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Old 2012-04-12, 6:58 PM   #26
The Adventurer
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Equal Rites is pretty bad. But its events did finally get referenced again in A Hat Full of Sky.

Speaking of... Make sure you read The Wee Free Men and it's sequels. It's pretty good.
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Old 2012-04-12, 8:20 PM   #27
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Going by publishing order may seem daunting. I'd say if you read it by the segments it is much more accessible. As other people have said, Witches or Guards seems like a good start. I personally started right in the middle with Interesting Time. I loved it but eventually found the rest of Rincewind books not so great.
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Old 2012-04-12, 9:09 PM   #28
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Rincewind/Wizards novels swing wildly from great to 'eh'. My favorite ones are The Last Continent, Interesting Times, and The Science of Discworld series (bafflingly unavailable in the US). I also quite liked Unseen Academicals.


Edit: Holy shit. I just remembered I haven't read Snuff yet. What is wrong with me?!
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Old 2012-04-12, 9:13 PM   #29
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Originally Posted by The Adventurer View Post
Rincewind/Wizards novels swing wildly from great to 'eh'. My favorite ones are The Last Continent, Interesting Times, and The Science of Discworld series (bafflingly unavailable in the US). I also quite liked Unseen Academicals.


Edit: Holy shit. I just remembered I haven't read Snuff yet. What is wrong with me?!
I didn't think Snuff was very good, compared to other Guards books at least.

EDIT: also Death isn't in it!!
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Old 2012-04-12, 9:22 PM   #30
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Small Gods if you want a stand alone or Guards Gaurds! if you'd like to start in on a series.

Do not read them in print order unless you're willing to commit to at least five or six novels. His first half dozen are pretty uneven in terms of quality.

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I'm going to be a dissenting opinion and say that I find that Thief of Time and Night Watch to both be superior to Small Gods. Of course, it's a matter of opinion, since Thief of Time was my first Discworld novel... but Night Watch is probably the height of his writing as far as visceral emotions go.
I feel like Nightwatch is easily his best book, but you do need to have read the lead up to get the full effect.

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I didn't think Snuff was very good, compared to other Guards books at least.

EDIT: also Death isn't in it!!
For the same reason he let Rincewind fall by the wayside, even those idiot fans badgered him for more, Death cameo just aren't that interesting and can really ruin the tone of a book.

Like in the Fifth Element: Having death appear while Vimes was running from the Werewolves rather spoiled the menace of that scene.
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Old 2012-04-12, 9:36 PM   #31
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Like in the Fifth Element: Having death appear while Vimes was running from the Werewolves rather spoiled the menace of that scene.
Maybe, but Death's cameo in Night Watch? The "who knows what lurks in the hearts of men?" bit was hilarious!

I also liked that Death was a constant throughout pretty much all of the books, even for a bit.
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Old 2012-04-12, 10:48 PM   #32
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Maybe, but Death's cameo in Night Watch? The "who knows what lurks in the hearts of men?" bit was hilarious!

I also liked that Death was a constant throughout pretty much all of the books, even for a bit.
I thought Death always shows up whenever a minor or major character died. Now that I think about it, you're right about him not showing up in Snuff

I have to say Snuff is a little weak but the Guards and Vimes have grown a little too overpowered over the years. Not as interesting as when they were a struggling organization.
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Old 2012-04-12, 11:02 PM   #33
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Maybe, but Death's cameo in Night Watch? The "who knows what lurks in the hearts of men?" bit was hilarious!

I also liked that Death was a constant throughout pretty much all of the books, even for a bit.
Sometimes it worked, sometimes it didn't. But I admire the hell of out Pratchett for being unwilling to slavishly adhere to his own tropes no matter how much some people bitch about it.

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I thought Death always shows up whenever a minor or major character died. Now that I think about it, you're right about him not showing up in Snuff

I have to say Snuff is a little weak but the Guards and Vimes have grown a little too overpowered over the years. Not as interesting as when they were a struggling organization.
The Guards books have always been fueled by Sam Vimes' character arc, which kinda petered out after Night Watch. Thud and Snuff have been fun rides, but there's not a lot of places left to go with the character. Same reason Rincewind and Granny wound down as major characters.

And after the last Tiffany novel the only character I really want to see more out of is Moist, everyone else is pretty wrapped up.
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Old 2012-04-12, 11:05 PM   #34
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Moist has at least one more book in him. I think Raising Taxes is the novel due this year?

Edit: Nope we're getting a nonDiscworld novel called The Long Earth. Co-wrote by Steven Baxter.
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Old 2012-04-12, 11:07 PM   #35
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Yeah, or sometime soon after.

As an aside Nation isn't Discworld, but I think it's also one of his best books.
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Old 2012-04-13, 12:03 AM   #36
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Publishing order you just have to earn the full series' experience by getting through the first few books without giving up.

