Friday, August 22, 2008

Punishment that fits the crime?

Moist von Lipwig is a con artist - a brilliant man with brilliant schemes that have made him very wealthy indeed. Except it's difficult to enjoy ill-gotten gains when there's about to be a noose placed around his neck. He has been caught, and this time, it seems, there's no way out.

Yet somehow - impossibly - he gains a reprieve, of a sort. From the wealthy, cunning, highhanded Lord Vetinari. Vetinari gives Moist a choice: he can return to the gallows, or he can become postmaster of Ank-Morpork's decrepit, defunct post office, a place with mound upon mound of undelivered letters and just two other employees (not including Mr. Tiddles, the cat). Moist thinks he can simply agree and then sneak off, but he soon finds that escape is not an option.

He knows there must be some way to reinvent himself and evade Vetinari, but in the meantime he begins to find himself caught up in the challenge of revitalizing the postal system in spite of himself, particularly when it becomes obvious that his own unique skill set makes him the perfect man for the job. Although, as he readily admits, he is far from perfect...

This is another highly enjoyable book by Terry Pratchett, and, read by Stephen Briggs, the audio version is a delight. There are, of course, plenty of laugh-out-loud moments, as well as biting social commentary, romance, the most wonderful golems ever, assassins, and many lovable (as well as wonderfully detestable) characters. The combination of Pratchett's prose and Briggs' reading is unbeatable.

I'm very much looking forward to listening to Briggs read the sequel, Making Money (it is the immediate sequel, although, according to Wikipedia, Going Postal is the 33rd Discworld novel). I have read many, but not all of the previous 32 books in the Discworld series - and I doubt that impeded my enjoyment of this one. Discworld has many "subseries" that can be read together, as well as standalone books. I hope that one day Stephen Briggs will manage to read them all to me!

Books in the
Discworld series:
1. The Color of Magic
2. The Light Fantastic
3. Equal Rites
4. Mort
5. Sourcery
6. Wyrd Sisters
7. Pyramids
8. Guards, Guards
9. Eric
10. Moving Pictures
11. Reaper Man
12. Witches Abroad
13. Small Gods
14. Lords and Ladies
15. Men at Arms
16. Soul Music
17. Interesting Times
18. Maskerade
19. Feet of Clay
20. Hogfather
21. Jingo
22. The Last Continent
23. Carpe Jugulum
24. The Fifth Elephant
25. The Truth
26. The Thief of Time
27. The Last Hero
28. Nightwatch
29. Monstrous Regiment
30. Going Postal
31. Thud
32. Making Money

Going Postal by Terry Pratchett; narrated by Stephen Briggs (HarperCollins Audio, 2004)

Also reviewed at:
Bride of the Book God


  1. I have got to get around to reading something of his! I think I might even have one of his books somewhere…. Great review, as always.

    Not entirely sure what this is (maybe a play based on the book?) but I found a YouTube interview with some people about it:

  2. I really enjoyed both this book and Making Money.

    I am determined to read more Pratchett sooner rather than later

  3. Aren't the golems great? And so is Moist. Can't wait to see what you think of Making Money.

  4. Thanks, Ladytink. Yes, you really have to read some of his books! My favorites are still (and will probably always bee) the Tiffany Aching ones (a trilogy that starts with The Wee Free Men). I have heard rumours of a film based on the book. Thanks for the link - I'll go check it out!

    Marg - I'm really looking forward to Making Money. I'm glad to hear you enjoyed it!

    Nymeth - Yes, the golems are great. I love the way the reader did their voices!

  5. Not sure. Here is his list of movie adaptations:

  6. I liked this one too although it's ages since I read it. I didn't realise Making Money was a sequel. Haven't read that yet so I must get to it. I'm reading Monstrous Regiment at the moment which is another Pratchett I can highly recommend if you have already read it.

  7. I quite enjyed this and am looking forward to reading Making Money. It's good that Pratchett still has new main characters in this series as it is so long I would have gotten sick of them all by now!

  8. Ladytink - interesting - thanks for the link!

    Rhinoa - I just got the CD version of Making Money from the library - I can't wait to listen to it! I know what you mean about new main characters. I love them all, but it's fun to have new ones, or it wouldn't be so interesting after a while.


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