Discworld Readathon Month 8 – Guards! Guards!

Okay, sure, I still haven’t put up a review for Wyrd Sisters. And sure, I’m still only halfway through Pyramids. But I’m actually putting up an announcement post at the start of the month for once, and you know what? I’m pretty dang proud of that. Baby steps, folks. Bb:D

And this month we’re tackling Guards! Guards! which I’m super excited about because we get to meet the Night Watch for the first time and I’ve heard incredible things about them. Especially Sam Vimes who is probably the one character I knew most about coming into this series because a blog I follow on Tumblr is really into Discworld but they only ever post fanfic/fanart shipping Vimes and Havelock Vetinari.

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For you newcomers, this is a monthly Discworld Readathon that Nicole @ Bookworm Drinketh and I are hosting! We read through one Discworld book per month and post up a review at the last Monday of that month (give or take…a month).

Give a holler down in the comments to join us in our disorganized glory!

Reviews for Guards! Guards! will be posting on February 25th!

Update (I’m Back!) and Discworld Month 6 (Better Late than Never…?)

Happy Holidays, everyone! I’m back from my unannounced hiatus! Incidentally, I’m a broken record.

November and December are generally not great months for me (one of the million things they don’t tell you as a kid is how the holidays can go from the Most Wonderful Time of the Year to Time of Dread as you grow older), and this time was no exception. And then some. Bad mental health stuff and hospitals, basically.

I’m probably turning into one of those characters in SFF series who spend half of their screen/page time waking up in hospital beds and being like, “Hey doc, nice to see you again” and “We should really stop meeting like this.” Well, minus a cool sword and a world to save.

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As for Discworld, we’re now six months into the Discworld Readathon started by me and Nicole (the Bookworm Drinketh).

This month’s book is (was?) Wyrd Sisters and if this is the first time you’re hearing about it, you have two whole days to get to it. Pfft that’s totally feasible, right? :DD

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Arbitrary deadlines aside, if you want to join now then go for it. Leave me a comment, enjoy Sir Terry’s brilliant imagination, and post your review whenever.

And a thousand apologies to Nicole and the other participating bloggers for the radio silence. I’ll definitely try to get to the book by the end of next week.

I also have a backlog of posts I need to publish, a collab project that I’m super excited to unveil (hopefully sometime in January), and need to figure out how I’m supposed to write reviews for books I read over a month ago. So look out for those!

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Do tell me how your month has been, what interesting books you’ve picked up, etc, etc. Happy reading!

Discworld Readathon Month 5 – Sourcery

Hey all! So some not-great things came up and my blogging/reading has suffered as a result (which is why it’s taking me forever to get to comments). More about that in my wrap-up, but in the meantime, let’s get to Discworld!

We’re now 5 months into the Discworld Readathon that Nicole and I started up and it honestly feels like we’ve been doing this for years.

For those who don’t know, our goal is to read one Discworld book per month (chronologically, despite how much we may want to skip around. And I really want to skip to the next Death book now) and post a review on the last Monday of said month.

This month we’ll be tackling SOURCERY! Just leave a comment below if you’d like to join in!

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I have a love-hate relationship with these covers

We’ll be posting the reviews on November 26th (give or take). Happy Reading!

Discworld Readathon Review: Mort

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Title: Mort (Discworld 4)
Author: Terry Pratchett
Publisher: Corgi
Release Date: April 1st, 1989
Genre(s): Fantasy
Subjects and Themes: Death
Page Count: 272 (paperback)

 

 

 

 

Yesterday was the “official” review post date but I didn’t actually start the book until Sunday, so you’re getting this one fashionably late!

So. Mort. This book’s been hyped to hell and back by everyone and I went into it clutching wide-eyed excitement in one hand and squinty skepticism in the other.

And, well, turns out all you hypers were right, because this is my favourite of the Discworld books so far (which may not be saying a lot seeing as how we’re only four books in, but still).

