Snuff is one of the newest of the many books in Terry Pratchett’s excellent Discworld series. Within the larger series there are subseries which follow particular characters. In general, you can pick any Discworld book off the shelf and expect to be able to follow it, but some can be better appreciated if you know the character history from the previous books.
Snuff is the newest book following Commander of the Ankh-Morpork City Watch Sam Vimes. In Sam Vimes’s first books he began as a poor beat cop walking the streets in his cardboard-soled boots as one of the three city watchmen. Over the other books he became Commander of the ever-growing City Watch, has become a trusted advisor of the Patrician (the semi-benevolent tyrant) and a diplomat, and started a family when he married Lady Sybil Ramkin and had a son whom they call Young Sam.
Raising Steam is the newest of the sprawling Discworld series of satirical comedic fantasy written by Terry Pratchett, the fortieth to be published.
If you haven’t read any of the Discworld series, you really should give it a try. It takes place on Discworld, a world that is (as you might suspect from the name) a flat disc that spins on the back of four great elephants who stand on the back of Great A’Tuin, a spacefaring sea turtle. My favorites in the series include Small Gods, Interesting Times, The Hogfather, and Feet of Clay. The series as a whole is linked only by the world, not always by characters or countries or time periods, though there are kind of sub-series within the main series that follow certain groups of characters to give them an arc. But you can read the books in pretty much any order (you’ll just appreciate some of the little things more if you’re aware of where the series has already been.
Raising Steam, like most of the books in the series, mostly takes place in Ankh-Morpork, the melting pot city-state that reminds me of a mixture of New York City and Los Angeles, ruled by the semi-benevolent demi-tyrannical Patrician.
Wanna see something gorgeous?
Gollancz recently announced the publication of Discworld Collector’s Library, a reprint of Terry Pratchett’s classic comic fantasy series, and the art and design for these hardcover beauties are fantastic. They are being released starting this month in the UK & Commonwealth.
Check out the larger cover images after the jump…
Today’s daily deal at Amazon includes 5 of Terry Pratchett’s Discworld novels for $1.99 Each for the Kindle platform (computers, kindles and smartphones).
Which novels are included? These!
Prices go back to normal after the day is over, so act fast if you want ‘em.
[via A. T. Campbell, III]
REVIEW SUMMARY: A very scattered, disjointed Discworld novel, which has some bright spots making it worth a look.
BRIEF SYNOPSIS: Football finally arrives on the Discworld, as well as the Discworld’s first super-model; both of these things provide a back-drop to a classic Romeo and Juliet love story.
PROS: Pratchett never fails to write excellent dialogue and some of the emotional points the book hits are very effective.
CONS: The plot feels all over the place, never really comes together, and then is hastily wrapped-up. Not so streamlined and precise as some previous books.
BOTTOM LINE: Someone who is already a Terry Pratchett fan will find good bits in here, I think. Someone who is not a Terry Pratchett fan will not find this a good place to start.
Kobo Books (formerly Shortcovers) os making Unseen Academicals by Terry Pratchett available as a free eBook download in multiple formats. Here’s the synopsis:
The wizards at Ankh-Morpork’s Unseen University are renowned for many things–wisdom, magic, and their love of teatime–but athletics is most assuredly not on the list. And so when Lord Ventinari, the city’s benevolent tyrant, strongly suggests to Archchancellor Mustrum Ridcully that the university revive an erstwhile tradition and once again put forth a football team composed of faculty, students, and staff, the wizards of UU find themselves in a quandary. To begin with, they have to figure out just what it is that makes this sport–soccer with a bit of rugby thrown in–so popular with Ankh-Morporkians of all ages and social strata. Then they have to learn how to play it. Oh, and on top of that, they must win a football match without using magic. Meanwhile, Trev (a handsome street urchin and a right good kicker) falls hard for kitchen maid Juliet (beautiful, dim, and perhaps the greatest fashion model there ever was), and Juliet’s best pal, UU night cook Glenda (homely, sensible, and a baker of jolly good pies) befriends the mysterious Mr. Nutt (about whom no one knows very much, including Mr. Nutt, which is worrisome . . .). As the big match approaches, these four lives are entangled and changed forever. Because the thing about football–the most important thing about football–is that it is never just about football.
[via Grasping for the Wind]