have mixed feelings about Equal Rites. On the one hand, its is a very easy book to read, and Granny Weatherwax is a brilliant character; I very much enjoyed the way she practiced magic, especially her ‘headology’, and the fact that most of her magic was simply made up of making people believe that what she was doing was magical, and more importantly, that it would work. On the other hand, Esk was a character I just couldn’t get behind. I can identify with the whole gender equality struggle, but I just cannot, for the life of me, fully identify with a nine year old girl. I barely remember what it was like to be nine, and something tells me that it’s probably better that way.
I did find the gender war between the wizards and witches to be amusing; mostly because of how well it mimics real life attitudes about gender roles. Granny doesn’t like the idea of male witches (warlocks) and the wizards don’t like the idea of female wizards, but Granny doesn’t seem to mind pushing Esk on them, regardless of her feelings about warlocks. And that’s all I’ll say about gender wars, because this is a book review, not a rant, though I did think TP did a great job of parodying what is often a touchy subject.
Anyway, I thought this was a pretty good read, it was entertaining, even if I couldn’t really get behind the main character all that much, and the whole theory of headology was brilliant, I really enjoy that aspect of Discworld magic. And I do look forward to reading more about Granny Weatherwax and the Discworld witches in general, as it seems I’ve passed them all over with out realizing it.
So, looks like Mort is up next in the Discworld line-up. Can’t wait to reread it, it’s always been one of my favorite Discworld books. ...more
Of the Discworld books I’ve read Mort is my favorite, second only to Reaper Man. I’ve always enjoyed reading different takes on the entity that is DeaOf the Discworld books I’ve read Mort is my favorite, second only to Reaper Man. I’ve always enjoyed reading different takes on the entity that is Death, it’s something that authors have a lot of leeway with, they can take it anywhere they want, and it’s always interesting to see exactly what an author will do with Death.
Terry Pratchett’s take on Death has always been my favorite, and while he’s more of a supporting character in this book (in most Discworld books he just pops in for a scene or two) I think he steals the show, hands down. It’s very fun to read how he becomes more human as Mort becomes more like Death, and the image of Death in a conga line is one that won’t quickly dissipate from my mind.
As always, TP’s humor and writing is spot on. It’s a rare day indeed when I like all of the main characters in a book, but Mort is one of those books where I genuinely enjoyed everything. My only real gripe with it is that there seems to be a lot of repetition about the speed at which light travels on the Disc. It tends to pop up once or twice in each book I’ve read, and that’s fine, it’s a funny little detail, but in Mort it seems to pop up anytime light is mentioned, which gets really repetitive, fast. Other then that, it’s a damn fine read.
Sourcery is next on the Discworld list, and I don’t think I’ve read it before, though it seems familiar, so maybe I have....more
**spoiler alert** Oh, poor Rincewind, stuck in the Dungeon Dimensions (but I assume not dead). At least he has the Luggage to keep him company…that sh**spoiler alert** Oh, poor Rincewind, stuck in the Dungeon Dimensions (but I assume not dead). At least he has the Luggage to keep him company…that should be comforting, but really, its not!
As far as humor goes Sourcery has some really brilliant moments, and the bar scenes with the horsemen are pretty damn funny, but on the whole this sort of fell flat for me. Its not bad, its just not as good as some of the other Discworld books, and the plot feels recycled, with a fairly common fantasy plot (sorcerers and wizards fighting for power/possible end of the world scenario) instead of some of the more unique plots of earlier Discworld books (death taking an apprentice or the first Discworld tourist having adventures). But hey, in a series of thirty nine books, you can’t really expect everything to be a diamond. Sometimes you just have to settle for cubic zirconium.
