Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Snuff (A Discworld Novel), by Terry Pratchett (author), Tony Robinson (narrator)

Corgi Books, ISBN 9780552166751, June 2012

I listened to the unabridged audiobook edition of this. However, I am linking to the paperback because Amazon won't permit me to link to the correct audio edition.

Sam Vimes, Commander of the Watch of the city of Anhk-Morpork, is not happy. In fact, he's deeply, deeply unhappy. He's about to undergo a terrible ordeal, due to a terrible betrayal by his beloved wife, Lady Sybil.

He's going on vacation. To the country. To Lady Sybil's family lands, which he now owns.

The sounds are the wrong kinds of sounds--animal calls! Rustling branches! There's a river, but you can eat the fish you catch in it. It goes by the name of Old Treachery. There are cows.

There's also a tavern called The Goblin's Head, run by a retired cop, a terribly earnest young man who is the local constable, a blacksmith who rages with idealistic passion against the aristocracy (views Sam, His Grace the Duke of Ankh, is inclined to share), a local board of magistrates which seems to be self-appointed and unacquainted with the law, and some very fishy goings-on with regard to the local goblin population.

It will surprise no one that Sam finds his vacation becoming something of a busman's holiday, or that he likes it better that way.

While Lady Sybil entertains, and young Sam discovers the joys of the countryside (at six, the new and wonderful varieties of poo are a revelation and a delight), Vimes and his gentleman's gentleman, Wiggins, along with the earnest young local constable, learn more and more about the misdeeds of the local Board of Magistrates, the dangers of Old Treachery, and the intricacies of local goblin culture.

This isn't Pratchett at the top of his form, but that still leaves this a better book than many others out there.  Well worth reading for both its fun and its thoughtfulness.

Sir Terry discusses Snuff:

I borrowed this book from a friend.

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