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Review: New Terry Pratchett Novel is a Series of Tubers

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June 13th, 2012

Sir Terry Pratchett first came up with the idea of the Long Earth multiverse back in 1986. He set it aside to focus on Discworld. The 75 million copies sold of those wildly popular fantasy novels would indicate that this was a pretty good idea. Even the Queen of England agrees.

As uncomfortable as it is to admit, Sir Terry’s career is drawing to a close. Before he makes his appointment with the tall, thin chap WHO TALKS A BIT LIKE THIS, there’s time to dust off old projects. The Long Earth is a brilliant Science Fiction collaboration with Stephen Baxter: a love letter to all Pratchett fans, readers, and lovers of wonder everywhere.

From here on out the main body of this review will contain spoilers *1, but nothing you wouldn’t get from the first 50 pages of this short but highly concentrated novel. Pratchett’s hallmark humor abounds, but this is nowhere near the level of Anhk-Morpork wackiness. There are no footnotes, but the text may contain trolls and elves *2.

Read the full review here.

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It's all about Headology: Terry Pratchett and the Discworld novels

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May 7th, 2012

Terry Pratchett has written many books for adults and children. They have a lot to offer psychology by providing good explanations and examples of how the human mind works, argues Chartered Psychologist Dr Kate Sparks.

The majority of Pratchett’s literary output focuses on the fictitious world of DiscWorld, a flat planet held up by four elephants which stand on a giant turtle which is slowly travelling through space. One could describe his work as fantasy meets fairytale, folklore, quantum physics and philosophy, but they also tellus a lot about psychology .

Read the full article on The British Psychological Society website

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I Shall Wear Midnight by Terry Pratchett – Review

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April 16th, 2012

I Shall Wear MidnightThis was the most relaxed read I’ve had the pleasure of experiencing in quite awhile. It was awesome; it was Terry Pratchett. If ever you’ve read a Terry Pratchett novel, you know what I’m talking about. His books are funny, quick, easy to read, non-stressful, and often delightfully punny. It was a 400-page novel, but it felt like a 200-pager. I love Terry Pratchett’s reliability; I love being able to pick up any of his Discworld novels and know I’m in for a good, hilarious, effortless couple of days of reading. I wholeheartedly recommend any of his Discworld books to anyone over the age of 8, whether ye be a Tolstoy fanboy or a book-a-year reader. There’s a little something for everyone, and I Shall Wear Midnight is no exception.

I Shall Wear Midnight is the fourth book in a Discworld plot sub-arc featuring the young witch Tiffany Aching, but that doesn’t mean you should pass it by if you haven’t read the first three. I hadn’t! It always adds a little something if you’re familiar with the recurring Discworld characters like Granny Weatherwax, Nanny Ogg, and the Watch, but the books are written so that you can pick any of them up at any point and still be in for a wonderful journey. Pratchett’s style is just descriptive enough that, even without having read the three preceding Tiffany Aching stories, I didn’t feel like I missed out on any of the necessary details, and certainly never felt lost. I only every felt perfectly in tune with the characters and plot, and entirely absorbed into Tiffany Aching’s world.

Read the full review on the Nikki/Brewer website.

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Review: Small Gods by Terry Pratchett

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March 23rd, 2012

Small GodsSo my first reread and review is #102 Small Gods by Terry Pratchett. There are three good reasons for this: (1) this is one of my favourite books, (2) I already had a copy and was saving it for a rainy day and (3) it’s been a rainy day, literally as well as metaphorically.

Small Gods is brilliant. It’s a story about people and gods and where ethics come from and doing the right thing. It’s also a fast-paced tale about nearly getting killed a lot. Philosophy, it turns out, can be quick on its feet…

Read the full review on Elizabeth’s blog.

 

 

Jamie Reviews: Terry Pratchett – Snuff

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February 23rd, 2012

As the sand pours through Sir Terry Pratchett’s gilded hourglass I find myself again honoured to be able to review his latest work of craft; Snuff.

The Discworld collection is comprised of several mini-series and several one-off novels; each has emotion and plot that comes together to make a meta-series that has allowed fantasy to become more than just swords and sorcery. In fact for the most part Pratchett’s works have been almost completely deprived of the traditional elements of the fantasy genre; sure it has dwarves and trolls, witches, wizards and the undead, but for the most part race has been more about background colour than overarching plot. Ankh-Morpork is home to any species with money in their pocket.

Over the last few years Pratchett has worked very hard to bring each of his mini-series to a satisfactory conclusion; not an easy task with a world as large as the Disc…

Read the rest of the review on the Burn Bright website.

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Forget Analysts And Experts, Just Read Pratchett

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January 21st, 2012

In 1786, the great Scottish poet Robert Burns wrote, “Oh wad some power the giftie gie us, To see ourselves as others see us! It wad frae monie a blunder free us, an’ foolish notion.” Someone did give us that gift, 60 years before Burns wrote “To A Louse” – Jonathan Swift in Gulliver’s Travels. Unless one has studied Gulliver’s Travels in school, it is just a fantasy tale of a voyage to strange lands. But in reality, it was a scathing indictment of contemporary British society, wrapped in a story that could, but did not necessarily, make people see the world they were living in.

Swift set the model for modern political exposé and satire. Before him it was a pretty straightforward field, exemplified by the Celtic bard and the court jester – make fun of the rich and powerful in a sufficiently public way that one didn’t get thrown in the dungeon. The subtlety of using non-humans to portray the foibles and failures of humanity has worked very well. Swift was the intellectual grandfather of Jules Verne, Rod Serling, Isaac Asimov, Ray Bradbury, Anne McCaffrey and the entire range of science fiction and fantasy writers of the past three centuries.

But few of those inheritors for Swift’s legacy have been as brilliant at it as British author Terry Pratchett.

Read the full article on the Letz Get Real website.

Snuff – Review by Moira de Swardt

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January 19th, 2012

Regular readers of Terry Pratchett’s Discworld fantasies will need no encouragement to buy this quirky whodunit.

For them it will be familiar territory and they will already be fans of Pratchett’s wonderful sense of humour and wacky thinking which make him such a masterful story-teller.

Snuff is that addictive (because of the nicotine) tobacco substance often sniffed by old ladies. It makes them sneeze. It also means “to extinguish” as in to snuff out a candle. In this extinguishing context it has the sinister overtones of death. To “snuff it” means “to die”, often before one would do so if it were left entirely to natural causes, as in “snuff movies”.

Read more on the Artslink.co.za website.