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Guards! Guards! Here There Be Dragons And The Denizens Of Ankh Morpork Wish One Huge Firebreather Would Return From Whence It Came Long Believed Extinct, A Superb Specimen Of Draco Nobilis Noble Dragon For Those Who Don T Understand Italics Has Appeared In Discworld S Greatest City Not Only Does This Unwelcome Visitor Have A Nasty Habit Of Charbroiling Everything In Its Path, In Rather Short Order It Is Crowned King It Is A Noble Dragon, After All Meanwhile, Back At Unseen University, An Ancient And Long Forgotten Volume The Summoning Of Dragons Is Missing From The Library S Shelves To The Rescue Come Captain Vimes, Constable Carrot, And The Rest Of The Night Watch Who, Along With Other Brave Citizens, Risk Everything, Including A Good Roasting, To Dethrone The Flying Monarch And Restore Order To Ankh Morpork Before It S Burned To A Crisp A Rare Tale, Well Done As Only Terry Pratchett Can At the time of writing, Terry Pratchett passed away about a week ago Beside making me sad, the news also triggered a sudden urge to read a Discworld book which needed to be satisfied immediately I haven t read any Terry Pratchett books for years I have always liked them but there are just so many books in the world and you know how it is, one thing led to another and somehow they didn t lead back to Sir Terry In the meantime, I have been reading many inferior flavor of the month books like The Martian I have been doing myself a disservice really Guards Guardsis one of the most popular Discworld books and I have not read it, this makes it the ideal candidate for a reentry into this unique and wonderful series Anyway it is nice to be back in Ankh Morpork, the most chaotic city in fantasy fiction At the most basic level Guards Guardsis Pratchett s take on the police procedural, but his imagination is too immense to constrain the book to just a single genre parody so there is much to this book than just the City Watch, Ankh Morpork s feeble excuse for a police force The Watch mean are happily doing a crappy job, which basically involve ringing bells at certain times of the night to announce that all is well in the city It takes the arrival of an extremely honest and straight laced human orphan raised by dwarves to remind the Watchmen what they are supposed to be and a huge dragon summoned from another dimension burning up the citizens and half the city to spur them into action.Art by SharksDenOne reason I only read Terry Pratchett occasionally is that I personally prefer books where humour is a minor element of the story rather than placed at the front and centre After reading Guards GuardsI have to admit this is my misconception of what Pratchett was doing with the Discworld series after the first few straightforward fantasy parody books The humour takes centre stage but underneath not even far underneath Pratchett was using Discworld as a mirror to explore, lampoon and critique our world with its many ills and injustice Certainly Guards Guardsexplores the theme of the policemen s duty and honor against personal safety and interest, what makes a good cop and a bad cop so to speak He also skewers the masses tendency to blindly accept whoever has the biggest gun or fire breathing talent These and other serious issues are explored without ever missing a humorous beat The book is a laugh fest from beginning to end, I don t think there is a single page that did not make me at least chuckle.I actually laughed out loud several times, my favorite joke involves the phrase Bjorn Stronginthearm is my uncle which highlights the bizarreness of the British phrase Bob s your uncle Also the patrician s questioning of dragons penchant for sleeping on a huge pile of gold instead of a comfy mattress is brilliant Don t worry I have not spoiled the book for you, I am barely scratching the surface of the many ingenious satires, jokes and witticisms to be found in this book.Captain Vimes no idea who the artist is, sorry The characterization of the protagonists and antagonists is also very strong Captain Vimes is silly and funny yet flawed, sympathetic, honorable and extremely likable I am not surprised he one of Pratchett s most beloved characters The formidable Patrician Vetinari is another extremely vivid and lively creation, in a TV adaptation of another Discworld book he is perfectly portrayed by Charles Dance so you can imagine the dry wit and suavity of the man His method of escaping from captivity in a dungeon is pure evil genius Guards Guardsis effortlessly a five star book and if I may leave you with a quote from this book that works perfectly even out of contextThe reason that clich s become clich s is that they are the hammers and screwdrivers in the toolbox of communication The irony is that there is not one clich in this book, unless you count the ones that Pratchett turned on their heads.R.I.P Sir Terry, you were the best.Credit celticwrenNote Terry Pratchett s Discworld Might Be The Highest Form of Literature on the Planet by Brandon Sanderson What I love most about Pratchett s books is that under a thin layer of funny footnotes peppered pun heavy parody lies the core of deep seriousness rooted in the quite sobering understanding of the shallow pettiness of human mundanity fueled by jealousy, bile, spite, and closemindednessThere