So, five down, thirty four to go in the Discworld series. I’m gonna take a little break from Discworld to read some other stuff, but when I return it will be Wyrd Sisters next to read....more
This was a pretty enjoyable read, and one of the earlier Discworld books that I had skipped over. There is some very clever and funny banter between tThis was a pretty enjoyable read, and one of the earlier Discworld books that I had skipped over. There is some very clever and funny banter between the three witches (and Granny Weatherwax, as always is a brilliant character) and the parody of/respect given towards Shakespeare's Macbeth is also pretty brilliant. All in all a fun read, but I wouldn't expect anything else from Mr. Pratchett....more
I didn't find Pyramids to be as outright funny as some of the other Discworld books I've read. That doesn't mean it wasn't funny at all, because it waI didn't find Pyramids to be as outright funny as some of the other Discworld books I've read. That doesn't mean it wasn't funny at all, because it was, but I found most of the humor to be of a more subtle hue, which is fine by me. If you are a fan of Ancient Egypt, Greece and/or Troy, I think you will be thoroughly entertained by this book, as I was. Its a great story, with wonderful bits of parody and humor, and it just goes to show that Terry Pratchett doesn't have to write something that is in-your-face funny and/or silly for it to be good....more
Having read other much of the later Discworld novels, but not this one in particular, the Patrician has always been one of my favorite characters (andHaving read other much of the later Discworld novels, but not this one in particular, the Patrician has always been one of my favorite characters (and here we get our first good look at him in series order). I'd put him second behind Death. And much like Death, I just love the way the Patrician operates. Everything he does is so calculated and everything always seems to work out to his benefit, ALWAYS. He may not be the kind of person you want running YOUR city, but he is definitely the kind of person that Ankh-Morpork needs to keep it running smoothly (or as smoothly as one can run Ankh-Morpork). The Night Watch is also a pretty lovable bunch of characters in this Discworld novel, their first of many appearances. Hell, all around, the characters in Guards! Guards! are pretty brilliant and fun to read about, even the minor appearances by the various guild leaders put in some good laughs. And of course we can't forget the Librarian or the city of Ankh-Morpork itself, which is just as much a character as any other Pratchett has written.
I really wish I could give Guards! Guards! five stars, but I can't because I found the first third or so of the book to kind of drag on in a rambling sort of way and it just made it really hard for me to read. But after that, the plot/general story got better, as did the humor, and in the end it wrapped up in a smashing manner, worthy of a five star rating. So I guess I'm gonna have to go with 4.5 for my official rating. It was an excellent book with an excellent story, once everything started coming together and its was, thankfully, worth getting past the bumpy parts early on....more
This is the second time I've read Eric, and I still think it's an excellent Discworld book. Is it the best Discworld book? No, but it's not a bad oneThis is the second time I've read Eric, and I still think it's an excellent Discworld book. Is it the best Discworld book? No, but it's not a bad one either (not sure if there really is a BAD Discworld book out there). It's easy to read, easy to get into and its full of some good laughs (and some fun parody.)
I think a lot of people see the "Faust/Eric" title and expect an in-depth Faustian parody/satire, but the first time I read Eric I noticed its size and got the impression that it, perhaps, was meant to be a short story that went too long to really be considered a short story anymore, and hence it was published as a stand alone. It would explain the lack of detail in some areas.
Eric comes off as an undeveloped character, but when you think about it, he's only thirteen. He really is undeveloped, as far as life goes. And while it seems like Rincewind is the one to have stumbled into the titular character's life, make no mistake, it's really the other way around. Eric is the one who has stumbled into Rincewind's world. Eric is a Rincewind book through and through, full of things you would expect from a Rincewind book (like constantly running from danger and the Luggage.)
