Reply to post: incredibly good writer

Sir Terry remembered: Dickens' fire, Tolkien's imagination, and the wit of Wodehouse


incredibly good writer

I enjoy reading immensely. Especially Pratchett.

And I believe I'm very clever.

But while reading the Discworld series, I noticed some kind of unexpected development:

The first books read like very humorous fantasy novels, great for a bit of light escapism.

But some (not all) of the later books, as he grew in his craft of master storyteller, contain layers that I found difficult to penetrate and understand.

There are some of his books, maybe beginning with Small Gods, that shows that he imbued the world he perceived with meanings that are difficult to explain or to talk about. Yet during the whole book he managed to convey these meanings in a way that I usually understood. (after re-reading in some cases). It's like he wrote about things, in our real world, that most people probably don't even know exist, and that are difficult to explain in words.

Maybe that just means I haven't understood them very well :-) but here follows a list of what I personally *believe* he talks about:

Small Gods - religion (I understood, but what a wonderfully insightful book!)

Jingo - the difference between police and military

Hogfather - mythology (I think I understood after re-reading a few times. Completely blew my mind)

The Fifth Elephant - love (I feel like I'm missing a large part of what he's saying, this was the most difficult book for me)

Thud! - terrorism

many of the witches' books - duty, and the maintenance of a society

He just kept getting better and better!

And if you read them all, then it's a mixed bag of "easy" and "difficult" books, and maybe for you a completely different subset is easy or difficult.

It's like he was saying: "the Discworld, just like our world, is a complex mess. Deal with it, and be happy with it!"

POST COMMENT House rules

Not a member of The Register? Create a new account here.

  • Enter your comment

  • Add an icon

Anonymous cowards cannot choose their icon


Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2020