Nation

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Postby Tonyblack » Tue Dec 30, 2008 4:14 pm

chris.ph wrote:got 2b cmot tours :lol:


Cut Me Own Top Off? :lol:
"Goodness is about what you do. Not what you pray to."
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Postby hgtodd » Tue Dec 30, 2008 8:53 pm

chris.ph wrote:got 2b cmot tours :lol:


Cut Me Own Top Off?

:D Very good. I can see that I am going to have to read all TP's books again to keep up with this witty banter. Good New Year to you all when it comes. luv Hx
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Postby poohbcarrot » Wed Dec 31, 2008 4:44 pm

Hi everyone and a Happy New Year to you all.

I got in to TP when Pyramids came out and have been a fan ever since. Like I'm sure you all do, I read each and every book again and again.

Having just finished Nation, I'd like to make a couple of comments about it.

At first I was shocked when I realised it wasn't a Discworld story, but I really enjoyed it

It seemed to me to be a cross between "The God Delusion" and "Fingerprints of the Gods". I found it very anti-religion (more so than usual) and in particular it seemed to be attacking all the crazy "Creationists".

What do you all think?
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Postby princesspurplehippy » Fri Jan 02, 2009 9:09 pm

every year I get the latest Pratchett book for Xmas from my mum and have normally finished it by Boxing Day. This year I didnt see my mum, and more importantly didnt get my new book, til New Years Eve so I am a bit later than normal finishing it.

It was a great book, not laugh out loud funny like a few of his books but still a great read and the quality that I have come to expect from Mr, oops sorry Sir Terry Pratchett
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Postby Tonyblack » Fri Jan 02, 2009 9:14 pm

Glad you liked it. It's a very thoughtful book that explores some interesting consepts. :)
"Goodness is about what you do. Not what you pray to."
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Postby princesspurplehippy » Fri Jan 02, 2009 9:27 pm

Tonyblack wrote:Glad you liked it. It's a very thoughtful book that explores some interesting consepts. :)


I think it says a lot about his talent that his books can range from silly to quite deep and inciteful.

I have a lot of friends who say they don't really like his books cos all they know about is the funny fantasy books, I tell them that he can write some really meaningful books.

My boyfriend doesnt like his books til I lent him Good Omens and I was worried as he is a fan of the Omen film but he really enjoyed it. I don't think he will ever be a huge fan like me but I think you can find a Pratchett book for everyone
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Postby Tonyblack » Fri Jan 02, 2009 9:36 pm

Terry's books are deceptive. There's usually a funny fantasy story on the surface but when you scratch that surface you find that there's almost always something deeper to them.

Terry writes about humanity and the way people react. It doesn't matter if those 'people' are trolls, dwarfs, vampires or wee free men, they are all types of humans.

Let's take Nation for example. the story seems fairly simple, but it's about how some people react to an 'act of god'. When something like that happens - everyone you know and all that you believed is destroyed, can you go on believing in the god that destroyed it all?

Terry's writing has been likened to such people as Jonathon Swift and Mark Twain. Both of those writers have been dismissed by some as 'children's writers' or 'fantasy' writers, but they are actually writing about humanity and they stuff they see going on through the medium of satire.

Terry's books will still be read in two hundred years time and people will still recognise what he is writing about. :wink:
"Goodness is about what you do. Not what you pray to."
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Postby Vena Ravenhaired » Thu Jan 15, 2009 1:26 am

I enjoyed Nation, although it is set on another alternate Earth, it gently pokes fun at Victorian attitudes to Empire and all it's little foibles.

It took me two readings to get it though.

