Monthly Archives: December 2009

Wintersmith, by Terry Pratchett

Quick thoughts on Wintersmith, the only book I’ve finished recently that’s worth writing about. (I also have reread quite a few Suzanne Brockmann books, but there’s not a lot to say about them that doesn’t also get into a recent Huffington Post article about romance novel and the ensuing responses from various blogs like Smart Bitches, Trashy Books…..another time, perhaps.)

Anyway. Point. Wintersmith.

I really like continuity in books. Series are great, obviously, but I also really like books that are connected in less-obvious ways. Like Discworld. There are some ‘series’ in the Discworld. There is a chronology of sorts. But there’s also books like Wintersmith which, while part of the Tiffany/NacMacFeegle series, also throws in a few things that tie it into the rest of the Discworld. The Tiffany series is, of course, connected to the Lancre series but I also smiled at the really brief – one paragraph – mention of Assistant Postmaster Groat, from Going Postal, which I just listened to in November, and the mention of the land of Djelibeybi, from Pyramids, which I’m currently listening to on my commute. This is the type of continuity that I like, that makes me feel intelligent and well-read, even if it’s only well-read in Terry Pratchett. It’s like the allusions that you find in more ‘literary’ works (see: TS Eliot for extreme examples; the man’s genius was in creating new poems entirely out of older ones) but more obvious. And the nice thing about this kind of continuity – unlike the allusions in Eliot – is that, if you aren’t familiar with the source (i.e. if you haven’t read Going Postal or Pyramids or the other books set in Lancre), you’re not really missing anything – but if you have, then it adds an extra layer.

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