Snuff by Terry Pratchett
Review by Joshua S Hill
I feel that I could very well leave this review to my Twitter post:
Finished reading Terry Pratchett’s new book, Snuff. Utterly brilliant. We need a new rating system dedicated to him.
If I could, then I would, but Lee would get cranky and, really, I’ll take any opportunity I can get to extoll the virtues of Sir Terry Pratchett.
I had Snuff finished in just over a day from when it arrived. I took it slowly, because you don’t want to rush good things like Terry Pratchett. While there is an almost infinite amount of re-readability to Pratchett’s works, the first time is always special, and you want to savour it.
Yes, I promise, I’m still talking about books.
Pratchett once again delves into the world of His Grace, His Excellency, The Duke of Ankh; Commander Sir Samuel Vimes. Without a doubt, Vimes is my favourite character, and when I originally heard that the next book would be a Vimes book I was pretty excited.
But I was a little wary because the blurb pretty much told us he wouldn’t be hanging around Ankh-Morpork, as he would be on holiday with his wife, Sybil, and his son, Young Sam.
But I should never have worried, as Pratchett has once again provided us with a book that, in all honesty, leaves me unable to rate it very well. At this point, I can pretty much only rate Pratchett books against other Pratchett books.
Pratchett writes in a way that you just know he’s made sure every word and sentence is perfect, but without that stuffiness that comes from allowing a writer to continually edit his own work in the hope that he’ll make it perfect (ie, Patrick Rothfuss, George Lucas).
The underlying political and moral alignment of Pratchett is very obvious, but it never comes across as preachy. The lessons learned and the insights gained are ones that we can either take on board, or we already have.
I won’t re-tread ground in trying to summarise the book, when the blurb says all you need and doesn’t spoil anything;
"According to the writer of the best-selling crime novel ever to have been published in the city of Ankh-Morpork, it is a truth universally acknowledged that a policeman taking a holiday would barely have had time to open his suitcase before he finds his first corpse.
And Commander Sam Vimes of the Ankh-Morpork City Watch is on holiday in the pleasant and innocent countryside, but not for him a mere body in the wardrobe, but many, many bodies and an ancient crime more terrible than murder.
He is out of his jurisdiction, out of his depth, out of bacon sandwiches, occasionally snookered and occasionally out of his mind, but not out of guile. Where there is a crime there must be a finding, there must be a chase and there must be a punishment.
They say that in the end all sins are forgiven. But not quite all…"
If you’ve never picked up a Pratchett book, then why wait? Pick this up now! You will not regret it!
Unrateable (or, if you must, 10/10).
Karen from England
Couldn't agree more... Terry Pratchett is, quite honestly, in a different league to most fantasy writers, in that he can make you both laugh and think at the same time, and leaves you with something special after the book is finished - the feeling that your life, or at least that part of it you spend in your own head, has been enriched beyond measure. Deserves more than a 10, but if that's as far as the ratings go, then 10 it duly is.
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