Newbie to Discworld... my thoughts so far.

shadow9d9

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My friend recommended discworld to me. I read his first suggestion: Guards Guards. I found the book intelligent and witty, and only found minor fault in the relatively unsatisfying final part of the book. My next book was Mort, which I enjoyed. I bought the entire series on ebay/and in stores.

Then I decided to read the rest of the books in order of publication. I read every book up to completion, enjoying all but the 3rd book, Equal Rights, and found the first witches book to be a tad boring.

The next troublesome book was Small Gods. I don't follow any religion, so it wasn't that I was offended. In fact, I agreed with the commentary. I just found the pace to be plodding and the characters boring. I had to stop reading 1/2-2/3 in. I found the 2nd witches book to be much better than the first.

My next troublesome book was Lords and Ladies. I don't think the problem was with the book itself, but just that fact that it was the 3rd book with them in it within a short period of time bookwise. I never cared for witches in general.. they just don't interest me.. and while their interaction is humorous.. I just found it repetitive, probably because it was the 3rd witch book in 6 books or so. I did not have similar problems with the Rincewind books.

I decided to take a break from Discworld for a few months, as I hate finding a book too boring to finish. I also decided that maybe Discworld really wasn't for me. I generally prefer serious books, so I tackled a whole bunch of them. Fast forward a few months, I figured I'd give the next book in the series a try, which is the second Night Watch Book, Men in Arms. After 2 days I am up to page 260 and am enjoying the book thoroughly.

I plan to sporadically continue the books in order of publication, perhaps skipping the witch books for the time being.

Anyone else have similar/different thoughts?

Btw, I keep a log of the books I've read and rate each one on a scale of 1 to 5(best) when I am done with them. Here is my discworld list:

A Colour of Magic- 3.1
A Light Fantastic- 3.2
Equal Rites- 2.9
Mort -3.75
Sourcery- 3.8
Wyrd Sisters- 3.4
Pyramids- 3.7
Eric- 3.5
Guards! Guards! -4
Moving Pictures- 3.4
Reaper Man- 4.0
Witches abroad- 4.25
Small Gods- 1
 

pyan

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Stick with them, shadow - there is a definite uplift in style as you go through the series, and at the current end, the maturing of the writing is very noticeable.:)
There are some comparative failures in the series - I don't like Carpe Jugulam for one - but they make up one of the the best comedy fantasy series ever, IMHO.
 

Nesacat

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Welcome to the Discworld, shadow. It's the kind of place that will grow on you as you find your way around it and learn it's quirks.

You might find yourself wanting to stay they for longer periods as time goes along.

Hmmmm ... I didn't quite like Carpe Jugulum either come to think of it.
 

pyan

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Hmmmm ... I didn't quite like Carpe Jugulum either come to think of it.
Yeah - struck me as being just a re-write of Lords and Ladies, just changing the protagonists, Cat.
 

HoopyFrood

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I admit that when I first started reading the Discworld novels, I found the humour a bit too much initially...like it was forced. But I ploughed on regardless and now I truly am a fan! I especially love the Rincewind books. I'm yet to dabble in the Watch books but I've been assured by various people that I'll enjoy them!
 

Lenny

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I really liked Carpe Jugulum... saying that, though, there isn't a single one that I haven't really liked. :p

And I started with Wyrd Sister, then Witches Abroad, then Wyrd Sisters again... and then Colour of Magic through to the end of the series.
 

Lenny

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You forgot the "n". :p

Is it because it bears no relation to any of the other Discworld novels? Like Small Gods and Pyramids?
 

Allegra

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Welcome to another pTerry fan! If you haven't, sooner or later you will find the discworld a jolly comfy stable retreat.:)
 

Joel007

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since his books often parody other books, the similarities might not always grasp your attention. After all, as pTerry said, he aims to write so that if you don't get the joke, you won't even notice one has been made.
 

Sibeling

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Shadow9d9, you lucky person!! Discovering Pratchett's books is a great experience - Discworld is the best. :)
 

justhinking

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Just a thought here but Discworld is a very broad setting and within that everyone is bound to have favourite books or least favoured ones. Further since Discworld novels are often analogues to either particular plays/stories/folklore tales/generic types of story it also depends alot on what other things you've read and enjoyed as to what you'll most enjoy and identify with in the Discworld series. Personally I like the watch series, particularly Nightwatch, and Rincewinds books. The witches aren't bad but those books seem more repetitive than the rest - to be fair though I think part of the reason for that is that initially Pratchett was writing so that you could pick up any of the books and still relate to it without having read those before that, I think I remember him writing something in the preface to Lord's and Ladies about having had to make an adjustment given the serial nature of the witches books and I think that shows in some of the comedic material being reused. Personally I like the fact that Pratchett seems to have adjusted to using subtler humor that is worked more into the text in his later works (earlier works seem to often have the humor depart from the story which can work but can also be distracting) and switched to writing slightly darker fantasy (particularly evident in Nightwatch I thought).
 

alicebandassassin

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i have to say i like pratchet but then i like to be amused in all ways and i like the fact there are layers of humor and great carectors that grow with the books and hardley ever disapoint you. i dont mind the detached humor as i think of those smiles as free extras.
 

Ice fyre

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Black will do till they invent a darker colour. U
Now I think I'm in a minority here but I really liked Small Gods although I think Pyramids is my fave closley followed by guards guards.

Pratchet's strength I feel is his ability to observe the human condition and replay it through the medium of fantasy.

Ummm, that sounds a bit snobby, but lets face it we have all met the people he writes about. They are all exagerated forms of friends, family and that wierd fella who swears at himself going home in the train at night. Well on my train at least.:)
 

BigBadBob141

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The Librarian is one of my favourite characters.
But I really love the idea of L-Space.
I have so many books in one of the bedrooms I'm surprised it hasn't imploded and created a wormhole leading to other collections & libraries.
 

BigBadBob141

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REF: Ice fyre.
Yes, I enjoyed Pyramids, I liked the scene where all his mummified ancesters help him climb to the top.Also the bit about having places on the bridge where you can drop rocks on the sacred crocodiles.
 

The Big Peat

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While somewhat doubting any of the people who originally posted in this will see it...

Reading the Discworlds in order without pause is something I would heavily recommend not doing. They were not intended to be that way. They cover a wide range of styles and influences; it goes without saying people will like some of them and not the others. Personally the only Rincewind book I'll read again for pleasure is Interesting Times.

Read them as their own respective series in the Discworld whole. Read the bits you like and not the others. And don't try to mainline 40-odd books in one go.

Also, liking Small Gods never puts you in a minority.
 
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