Fantasy Checklist Challenge: Comic Fantasy, All Pratchett

~posted by David H.

If there has ever been a king of comic fantasy, then that crown was worn by the late Terry Pratchett. And in that crown, the shining jewel is the Discworld series. Published in 37 different languages with over 80 million books sold, Pratchett is second only to J.K. Rowling as the best-selling British author to date. And with forty novels published, and a forty-first to be published shortly, it’s one of the longest series of fantasy novels ever. Which gives new readers a bit of a problem: Where do you start?

The Color of Magic in the SPL catalogWhile each Discworld novel is a self-contained story, beginning and ending in that book, many follow a set of story arcs, each featuring a distinct group of characters. The first two novels, The Colour of Magic & The Light Fantastic, follow the adventures of the worst wizard on the Disc: Rincewind. Barely tolerated by his colleagues at Unseen University, the cowardly Rincewind finds himself dragged into adventures across the land, managing to survive while somehow saving the world in the process. The series includes several Rincewind adventures, with Interesting Times & The Last Continent among the best. Continue reading “Fantasy Checklist Challenge: Comic Fantasy, All Pratchett”

Little people up to no good (part 2): the modern tiny person

Were you thrilled when Arrietty came out, but now want new tiny adventures? Well, look no further!

The Bromeliad trilogy by Terry Pratchett (1989)

Bromeliad TrilogyI’ve tried very hard to stick to tiny people who are more people than fairy, and of all of Pratchett’s tiny people, the Nomes of the Bromeliad best meet that criteria. (We’re not even getting into the microscopic Carpet People here). The four-inch-high Nomes inhabit the various ecological zones of a department store and find a way to survive when the store comes under threat. Think of the possibilities for a tiny person in a department store! What I love about Pratchett (aside from the uncontrollable giggling) is that all of his tiny characters seem to gravitate towards tribal societies, which makes for fascinating reading. Continue reading “Little people up to no good (part 2): the modern tiny person”

Paralyzed by anticipation

The book is sitting on my bedside table.  Its been there, unopened, for two weeks already. I pick it up every evening. It mesmerizes me. And it paralyzes me.

For my entire adult life I’ve been reading Terry Pratchett.  His amazingly inventive sardonic wit has caused me endless embarrassment as I laughed out loud in restaurants, on planes/trains/buses and once while walking down the street.  Jingo was the first book I thought of immediately after 9/11.  And my daughter has literally grown up with Tiffany Aching.

So why is I Shall Wear Midnight causing me such distress?  Pratchett has a rare form of early Alzheimer’s. I don’t know if he will ever write another book. Perhaps I will never again have the wonderful thrill of opening a new book by my favorite author. So the book sits unopened. And messes with my mind.