Thursday, August 7, 2008

Guards! Guards!

Title: Guards! Guards!
Author: Terry Pratchett

What it's about: In Ankh-Morpork, someone is plotting to oust the city's ruler, Lord Vetinari, and replace him with a king. This plan involves a shiny sword that looks magical, a dragon to be summoned for vanquishing, and the common knowledge that there may be a descendant of Ankh-Morpork's old kings hanging around somewhere. Meanwhile, the arrival of Constable Carrot has roused the city's somewhat incompetent Night Watch, headed by Captain Sam Vimes, out of its usual stupor. When the dragon starts incinerating citizens, Vimes and his Watchmen get on the case. It's a million-to-one chance, but they just might get to the bottom of things and save the city.

What I thought: Terry Pratchett's humor is incomparable. Some jokes are subtle, some are more overt, but all of them are very, very funny. He turns fantasy stereotypes upsidedown without losing the soul of the story. Pratchett also manages to put in some more serious thinking points about human nature without beating you over the head with them. The story itself is long and intricately put together, with all the pieces coming together for a very satisfying conclusion. This is the first book of the City Watch series, and it only gets better from here on out.

Overall: This is a must-read for, well, anyone.

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