Alternative starter = Pyramids, very vaguely the original Small Gods.
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Old 2012-04-13, 12:16 AM   #37
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Funny you should bring it up. I just finished reading The Color of Magic a few days ago. I have been wanting to get into the Discworld series for a long time.
This thread will help me figure out where to go next.
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Old 2012-04-13, 6:38 AM   #38
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Like Bylak, I always suggest starting with Mort. If you don't get into that one, the series is probably not for you.
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Old 2012-04-13, 7:04 AM   #39
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I also read them in publishing order since I wanted to discover the world at the same time Pratchett did.And yeah, Mort is pretty much when I *really* started getting in it, though I'd personally skip Sourcery.
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Old 2012-04-13, 7:39 AM   #40
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I also read them in publishing order since I wanted to discover the world at the same time Pratchett did.And yeah, Mort is pretty much when I *really* started getting in it, though I'd personally skip Sourcery.
Out of all the Wizard's books to skip why that one?
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Old 2012-04-13, 8:14 AM   #41
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Out of all the Wizard's books to skip why that one?
Certainly don't skip JUST that one if you're skipping. It's the book which makes the in-universe transition from Standard Fantasy Wizards to Discworld Wizards As We Know Them.
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Old 2012-04-13, 8:27 AM   #42
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Certainly don't skip JUST that one if you're skipping. It's the book which makes the in-universe transition from Standard Fantasy Wizards to Discworld Wizards As We Know Them.
That's what I was thinking!!
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Old 2012-04-13, 6:27 PM   #43
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I'm liking the Colour of Magic so far! I had forgotten I read it (and The Light Fantastic) when I was 11 or so, and enjoyed them, though I'm sure a good chunk of it flew right over my head.

Looking at the publication order, it seems like I'll get a good sampling of the various series fairly quickly.
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Old 2012-04-13, 6:45 PM   #44
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What I like about reading in the publication order is you'll get introduced to new characters properly and you get to see the development of the world a little more than just with sticking with one vein of the books over another.
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Old 2012-04-13, 7:02 PM   #45
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I started with interesting times, then went to lords and ladies, then I cannot remember! I do remember after about 5 books that I started at the begnning and just plowed through.

<3 Pratchett
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Old 2012-04-13, 7:07 PM   #46
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Pretty sure I started with The Truth then The Thief of Time. Then Color of Magic then publication order for a little while. Then I got into Rincewind and read all his books. The. I got into the City Watch and read all their books. And then I sort of filled in the gaps while reading the 'latest' novels as they came out (starting with Night Watch). I sort of regret not reading in pure publication order. But I think what makes Discworld cool is that you really can tackle it in any order you want once you get under way.
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Old 2012-04-13, 7:11 PM   #47
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Yeah, or sometime soon after.

As an aside Nation isn't Discworld, but I think it's also one of his best books.
Oh yea, Nations is one of my favorite books of all time.
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Old 2012-04-13, 7:23 PM   #48
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Uhhh holy shit I never realized there was an order, I just read them randomly o.O I didn't seem to be missing anything??
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Old 2012-04-13, 7:33 PM   #49
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EDIT: also Death isn't in it!!
Ha! Your right. I thought Stratford had run into death toward the end of the book, but it turned out to be Wilkins. Which all in all amounts to the same thing.
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Old 2012-04-13, 7:42 PM   #50
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Yeah, or sometime soon after.

As an aside Nation isn't Discworld, but I think it's also one of his best books.
I just finished the audiobook of Nation, and read the whole Tiffany Aching series a bit before that. If I ever have a child, said child's enjoyment or lack thereof of those books will be one of the biggest metrics of my success or failure as a father.

At any rate, I'll throw in another vote for reading at least the early novels in publication order. It's fantastic watching Pratchett build his world.

Regarding Sam Vimes' arc: He's easily my favorite character on the Disc, and I agree that Snuff was a bit weak. It did introduce the goblins, and I think they're going to be the source of a lot of interesting happenings in future books. (Shut up. Pterry's gonna be fine. This universe has a shitty writer if he/she/it/them lets such a man be claimed by Alzheimer's ) Thud!, however, was fantastic. Vimes' life may be settled down a bit but he still has the major hurdle of accepting that a man like him deserves everything he's earned. Thud! also has my favorite scene in any of his books:
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Large bit of a climactic sceneNight, forever. But within it, a city, shadowy and only real in certain ways.
The entity cowered in its alley, where the mist was rising. This could not have happened!
Yet it had. The streets had filled with… things. Animals! Birds! Changing shape! Screaming and yelling! And, above it all, higher than the rooftops, a lamb rocking back and forth in great slow motions, thundering over the cobbles…
And then bars had come down, slamming down, and the entity had been thrown back.
But it had been so close! It had saved the creature, it was getting through, it was beginning to have control… and now this…
In the darkness of the inner city, above the rustle of the never-ending rain, it heard the sound of boots approaching.
A shape appeared in the mist.
It drew nearer.
Water cascaded off a metal helmet and an oiled leather cloak as the figure stopped and, entirely unconcerned, cupped its had in front of its face and lit a cigar.
Then the match was dropped on the cobbles, where it hissed out, and the figure said: “What are you?”
The entity stirred, like an old fish in a deep pool. It was too tired to flee.
“I am the Summoning Dark.” It was not, in fact, a sound, but had it been, it would have been a hiss. “Who are you?”
“I am the Watchman.”
“They would have killed his family!” The darkness lunged, and met resistance. “Think of the deaths they have caused! Who are you to stop me?”
“He created me. Quis custodiet ipsos custodes? Who watches the watchmen? Me. I watch him. Always. You will not force him to murder for you.”
“What kind of human creates his own policeman?”
“One who fears the dark.”
“And so he should,” said the entity, with satisfaction.
“Indeed. But I think you misunderstand. I am not here to keep the darkness out. I am here to keep it in.” There was a clink of metal as the shadowy watchman lifted a dark lantern and opened its little door. Orange light cut through the blackness. “Call me… the Guarding Dark. Imagine how strong I must be.”
The Summoning Dark backed desperately into the alley, but the light followed it, burning it.
“And now,” said the watchman, “get out of town.
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