Here are some reasons why I think the book worked for me:

1. It’s explores a master/apprentice relationship in a macabre profession, which I have a particular weakness for. Professions like gravediggers, morticians, “monstrumologists,” and well, grim reapers. There’s something about the handling of death and the act of sharing that craft with a younger person that I find hopelessly romantic.

Sometimes I think I should have been born in a Victorian gothic novel.

 

2. I love, love Mort as a character. First of all, he’s an underdog–I can’t not root for those. Second of all, he’s this wonderful mix of teenage eagerness–of wanting to prove himself to others and to himself–and thoughtfulness. He’s utterly endearing and hands-down my favourite of the Discworld protagonists so far.

 

3. Speaking of endearing, I love this version of Death. He reads like the mysterious, eccentric relative you’ve been sent to live with for the summer. And when you ask your parents what Uncle Tim does for a living, they just flap their hands vaguely and say, “Oh, you know, he does the thing.”

And you go, “What thing?”

“You know…the thing.”

Turns out they can’t quite recall what it is. Strange. And then when you get there you find out that, oh hey, Uncle Tim is in the Grim Reaping business. And he’s kind of awkward and old-fashioned and–true to his reputation–eccentric, but he tries very hard to connect with you, and you can’t help but find it lovable.

He’s not my favourite Death incarnation (that title goes to a certain goth girl created by a different British author), but he’s definitely up there.

 

4. The humour really clicked with me this time around. It’s weird, because it’s the same humour–it’s still Pratchett at the helm–but with Mort as a main character, it feels…more grounded. Less loud. Still witty but not too gratuitous. It’s hard to explain.

 

3. It’s touching. I couldn’t really say that about the previous books, but the character dynamics combined with the musings on death and fate makes for a story with a surprising amount of heart.

 And Pratchett has a way of dressing up small wisdoms and life’s truths in the most whimsical garb:

History unravels gently, like an old sweater. It has been patched and darned many times, reknitted to suit different people, shoved in a box under the sink of censorship to be cut up for the dusters of propaganda, yet it always – eventually – manages to spring back into its old familiar shape. History has a habit of changing the people who think they are changing it. History always has a few tricks up its frayed sleeve. It’s been around a long time.

In short, I loved it a lot more than I thought I would.

So I’m giving this one four and a half elephants riding turtles out of five!

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Here are the awesome bloggers who are participating this month! Go see what they thought of Mort!

Book Beach Bunny
Confessions of a Serial Reader
Meeghan @ Meeghan Reads and Bakes
Nicole @ The Bookworm Drinketh
Storm of Pages

Discworld Readathon Month 4 – Mort

Happy Canadian Thanksgiving! Things are super hectic and I’m just a tad sleep-deprived, but I’m still here to give your monthly reminder that hey, we’re doing a Discworld Readathon! The idea is that we read through one Discworld book per month–so a four-year endeavor, give or take–and post up a review on the last Monday.

This month we’ll be tackling Mort! Pretty much every Pratchett reader seems to talk about it with the kind of reverence usually reserved for Easter church services and that moment when you take your souffle out of the oven, so my expectations are super high. Stratospherically high. Like, this better blow my socks off into said stratosphere.

I’m joking. Mostly. But I’m still very excited and the book seems like the perfect October read. If you’re interested in joining (or dropping out) this month, just leave a comment below!

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Oh, and speaking of high expectations, it’s come to my attention that Nicole (Bookworm Drinketh) is on the hunt for the perfect alcohol to pair with her Equal Rites (Discworld 3) review, which is the BEST reason for a delayed review ever. I’m expecting some kind of godly concoction, Nicole. 😉

Reviews for Mort are to be posted on October 29th! Happy Reading!

 

Discworld Readathon Review: Equal Rites (Witches 1)

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Title: Equal Rites (Discworld 3; Witches 1)
Author: Terry Pratchett
Publisher: Corgi (newer edition)
Release Date: January 15, 1987
Genre(s): Fantasy, Humour
Subjects & Themes: Magic, Gender Roles
Page Count: 282 (paperback)
Goodreads

 

 

 

 

 

They say that a little knowledge is a dangerous thing, but it is not one half so bad as a lot of ignorance.

