Tuesday, 17 December 2013

FANTASY REVIEW: Discworld 40: Raising Steam - Terry Pratchett

Release Date: 07/11/13
Publisher:  Doubleday


To the consternation of the patrician, Lord Vetinari, a new invention has arrived in Ankh-Morpork - a great clanging monster of a machine that harnesses the power of all of the elements: earth, air, fire and water. This being Ankh-Morpork, it's soon drawing astonished crowds, some of whom caught the zeitgeist early and arrive armed with notepads and very sensible rainwear.

Moist von Lipwig is not a man who enjoys hard work - as master of the Post Office, the Mint and the Royal Bank his input is, of course, vital . . . but largely dependent on words, which are fortunately not very heavy and don't always need greasing. However, he does enjoy being alive, which makes a new job offer from Vetinari hard to refuse . . .

Steam is rising over Discworld, driven by Mister Simnel, the man wi' t'flat cap and sliding rule who has an interesting arrangement with the sine and cosine. Moist will have to grapple with gallons of grease, goblins, a fat controller with a history of throwing employees down the stairs and some very angry dwarfs if he's going to stop it all going off the rails . . .


I’ve been a fan of Terry’s writing for years, grabbing each successive Discworld title as it came out purely for the fact that I could return to a world of humour, one that entertained and also gave me a cracking fantasy story that would make me laugh as ell as cheer me up after a bad day. Yet sadly for me this book left me feeling flat.


Well to be honest this doesn’t feel like a Pratchett title, the humour felt forced, the characterisations weren’t as vivid as they have been and to be honest overall it didn’t have the usual zeal or spark that other titles have had for me. All round I was greatly disappointed and whilst I’m pleased that I took the time to read it, I’d perhaps suggest others pick it up either as a PB or borrow from the library.

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