was a thoughtful pause in the conversation as the assembled Brethren mentally divided the universe into the deserving and the undeserving, and put themselves on the appropriate sideIn the end, the only thing that makes it possible to wake up in the morning is just a slight deviation from this depressing state of affairs that leads to the understanding and a bit of dignity and doing what s right even when that s not quite expected Because someone has to uphold what s right Because someone needs to swim against the current He shrugged They re just people, he said They re just doing what people do SirThis is one of my favorite Discworld books and one of the best starting points for the Discworld newbies It is the first book in the subcycle focusing on the City Watch of Ankh Morpork the Pearl of Cities on the Disc the book that really takes a look into the inner workings of this crowded, dirty and despicable and yet lovably tenacious urban metropolisAnkh Morpork Pearl of cities This is not a completely accurate description, of course it was not round and shiny but even its worst enemies would agree that if you had to liken Ankh Morpork to anything, then it might as well be a piece of rubbish covered with the diseased secretions of a dying molluscIn Pratchett s tradition of deconstructing the tropes this one has its kings and tyrants and secret societies and dragons and maidens and heroes and heirs with birthmarks and magical swords, as well as million to one chances except that things tend to not work out as planned And all of it is woven into a neat tight plot that carries us through the dry humor and slapstick and sad seriousness to the unexpected depth as you allow the cogs and wheels of your brain turn contemplating Pratchett s intentionsIf there was anything that depressed him than his own cynicism, it was that quite often it still wasn t as cynical as real lifeI am a Sam Vimes girl through and through And this book is our introduction to our cynical anti hero, uncompromising, grumpy and terrifyingly sober knurdknurd as in complete and utter opposite to drunk, beyond simple sobrietyAnkh Morpork copper with the unsettling tendency to ask uncomfortable questions when others would much rather he didn t This is the beginning of the Vimes we all know and love, the evolution from the down in the gutter pessimistic drunk brung low by a woman the city itself, that is to the equally pessimistic servant not of the King or the Patrician but the law, a thorn in the side of so many not so uncorrupt but quite respectably upstanding Ankh citizensThe city wasa, wasa, wasa wossname Thing Woman That s what it was Woman Roaring, ancient, centuries old Strung you along, let you fall in thingy, love, then kicked you inna, inna, thingy Thingy, in your mouth Tongue Tonsils TeethThat s what it, she, did She wasa thing, you know, lady dog Puppy Hen BitchAnd then you hated her and, and just when you thought you d got her, it, out of your whatever, then she opened her great booming rotten heart to you, caught you off bal, bal, bal, thing AnceYeah Thassit Never knew where where you stood Lay Only one thing you were sure of, you couldn t let her go Because, because she was yours, all you had, even in her guttersReduced to almost nothingness by the corruption in the city, spending his time in the gutter literally , laughed at by everyone except his two colleagues the thick but amiable Fred Colon and a disgrace to human race a.k.a Nobby Nobbs Vimes gets a bit of a wake up call when the Watch gets its newest recruit Lance Constable Carrot Ironfoundersson, a not too bright but earnest 6 foot 6 inches dwarfhe s adopted, okayarmed with a Book of Laws and Ordinances of Ankh Morpork and a decidedly non magical sword People who are rather than six feet tall and nearly as broad across the shoulders often have uneventful journeys People jump out at them from behind rocks then say things like, Oh Sorry I thought you were someone elseAnd when the city is facing danger, Vimes bit by bit begins to think about it as HIS city After all,Things like that shouldn t be allowed to happen Not in my cityAnd once Vimes sets his single minded nature to accomplish somethingoccasionally aided by the Librarian , who is a peanut loving orangutan, and the imposing figure of Lady Sybil Ramkin, who breeds swamp dragons in her spare timethere is little that can stop himThe three rules of the Librarians of Time and Space are 1 Silence 2 Books must be returned no later than the date last shown and 3 Do not interfere with the nature of causalityThe threat to Ankh Morpork is real and quite substantial view spoilerIt s a metaphor of human bloody existence, a dragon And if that wasn t bad enough, it s also a bloody great hot flying thinghide spoiler This is my favorite Discworld book.I submit that the best way to rate a Discworld book is with a smile meter As you read, imagine that there is a meter whose arrow jumps when you smile, moves further right when you chuckle and spikes into the red eleven when you laugh out loud.Pratchett s 1989 Discworld novel his 8th in the series and 1st of the City Watch sub series made me smile all the way through the book, chuckle frequently and laugh out loud two or three times.Set in Ankh Morpork inspired by Fritz Leiber s Lankhmar the City Watch is composed of those night watchmen