Simon's Reviews > Going Postal

Going Postal by Terry Pratchett
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's review
Nov 21, 2011

really liked it
Read in November, 2011

It takes a pretty damn smart writer to create damn smart characters. Fortunately, Terry Pratchett is a damn smart writer, and Moist von Lipwig, confidence man extraordinaire, is one of his most engaging, intriguing characters to date.

Saved from the consequences of his crimes by Lord Vetinari, tyrant of Ankh-Morpork, Moist von Lipwig is offered a chance at redemption in the position of Postmaster. The difficulty, however, lies in the fact that the postal service has been defunct for years, and the once-proud Post Office is now chock full--as in floor-to-ceiling full--of old, undelivered letters. Better yet, the Grand Trunk clack service doesn't look kindly on competition, and people they don't look kindly on have a terrible habit of winding up dead.

Can Moist revive a decades-dead institution while avoiding uncomfortable things like death? Will he manage to win the heart of the prickly, chain-smoking Adora Belle Dearheart in the process? And are the letters really speaking to him?

GOING POSTAL is massively entertaining, as almost all of Pratchett's books seem to be. The Discworld series, while it started out simply poking fun at fantasy tropes, has evolved of late into bona fide satire. The humor is still there, and moments of ludicrousness and bone-dry wit abound, but the themes explored--corporate greed, corruption, the cost of con games--are in actuality quite serious. The increasing complexity of Pratchett's plots seems to have come with a concomitant sharpening of his satirical wit.

Also, the book's plain fun.

So forget about the deep thoughts. GOING POSTAL is yet another romp through the wonderfully complex and varied Discworld, filled with memorable characters, high tension, razor-sharp with, and more information than you ever needed about pins. Yes, pins.

Now you'll just have to read it to find out what I'm talking about, won't you?

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