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Forget Analysts And Experts, Just Read Pratchett

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January 21st, 2012

In 1786, the great Scottish poet Robert Burns wrote, “Oh wad some power the giftie gie us, To see ourselves as others see us! It wad frae monie a blunder free us, an’ foolish notion.” Someone did give us that gift, 60 years before Burns wrote “To A Louse” – Jonathan Swift in Gulliver’s Travels. Unless one has studied Gulliver’s Travels in school, it is just a fantasy tale of a voyage to strange lands. But in reality, it was a scathing indictment of contemporary British society, wrapped in a story that could, but did not necessarily, make people see the world they were living in.

Swift set the model for modern political exposé and satire. Before him it was a pretty straightforward field, exemplified by the Celtic bard and the court jester – make fun of the rich and powerful in a sufficiently public way that one didn’t get thrown in the dungeon. The subtlety of using non-humans to portray the foibles and failures of humanity has worked very well. Swift was the intellectual grandfather of Jules Verne, Rod Serling, Isaac Asimov, Ray Bradbury, Anne McCaffrey and the entire range of science fiction and fantasy writers of the past three centuries.

But few of those inheritors for Swift’s legacy have been as brilliant at it as British author Terry Pratchett.

Read the full article on the Letz Get Real website.

Snuff – Review by Moira de Swardt

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January 19th, 2012

Regular readers of Terry Pratchett’s Discworld fantasies will need no encouragement to buy this quirky whodunit.

For them it will be familiar territory and they will already be fans of Pratchett’s wonderful sense of humour and wacky thinking which make him such a masterful story-teller.

Snuff is that addictive (because of the nicotine) tobacco substance often sniffed by old ladies. It makes them sneeze. It also means “to extinguish” as in to snuff out a candle. In this extinguishing context it has the sinister overtones of death. To “snuff it” means “to die”, often before one would do so if it were left entirely to natural causes, as in “snuff movies”.

Read more on the Artslink.co.za website.

The Sir Terry Pratchett Reading Challenge 2012

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January 18th, 2012

Yes my fellow bookworms I have ‘ummed’ and ‘ahhed’ about this one long enough and have decided I should give it a go. The Sir Terry Pratchett Reading Challenge is hosted by Hannah on her lovely blog Once Upon A Time, and here is how Hannah describes her challenge:

The Sir Terry Pratchett Reading Challenge

‘I have been thinking about this challenge for a few months now and it seems that this is the perfect time to get it out there. You see, I need to read more Pratchett. I adore the man, I adore Discworld, yet everytime it comes up in conversation, “I’ve only read as far as Guards, Guards and I can’t even remember what happened, I definitely need to read more.” So I have been dutifully collecting Pratchett books when I’ve spotted them in the charity shop in the hopes that I’ll finally live up to that. But I haven’t. Thus the Pratchett reading challenge 2012 is born.’

Read more on The Bookworm Chronicles blog.

 

Terry Pratchett’s ‘Hogfather’ Review: A New Christmas Classic

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January 3rd, 2012

In a world that logically should not exist, a space turtle brings us a new Christmas movie. This isn’t your typical Christmas film, however. This one has Death himself in it. Grab a glass of brandy and a meat pie because you’re about to be transported to the Discworld.

This is “Hogfather,” a two-part BBC movie based off of Terry Pratchett’s Discworld novel of the same name. The story is that it’s Hogswatch night (Discworld’s equivalent to Christmas Eve) and somebody (rather, something) wants the Hogfather (Santa Claus) dead.

 

Read the full article here.

 

Entertained but not wowed by Discworld on stage- Grantham Journal

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December 6th, 2011

READING the prologue for Going Postal, I was promised “excitement, entertainment and lots of laughs” – and the Grantham Dramatic Society did deliver.

Although not wowed by their latest show at the Guildhall, I was certainly entertained, although it did take a while to get going. But when it did, it drew you in and the cast had me and the rest of the audience laughing away at times. I’ve reviewed a number of the society’s productions, and am always pleased to see some familiar faces who always entertain. One such face belongs to Chris Dakin, a regular leading man who plays Moist von Lipwig. He shows a real confidence on stage and his lines are always read in an easy manner which gives his character realism.

To read the full article visit www.granthamjournal.co.uk

Can it be true? Wyrd Sisters plays at the Walterdale

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December 5th, 2011

Photo by Rad Grandpa photography

You are at the Walterdale Playhouse on a cold and snowy Wednesday evening. Imagine three witches, assembling around a huge kettle: Magrat Garlick, the young naive one, Nanny Ogg, the middle aged goofy one and Granny Weatherwax, the old cynical one. Imagine the room turns dark once they murmur an important and very difficult spell. Lightning appears and a demon head pops out of that kettle: green, ugly looking, mischievous eyes, sharp tongue. He allows them three questions: ‘What is going on in the castle? What are Duke Felmet and his wife up to? What are their plans?

Read the full article at www.thesoundandnoise.com

Sir Terry’s mindful of his novel future – The Express

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December 4th, 2011

TERRY Pratchett leans across the dinner table and fixes me with a steely gaze.

“Would you have known I had Alzheimer’s Disease unless you’d been told?” I answer truthfully: “No,” but I think it was a rhetorical question.

He barely paused for breath before he’s off again, talking 19 to the dozen, any question prompting a torrent of considered, articulate, well-informed opinion peppered with facts and jokes and stream-of consciousness digressions that usually, eventually, relate in some form to the original question…

 

To read Charlotte Heathcote’s full article, visit Express.co.uk.