Cheers, Vena
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Postby Ogg » Fri Jan 23, 2009 10:35 pm

Imho 'Nation' is as good as anything TP has ever written. I was engrossed from the very beginning and like others read it in one caffeine fueled evening session. I think I've read it at least five times now but I'm sad like that. Hard to put my finger on redeeming factor, just the whole feel of the plot, characters and the thinking required on our part...perfect.
I must add that when Daphne's father finally gave his mother the talking to she deserved, what was it? ...sharp tongued harridan with the manners of a fox...the island might speak to you as it did me..." sniff.
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Postby jirzinek » Tue Mar 03, 2009 10:52 pm

Hi! I'm translating Nation into Polish and I wonder if you could help me with a few queries:

1) What do the acronyms M.R.H and F.R.A stand for (It's in "Birds of the Great Southern Pelagic Ocean by H.J. Hookwarm, MRH, FRA...) p.103

2) Why is Daphne against naming the newborn child Twinkle? p. 150

3) In the extract describing moments before the disaster struck: "And now it hit Mau, knocking him flat on the sand. His head was trying to explode. It was worse even than that time when he'd played the stone game and had hung on too long" what's this reference to the stone game about? p. 17

I was also wondering about that tree-climbing octopus having a BEAK and the use of spray cans in the nineteenth century setting...

Thank you!
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Postby Tonyblack » Wed Mar 04, 2009 8:25 am

jirzinek wrote:Hi! I'm translating Nation into Polish and I wonder if you could help me with a few queries:

1) What do the acronyms M.R.H and F.R.A stand for (It's in "Birds of the Great Southern Pelagic Ocean by H.J. Hookwarm, MRH, FRA...) p.103

2) Why is Daphne against naming the newborn child Twinkle? p. 150

3) In the extract describing moments before the disaster struck: "And now it hit Mau, knocking him flat on the sand. His head was trying to explode. It was worse even than that time when he'd played the stone game and had hung on too long" what's this reference to the stone game about? p. 17

I was also wondering about that tree-climbing octopus having a BEAK and the use of spray cans in the nineteenth century setting...

Thank you!


Hi there jirzinek and welcome. :)

I think the two acronyms are made up. They look vaguely like they might be Member of the Royal something and perhaps Fellow of the Royal something - but those acronyms don't actually exist as far as I can tell.

Not sure about "Twinkle" apart from it being a dumb name. I suspect this refers to the saying "When you were just a twinkle in your father's eye." In other words just before you were conceived and your father was just thinking about having sex with your mother. But I could be wrong. :)

I think the "Stone Game" is just Terry asking us to imagine a game that was so rough that it would make you feel like you'd just been washed up in a tidal wave. We are hearing (so to speak) Mau's thoughts and we don't know everything that Mau knows.
Octopus do have beaks as you can see in this Wiki article


I hope that helps. :)
"Goodness is about what you do. Not what you pray to."
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Postby jirzinek » Wed Mar 04, 2009 8:42 am

Thank you, Tonyblack, that did help a lot!

And another thing, if you are so kind. There's a story of a butler called Biggleswick. The one who got drunk and was fired by Grandmother. Does the name Biggleswick have any associations?
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Postby Tonyblack » Wed Mar 04, 2009 9:02 am

jirzinek wrote:Thank you, Tonyblack, that did help a lot!

And another thing, if you are so kind. There's a story of a butler called Biggleswick. The one who got drunk and was fired by Grandmother. Does the name Biggleswick have any associations?
I don't think so. It's the sort of name that Charles Dickens might have used for a character and therefore it give the book that sort of Victorian feel. Dickens used all sorts of odd names such as Chuzzlewit and Fezziwig - I just think Terry was doing more of the same. :)

Interestingly, there is a company in Britain that make "Hygiene & Disposable Products" called Biggleswick and of course it's not that disimilar to Bigglesworth (Biggles) the fictional WW1 pilot created by W.E. Johns.
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Postby Dotsie » Wed Mar 04, 2009 3:53 pm

Tony has already been extremely helpful, but I'll just add that although it's a 19th century setting, we do find out that it's a parallel universe. So anything's allowed (although I can't actually remember the spray cans anyway!).

Good luck with your translation :wink:
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Postby jirzinek » Wed Mar 04, 2009 4:27 pm

Thank you again! You are a lovely lot :)

Spray cans were mentioned right there in the very first chapter (for "spitting" the disinfectant on Cutty Wren).

And if there is something else a translator of Nation should know, tell me :)
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