nyr2012

Review: Snuff, Terry Pratchett

Title: Snuff (Goodreads)

Author:   Terry Pratchett

Rating: 

Series: Discworld, No 39

Genre: YA/Adult Fantasy

Published: Doubleday, 2011

Pages: 378

Paper copies (hardback): Amazon.com • Amazon.co.uk • Book Depository

E-copies: Amazon.comAmazon.co.uk • Ebooks.com

It is a truth universally acknowledged that a policeman taking a holiday would barely have had time to open his suitcase before he finds his first corpse.

And Commander Sam Vimes of the Ankh-Morpork City Watch is on holiday in the pleasant and innocent countryside, but not for him a mere body in the wardrobe. There are many, many bodies and an ancient crime more terrible than murder.

He is out of his jurisdiction, out of his depth, out of bacon sandwiches, and occasionally snookered and out of his mind, but never out of guile. Where there is a crime there must be a finding, there must be a chase and there must be a punishment.

They say that in the end all sins are forgiven.

But not quite all…

Review

The National Year of Reading theme for February is Laugh, and if there’s one Fantasy author who makes me laugh, it’s Terry Pratchett.

I’ve loved reading each book in the Discworld series as they’ve been released for a long time now. I love the world that Pratchett has built over the years, populated with its many varieties of people and creatures and reflecting the real world in a slighty wonky mirror. I usually find that the stories begin fairly quietly, then become harder and harder to put down – the type of stories that cause me to miss my stop on the train, or stay awake reading until I realise that it’s suddenly two am and I have to be up in a few hours.

Snuff is no exception, almost making me rather late for work a couple of times, although in this case the most exciting part is a fair way before the end of the story and the rest sort of comes in bites of action.  This installment in the story of the Discworld is about murder, slavery and prejudice with a tip of the hat to Jane Austen. There are some pretty dark goings-on such as torture, loss of children and sacrifice that aren’t directly dealt with in the story, but we see the aftermath.

In general, I’m not a fan of the Commander Vimes books. The stories about the City Watch are great, don’t get me wrong (plus I think I have a bit of a thing for Captain Carrot), but Vimes occasionally comes across as being a bit too self-important, for all his supposed hatred of his titles. He always seems to know exactly what’s happening before it happens. While that may make him a good copper, it tends to annoy me for no particularly good reason.

That said, I do enjoy the stories he is usually a part of, involving other races and their acceptance into Ankh-Morpork society. I also love Lady Sybil and little Sam and I think they should be in more stories!

While Snuff was not my favourite Discworld book, it is still a very exciting and funny read. Get yourself a copy and have a Laugh this month.

~~

On a related note, here’s my Discworld shelf. A shiny gold star goes to anyone who can tell me if I’m missing any!

Year of the Dragon Reading

It seems that 2012 is an auspicious time to be starting a blog about fantasy books – not only is it the Australian National Year of Reading, but it is also the lunar year of the Dragon!

National Year of Reading

2012 is the National Year of Reading in Australia, focusing on teaching children to read and love reading, and also to allow keen readers to find new inspiration. Events are planned all over the country in libraries, bookshops and schools, so if you’re in Australia make sure you check out the Love2Read website at http://www.love2read.org.au to see what’s on near you and how you can get involved.

 

Year of the Dragon

This year is the Lunar year of the Dragon, considered the luckiest year in the Chinese zodiac. Those born in the year of the Dragon are fierce, ambitious and ready to take risks.

What better way to celebrate the year of the Dragon than by reading a stack of Dragon-related stories? My Year of the Dragon challenge is this: read five books related to Dragons in some way then come back and let me know what you read! Take a button for your site if you wish as well.

Here are a few suggestions:

  • Any of the Pern books by Anne McCaffrey (Amazon.com • Book Depository)
    • Even though the first Pern book, Dragonflight, was first published way back in 1969, they remain fantastic stories. The world and characters will stay with you long after reading them!
  • The Inheritance series, Christopher Paolini (Amazon.com • Book Depository)
    • Eragon, Eldest, Brisingr, Inheritance – Eragon and Saphira’s story is an epic one, and I’ve only read the first two so far. Definitely on my list.
  • How to Train Your Dragon, Cressida Cowell (Amazon.com • Book Depository)
    • There are seven books for young readers about Hiccup and the dragons of Berk. The dragons of the books are quite different from those in the movie – they’re worth a read to get the real story, even if I do like the movie-version Toothless better.
  • The Hobbit, J.R.R. Tolkien (Amazon.com • Book Depository)
    • The classic tale of thirteen Dwarves and one Hobbit’s epic adventure to relieve a dragon of his treasure is timeless and should be re-read on a regular basis. Read it to your little ones before the movie is released in December.

 

Do you have any other recommendations of Dragon books to read?

 

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