Friday, 27 April 2012

Finished Reading - Snuff by Terry Pratchett

39th book into his Discworld series and Sir Terry is still going strong.

His Grace Commander Sir Samuel Vimes of the Anhk-Morpork City Watch has been dragged on a holiday to the country estate of his wife Lady Sybil and he's really missing the city. He doesn't like the countryside, can't get on with its folk and they all seem to know something that they don't want him to know about. Soon enough he finds himself investigating a brutal murder and unearths some very, very bad things that have been going on...

I love all the Vimes and City Watch stories, my favourite being Night Watch, but I like the whole series. If you're not acquainted with Disworld, it is a flat planet carried on the backs of four elephants who are on the back of a giant cosmic turtle. It's a place strangely similar to our own but there the humans rub shoulders with all the denizens of the fantasy/science fiction realm.

I started reading the Discworld stories in my mid-teens after going to an open air production of Lords and Ladies for a friend's birthday party. I love the mad-cap whirlwind story telling and the often laugh out loud humour: the quickfire dialogue, clever wordplay, in-jokes and astute observations, satire and parodies.

It does seem that Sir Terry has become more serious in his recent books: the raw, mad energy of the earliest stories reigned in, the visual gags toned down, but the sharp humour is still there. And there has always been a moral thread in his tales; he's talked about Death, social injustice and ethics many times before.

Snuff isn't one of the strongest stories, there are some loose threads in the subplots, but it's a good romp none the less. It's always fun to revisit this world that is so well imagined now after nearly 30 years, to see old characters and meet new ones. I'm looking forward to the next adventure!

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