There are some situations where the correct response is to display the sort of ignorance which happily and wilfully flies in the face of the facts. In this case, the birth of a baby girl, born a wizard — by mistake. Everybody knows that there’s no such thing as a female wizard. But now it’s gone and happened, there’s nothing much anyone can do about it. Let the battle of the sexes begin.
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Okay, so Equal Rites wasn’t quite the battle of the sexes (at least, not until the end), but I did enjoy it far, far more than I did The Colour of Magic. Part of that has to do with the setting which is a lot more contained this time around, so the readers aren’t bombarded with worldbuilding info from the get-go. Instead we start off with a small village called “Bad Ass” and a wizard who accidentally passes his staff to a newborn girl instead of, well, a boy. Because girls can be witches and boys can be wizards, but under absolutely no condition can the two ever mix.

Pratchett delves into the arbitrary gender roles that society assigns us from birth. It’s a familiar topic and one that I can always get behind, so I found myself a lot more invested in the main characters’ plights this time around. Eskarina (our accidental wizard girl), though young and naïve, is determined to prove that she can be a wizard. With her intelligence and spirit, it’s impossible not to root for her.

“Why was it that when she heard Granny ramble on about witchcraft she longed for the cutting magic of wizardry, but whenever she heard Treatle speak in his high-pitched voice she would fight to the death for witchcraft? She’d be both or none at all. And the more they intended to stop her, the more she wanted it.”

Also, I loved the whole “staves are for wizards (who are boys) and brooms are for witches (who are girls),” thing the story kept harping on about because, really, they’re both just long sticks of wood, so the idea of gender-coding them is absurd–which is exactly what Pratchett was going for.

I also really liked his explanation of the law of magic and the hierarchy of magic users and how some categories of users are seen as superior to others–like how magicians are lower than wizards but still better thought of than “conjurers.” It’s fun stuff.

Oh, and Granny Weatherwax? I’ve heard a lot about you. A lot of good things ending in multiple exclamation marks. And you know what? They were right. I really like you. I know you’re not much of a book person and think stories should be approached with a boatload of skepticism, but I think we can still get along. I love your practicality and your explanation of “headology” and the idea that, sometimes, real magic is what we believe it to be. So yeah, I’m very much looking forward to getting to know you better.

Overall, Equal Rites was a fun, light read that charmed my pants off and I’m giving it FOUR elephants-riding-turtles out of five.
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Here are the awesome bloggers who are participating this month! Go see what they thought of Equal Rites!

Book Beach Bunny
Meeghan @ Meeghan Reads and Bakes
Nicole @ The Bookworm Drinketh
Storm of Pages

Discworld Readathon Month 3 – Equal Rites (Witches 1)

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Because I have ZERO concept of time and think “fashionably late” means arriving when the rest of the guests are just leaving (tip: if you ever invite me to a party, lie and say that it starts two hours before the actual start time), I’m writing this announcement post a week late. *Long sigh*

For those who don’t know, Nicole (Bookworm Drinketh) and I started up the Discworld Readathon in July (you can read about its inception here). Our plan is to read through one Discworld book every month and then post a review on the last Monday.

It’s one of those “What have I gotten myself into?” deals, but like, in a good way–with a smiley face attached to the end.

I couldn’t get to The Light Fantastic in August because A) mental health and B) drowning in ARCs, but I’m back on schedule this month (though still drowning in ARCs) and very excited to be diving into Equal Rites!

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It’s the first in the “Witches” subseries and probably would have been more apropos for October, but hey, I figure Mort (Book 4) will be spooky enough for Halloween.

If you’re interested in joining (or dropping out) this month, just leave a comment below!

Reviews are to be posted on September 24th! Happy Reading! ❤