who call out at midnight that All s well and who would not want to catch anyone or run after someone too fast to avoid ruining the evening with an arrest That is until six foot six dwarf foundling Carrot joins the force as a lance constable.This novel also features dragons, described as only Sir Terry could Long thought extinct, the draco nobilis was just somewhere else until a group of hooded and cowled miscreants steal a book from the Library and YES the left turn Clyde Orangutan Librarian is featured perhaps my second favorite Discworld character and summon one back to Ankh Morpork Things do not go as planned and the rest is Pratchett magic.As my esteemed reviewer colleague Nataliya noted in her excellent review, the best part of Pratchett s writing is that he depicts realistic human failings in a comic setting that softens the blow of the all too real criticism in a playful way The Discworld is a lot of fun but it is also a comedic examination of humanity and civilization and it takes a master of Pratchett s genius talent to pull it off successfully.A MUST read for Discword fans and would actually be a great introduction to the series for any reader 2019 I ve read them all and this still my favorite. Reading Terry Pratchett s Guards Guards was a joy for me I don t know why it took me so long to read a Discworld book, I m a bit ashamed I am a sucker for English humor, always have been The good news is that I now have 40 Discworld books to read Honest reveal I think I resisted because people said he was better than Douglas Adams and that rubbed me the wrong way My view after reading one book, they are clearly in the same class, and while I still like Adams better that might be because I m a bigger Science Fiction fan than Fantasy In any case, it doesn t matter, both are hilarious and talented They both have layered humor and sneak in some wonderful insights on life.Pratchett dedicated this book to Palace City Guards Patrols, noting that no one ever asks them if they want to rush into a room, one at a time to attack the hero It s this trope that the story is build upon It s the eighth book in the Discworld series and was published in 1989 Pratchett deftly takes on all sorts of humor sarcasm, burlesque, hyperbolic, juvenile, dark, etc., etc He pokes at the Fantasy genre, breaks writing walls, and displays crafty, crafty wit Like Adams, it s largely non stop through the entire story, but somehow the story still moves along with great pace There are quotable quotes on nearly every page But I didn t just enjoy the humor, I enjoyed the fun story, and I enjoyed Pratchett s musing on evil, government, and life, in general The only thing Pratchett keeps sacred is books and libraries, all else is fair game for biting sarcasm I think you at least need to be a passing fantasy reader to appreciate his books, and you must be tolerant of some occasional silliness, but if you pass those two simple hurdles, I can t imagine not enjoying this book A fun and entertaining romp through a twisted fantasy world that will make you laugh, but stealthily remind you of the underdog s plight against the ridiculous rules of the, well, ruling class Ahem. De los mejores libros que he le do este a o. Dragons and kings and cross dressing night watch What can go wrong Meet Terry Pratchett, who can turn anything, and I mean, anything, on its head On this re read, what I remember to be a less funny book than the Watch novels that came after it suddenly becomes a rich and nostalgic ride including dwarf bread, or in this case, CAKE Decent, law abiding folk versus the deeply corrupt populace And don t just ask Mr Cut Me Own Throat He s suspicious.I love all the tropes and the way Pratchett deals with them The whole novel is tongue in cheek and it s a slight bit delightful IMHO than all the rest of the novels that came before it Indeed, it s this one that sets the tone for all the rest And so the transformation of Ankh Morpork commences Upping this by a star. Noble dragons Q Noble dragons don t have friends The nearest they can get to the idea is an enemy who is still alive c How To Read Terry Pratchett s Discworld Novels1 Skip the first two books in the series This is crucial If you read these first, you will be rightly annoyed by their just barely okayness, and spend the rest of your life muttering about how overrated he is Terry Pratchett wrote these two books Then all of a sudden he started writing really, really well I don t know what happened Maybe he sold his soul My own theory is that his long suffering wife waited as patiently as she could for him to pull himself together as a writer and then, after she proofread his second novel, something in her snapped and she thwapped him in the head with the book in question You re better than this, damn it she shouted Now get in there and write something goodAnd he did.2 Start with the first book in one of the subseries The Discworld books all take place on the same planet, but they involve different groups of people The witches my favorites The Night Watch my also favorites Death granted, he s not a group, but he does have a family The wizardsOkay, there are standalones, like Small Gods And in a way, all the Discworld books are standalones Except for the first two, because the first one ends on a cliffhanger Like I said, skip them until