Sunday, 2 February 2014

An Introduction to.. The Discworld By Terry Pratchett

I don't mean your average disc, I mean the exciting Terry Pratchett's Discworld. It is one of the biggest series of fantasy books written to this day with the lastest count being 40 in total! But don't let the word fantasy scare you away.. We all know the word fantasy can sometimes conjure images of massive Game of Thrones/Lord of the Rings books, heavy on the hand and however amazing they are, they tell an epic story. The wonderful thing about the Discworld books is they tell the story of the characters (they be wizards or trolls) but at the heart of them is a character that we will all know someone that is like them..

So let's get started.. The discworld sits on the back of four giant elephants who themselves sit on the back of a space turtle called Great A'Tuin. That is already complicated so I'm going to insert a picture here..

So the books focus on many different characters, but the main sets of characters include the Night Watch, the Witches, Rincewind the Wizard and Death and his Granddaughter are the main ones the books always come back too. I'm not gonna cover all of them, but just my favourite two; The Night Watch and Death.

So the City/Night Watch, think the Bill but with Trolls and Dwarfs and sarcasm. Lead by Commander Vimes (if you've ever seen Frost) it follows the story of the Ankh-Morpork (London on drugs) police force as they try and solve a large variety of crimes. These stories are the best for the uninitiated in the Discworld series, the plot is always fast and funny, and the characters are really accessible. I would start with Guards, Guards then moving on to Men at Arms and Feet of Clay.
My favourite characters from this have to be Carrot and Angua. Carrot is your all round nice guy, but the thing about him is he seems to make other people want to be nice as well. He knows the whole city by name (and is the undeclared king of Ankh-Morpork), but just wants to be a policeman. Angua is his werewolf girlfriend, she is intelligent, smart and has an amazing propensity for sarcasm. She is also one of the best written female characters I've ever read. Her realism combined with his unrealistic view of the world make an amazing combination to read.

Death is well Death, he collects the souls of the Discworld. But he loves cats, has a horse called Binky and a granddaughter called Susan. Susan has inherited some of his abilities, as the book says 'Some genetics are passed through the soul'. Death gets upto a lot of adventures and does appear in almost every book. But for them I'd recommend starting with Mort and then moving on to Soul Music just to set the story. But all the Death books are amazing, including Hogfather and Thief of Time!

Terry Pratchett also deals with other themes including Hollywood and Rock n' Roll, but I'll maybe save those for another time.

So are you interested in reading these books? And if so, what one do you wanna read first?

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