[LMB] OT: Terry Pratchett

Elizabeth Holden alzurite at gmail.com
Sun Sep 12 04:48:51 BST 2021


Janet said, in reference to where to start with the Terry Pratchett books:

> I was the one who asked, and I?m not confused; just happy that there are
multiple starting
> places.

We should maybe explain a little. Most of his books are about a place
called Discworld, a flat fantasy planet with numerous races, countries, and
types in it. (Except the ones that aren't; they're fun too, but not what
people tend to think of when they think of Terry Pratchett books.)

Within this world there are set pieces and recurring characters, so that
there are sub-threads and mini-series within the series. All set in
Discworld, but showing different people and themes. Within each of these
series there is a progression of characters and action and the sub-series
should be read in order if possible.  A few of them:

- Books about Rincewind and the Unseen University - a hierarchy of uppity
wizards. First book: The Colour of Magic.
- Death, who talks in CAPITAL LETTERS and appears one way or another in
almost all of the books; a purveyor of common sense. First book: Mort.
- The Witches, most notably Granny Weatherwax. First book: Equal Rites
- Sam Vimes and the CIty Watch, where Discworld meets the police
procedurals and the cops are a wild mix of magical/mythical beings. First
book: Guards! Guards!
- Three books about Moist Von Lipwig, one about the creation of the Post
Office (Going Postal) and one about the creation of the banks (Making
Money); then Raising Steam. (Railway)
- The story of Tiffany Aching, a girl from the Highlands with a knack for
helping  people and befriending witches and the Nac Mac Feebles, a clan of
opinionated Scots imps. First book: The Wee Free Men.

Other books are one-offs which describe the history and technological
growth of Discworld, like Pyramids, Moving Pictures (where Pratchett gets
to talk about the movie industry), Small Gods, The Truth, Monstrous
Regiment.

> Gwynne: I have to say, if I'm starting a series I like to read them in
internal
> chronology order. And I think some of the books would lose a little if you
> took them out of order.

Really, there's nothing wrong with order of publication, as long as you
remember that Pratchett didn't really hit his stride, thematically
speaking, till the third or fourth Discworld book.

namaste,
Elizabeth

Elizabeth Holden <azurite at azurite.ca>


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