It's not a bad book. Really, it's not. I think people are just too busy trying to compare it to other Discworld books, and that's something I try not to do. Pratchett gets to the point with this one fairly quickly, and it makes it a fast, easy to digest read. And really, there's nothing wrong with that....more
I think I might have jinxed myself when I said, in my review of Eric, that there was no such thing as a bad Discworld book, because I find myself haviI think I might have jinxed myself when I said, in my review of Eric, that there was no such thing as a bad Discworld book, because I find myself having just finished reading Moving Pictures and I didn’t enjoy it. Sure, a few times I chuckled and appreciated some of the nods to movie culture, but on the whole I didn’t think it was a great read. But oh well, you can’t please all the people all the time, right? Seems like most people really liked this one, but it just didn’t hit the right chords for me....more
What happens when Death is presented with the proverbial gold watch of achievement and forced into early retirement? If you said 'chaos ensues' you'dWhat happens when Death is presented with the proverbial gold watch of achievement and forced into early retirement? If you said 'chaos ensues' you'd be correct. Suddenly the (un)dead want equal rights, snow globes arrive out of nowhere and shopping trolleys amass in central Ankh-Morpork to create a mall one might not ever be able to leave. And all the while, Death learns what it's like to have time ticking against Him, to know that one day, He will die.
This has always been my favorite Discworld book, and while there are still about fifteen or so Discworld books that I haven't read yet, I'm pretty sure this will always remain the solid favorite. Terry Pratchett is almost always on the ball with his writing, but here he really shines. The upper level wizards 'struggle' with their newest undead member is hilarious, Death's struggle with life is brilliant, Miss Flitworth is easy to love (as are all the other characters, especially the shy Boogeyman and the mute Banshee) and the Death of Rats is terribly cute, no matter how much He'd like you to believe otherwise.
This is truly a wonderful read. It's funny, smart, entertaining and easy to read, exactly what a Discworld book should be.
The more I read about the witches of the Disc, the more I like them. When I first started reading Discworld books, I was skipping around, focusing onThe more I read about the witches of the Disc, the more I like them. When I first started reading Discworld books, I was skipping around, focusing on books that had characters I liked and I skipped the witch books because I thought, much like a lot of other authors, Terry Pratchett might let me down in the area of female driven stories. It seems as though many an author thinks "strong female character" equates to "bitchy and opinionated" and I was very happy to find out that Terry Pratchett doesn't subscribe to that formula.
Granny, Nanny and Magrat are all wonderful characters, as are Lilith and Gogol in their own special ways, and it is a rare occasion indeed when a book with hardly a male character in sight entertains me as much as this one did. Throw in all the fairytail references and the meddling in stories business, and this was a damn fine read, I only wish I had gotten around to it sooner.
Witches Abroad also touches on something very near and dear to my heart and that is forced Happiness and the forcing of a Happy Ending. If you are forced to be happy, are you truly happy? No, I don't believe you are. And if you force a story to end happily, is it really a happy ending? No, it really isn't. A happy ending for the sake of a happy ending is a crappy ending. A story with the right ending will be good, no matter how sad or happy it is, that's always been my belief, and kudos to Terry Pratchett for seeing the error of so many authors' ways.
A solid read, though not as laugh-out-loud funny as some of the other Discworld books. It has great characters and interesting underlying themes and hA solid read, though not as laugh-out-loud funny as some of the other Discworld books. It has great characters and interesting underlying themes and hidden meanings (and some not so hidden), should you choose to see them. It is a surprising thought provoking read, on I wish I would have picked up long ago, when I first started reading the Discworld books....more
Another great Discworld book featuring the witches of the Disc. It's starts of with a great cameo by Death and finishes in a nail biting manner, and iAnother great Discworld book featuring the witches of the Disc. It's starts of with a great cameo by Death and finishes in a nail biting manner, and in between you are left wondering if everything you thought about the those pretty elves can really be believed anymore. Beware the Glamour!...more
What happens when the Disc's first and only gun gets into the hands of an assassin? Well, naturally, chaos ensues in Ankh-Morpork. But never fear, theWhat happens when the Disc's first and only gun gets into the hands of an assassin? Well, naturally, chaos ensues in Ankh-Morpork. But never fear, the Night Watch is on the case, with fresh new recruits and plenty of laughs. A great read featuring one of the Disc's funniest and most interesting collection of characters....more