This is the first novel in Terry Pratchett’s Discworld series. All of these stories take place in a strange fantasy world on a giant disc on the back of four giant elephants which are on the back of a giant space turtle named Great A’Tuin.
The story follows two people, one named Rincewind and the other Twoflower, as they travel across the Discworld. Rincewind is a drop-out from the Unseen University who has one ancient and extremely powerful spell trapped in his head, but, due to this, cannot do any other magic. Twoflower is an optimistic (and potentially naive) tourist who travels with a savage living trunk called The Luggage which has a mind of its own, though is loyal to its master. There’s not too much story to it other than the pair of them going from one hilarious and dangerous situation to the next. What makes it enjoyable is the comedy and the characters (I find Twoflower and his Luggage especially loveable.)
During the course of the novel, many works of fantasy are lampooned; there’s quite a funny scene with the gods playing dice which is quite a good send up of Dungeons and Dragons. Though my favourite parody in the book has to be the time the pair of them face Bel-Shamharoth in an ancient temple in what is a clear poke at the stories of H. P. Lovecraft. Having said that, don’t feel you won’t be able to enjoy this novel if you don’t have a comprehensive knowledge of fantasy, if you barely know any fantasy it’ll just be lots of funny things that happen, if you know a lot of fantasy you’ll smile at all the references you get.
On the whole, while this book is a good read, there isn’t all that much to it. The biggest downside is its lack of much overall plot. As I said, the characters are lovely and you’ll often find parts very funny indeed, but if you’re looking for a deep, engrossing storyline, this isn’t the place to go.
(I do not own the copyright of the cover image.)