Tuesday, 10 November 2009

FANTASY BOOK REVIEW: Unseen Academicals - Terry Pratchett


Football has come to the ancient city of Ankh-Morpork - not the old fashioned, grubby pushing and shoving, but the new, fast football with pointy hats for goalposts and balls that go gloing when you drop them. And now, the wizards of Unseen University must win a football match, without using magic, so they're in the mood for trying everything else. The prospect of the Big Match draws in a street urchin with a wonderful talent for kicking a tin can, a maker of jolly good pies, a dim but beautiful young woman, who might just turn out to be the greatest fashion model there has ever been, and the mysterious Mr Nutt (and no one knows anything much about Mr Nutt, not even Mr Nutt, which worries him, too). As the match approaches, four lives are entangled and changed for ever. Because the thing about football - the important thing about football - is that it is not just about football. Here we go! Here we go! Here we go!


As a firm fan of the Discworld series its always something of a joy when the latest offering arrives, be it on the back of a certain Turtle (as it feels like it takes forever sometimes) or via the good ol Posty (when they’re not on strike.)

So when this title landed I pretty much grabbed it, ran like hell and got comfy to enjoy the offering. So what did I get? A tale of football and modelling told in Terry’s unparalleled style. That said however, it didn’t feel as good as it could have been, whether that was due to deadlines or more to do with my neutrality to the sport to start off with remains to be seen, but the characters were crisp and a new race comes to the Discworld which many would argue is long over due.

It is well written, the humour present and above all a tale that goes to show that Terry still has that magical touch. Add to the mix the return of old friends and a certain Simean being used as a goalie and you’ve got a lot to look forward to. Perhaps in the future we’ll see other teams making appearances in The Times such as a match with the Nac Mac Feegles as the opposition (although I wouldn’t want to bet on that being a friendly to be honest LOL.) Where Terry will tread next we’ll have to wait with baited breath to find out but I get the feeling when Nutt returns its going to be as dark as Monstrous Regiment.

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