you ve read some of the really good ones, and then brace yourself and read them purely for continuity purposes I started with the 23rd book in the series, Carpe Jugulum, and was perfectly fine, other than a tendency to preach the gospel of Discworld Is Flippin Amazing And You Have To Read These Books, which I m trying to get under control.But it s a lot of fun to follow the threads To start, for instance, with Equal Rites, which introduces you to both the witches and the wizards This isn t Hogwarts, and those most definitely are not the same thing in Discworld Then you can go on to Wyrd Sisters and Witches Abroad, and fall absolutely in love with Granny Weatherwax and Nanny Ogg I fully intend to be Granny Weatherwax when I grow up, right down to the goat farm and the ability to terrify people just by saying Good morning Watch this space Or you can start with Guards Guards , and be introduced to the men of the Night Watch Just bear in mind that I m first in line if Captain Vimes becomes available, so keep your inevitable crush on him to yourself.I posted approximately 17,000 updates while I reread this book, all quotable quotes That s not even all the bits I wanted to post, but Goodreads has a strict word count limit on updates because Goodreads h a t e s m e knows how I get.You can get a perfectly good sense of whether or not you ll enjoy Guards Guardsby perusing said updates You will enjoy it if you already enjoy fantasy you will very likely enjoy it even if you don t generally enjoy fantasy, because the humor, characterization, and dialogue are ridiculously good.Have a good time And remember hands off Vimes He s mine. First of all, my site has the videos that go with this here s the lite version My Terry Pratchett Experience is remarkably similar to my Month Python Experience Fun and funny, but really best done in small doses Say, 15 minute doses if I m watching, longer if I m reading It turns out, I haven t read Guards Guards before, although I thought I had Quite possibly, it is because I had not Quite possibly, it s because I had and forgot, but you d think I d remember the dragons For future reference, it s the one where the adopted dwarf Carrot goes to the big city of Ankh Morpork and joins the Night Watch in hopes of Becoming a Man Night Watch captain Sam Vines spends most of his days and nights in an alcoholic stupor, but the antics of Carrot in Enforcing Law and Order soon force Vines into involvement Meanwhile, a secret society the Elucidated Bethren of the Ebon Night has decided to summon a dragon, intending on overthrowing the Patrician Lord Vetinari and replacing him with an old fashioned monarchy Some of the Brothers are quite sure they are being held down and need a monarchy to make things right I get oppressed all the time, said Brother Doorkeeper Mister Critchley, where I work, he oppresses me morning, noon and night, shouting at me and everything And the woman in the vegetable shop, she oppresses me all the time Like Monty Python, Pratchett specializes in absurdity, in mocking our perceptions, definitions and expectation Clever and funny a little bit of social commentary with an edge, both are particularly skilled in word games But you re my kind, said Carrot desperately In a manner of speaking, yes, said his father In another manner of speaking, which is a rather precise and accurate manner of speaking, no Which puts me in mind of another famous sketch based on, you know, meaning and such I wish to complain about this parrot I purchased not half an hour ago from this very boutique What s wrong with it It s dead No, no it s resting It is funny, but when it s all clever wordplay mocking villains in their thick dark cowls, and the general populace for being sheep, and Carrot for being So Earnest, and Lady Sybil for being such a hearty, large Englishwoman, and the only one who is really clever is the Patrician well, it s a bit hard to empathize And honestly, rather tiring.Then there s the Librarian, an orangutan who runs the greatest library in the world He s trying to make Constable Carrot understand a serious crime has been committed Ook A book has been taken A book has been taken You summoned the Watch, Carrot drew himself up proudly, because someone s taken a book You think that s worse than murder The librarian gave him the kind of look other people would reserve for people who said things like, What s so bad about genocide Which pretty much reminds me of the Albatross sketch Both use the device of the straight man for maximum silliness The Albatross at Intermission At the end of the day, certainly fun There s certainly messages and social commentary that elevate it above simple romps, but it tends to be applied with heavy emphasis Like Python, best enjoyed in short sketches Don t worry, I ll show myself out.On the way to the Ministry of Silly Walks


About the Author: Terry Pratchett

Born Terence David John Pratchett, Sir Terry Pratchett sold his first story when he was thirteen, which earned him enough money to buy a second hand typewriter His first novel, a humorous fantasy entitled The Carpet People, appeared in 1971 from the publisher Colin Smythe Terry worked for many years as a journalist and press officer, writing in his spare time and publishing a number of novels, i


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