- Hardcover: 400 pages
- Publisher: Doubleday; First edition (8 Oct. 2009)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0385609345
- ISBN-13: 978-0385609340
- Product Dimensions: 16.1 x 3.7 x 24.1 cm
- Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars See all reviews (330 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 32,504 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Unseen Academicals: (Discworld Novel 37) Hardcover – 8 Oct 2009
|New from||Used from|
- Choose from over 13,000 locations across the UK
- Prime members get unlimited deliveries at no additional cost
- Find your preferred location and add it to your address book
- Dispatch to this address when you check out
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your e-mail address or mobile phone number.
"This is the 37th in a body of work so vast that it has spawned its own concordance, yet the quality remains as high as ever and the laughs as plentiful...Like all the Discworld novels, Unseen Academicals rewards a second reading. As ever it is peppered with allusions, from Keats to the Lewinsky affair, but, like Wodehouse, Pratchett wears his learning lightly and the pleasure of rereading is in teasing them out." (Peter Inham Telegraph)
"Mention comic fantasy and Terry Pratchett is the first name that comes to mind...behind the fantasy Terry Pratchett looks at very real contemporary issues and scores many goals. This isn't just football, it's Discworld football. Or, to borrow another phrase, it's about life, the Universe, and everything." (The Times)
"The subject matter is football, with a dash of Romeo and Juliet thown in...exactly what's needed to cheer us all up in the autumnal gloom. Terry has lost none of his ability to raise a laugh...I'll wager there are a few more books in him yet." (Daily Express)
"We doubt whether Pratchett gives a fig about 22 men kicking a bag of wind,but he's ever fascinated by people,our vagaries, our vanities and our triumphs. And, when all's said and done, football is all about us, wherever we sit in society. In case you hadn't already guessed, the man of the match award goes, not for the first time, to Sir Terry Pratchett." (SFX)
"Satirical, historical, fantastical and irresistible." (Daily Mail)
Football comes to the Discworld! And the thing about football - the important thing about football - is that it is not just about football.See all Product Description
Inside This Book(Learn More)
Browse and search another edition of this book.
What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?
Top Customer Reviews
Some parts of the book are an unusual departure in terms of the theme of the book - not so much inconsistent but as part of a continual evolution of the character of Ankh-Morpork and its various inhabitants. More so than any other Discworld book, I got the feeling from this novel that things are genuinely changing in the world. People are moving on and growing up, sometimes with surprising results. It genuinely feels like the book moves the continuing story of the Discworld on a few years.
I don't want to say too much about the plot itself, but it manages to avoid that which I had feared - the 'gimmick of the episode' style thing so common to the later stages of popular franchises. It's never the case that the football element is crowbarred in - it emerges rather nicely from the usual serendipitious circumstances that we come to expect. That's especially welcome, because not being a fan of football myself, the whole theme of the book is somewhat alien to me. However, really it's not about football - it's about the people, the mythology, and the spirit of the game. In the same way that the West Wing is not a show about politics, and House is not a show about medicine, this isn't a book about football. Football is just the vehicle used to deliver some important lessons about the nature of community and belonging.
It's a wonderful book, and a very worthy addition to the Discworld canon. Thanks, Terry!
The Unseen University crew are some of Pratchett's most memorable creations, but I thought that the majority were underused here, apart from Archchancellor Mustrum Ridcully about whom we learn a little more. Rincewind and his brilliant walking chest were largely absent from the action, but the eternally put-upon Ponder Stibbons and bolshy (ex) Dean are given plenty to do.
The story is a straightforward TP satire on society and the way it treats those seen to be different, and is a thoroughly enjoyable read; it just doesn't take the Discworld series anywhere new.
The real story, however, focuses on a quartet: Glenda, the wizards' doughty cook; Juliet, her beautiful airhead friend; Trevor Likely, a lazy lad with untapped footballing potential; and a mysterious goblin called Nutt, who works with Trevor in the University's candle vats. Juliet's star quality becomes apparent at a fashion parade, and as she and Trevor fall for each other she is lined up as the Discworld's first WAG. Glenda has to work out whether to assist or hinder this process; while the curiously over-educated Nutt seeks to avoid a looming and disastrous destiny.
The complicated interactions of these four with the footballing 'upper' plot are handled gracefully and with plenty of good laughs. Pratchett finds time to rail against a street culture of low aspirations and thuggishness without hammering the reader over the head. Welcome cameos from the likes of Rincewind and Vimes, as well as the full stock of wizards, round out the tale. It's not his best Discworld novel, but there's nothing to dislike and everything to enjoy.
"Unseen Academicals" on the other hand, is utterly joyful to read. On the outside it seems like a book about football, but as the quote on the back quite aptly points out, "The important thing about football is that it isn't about football." What we have here is a novel about the uncontrollable culture of football and the broad range of football zealots, from the lovers of the game and the men with the skills to the angry old women shouting "kick 'im in da nutz!" and violent hooligans that dominate the Shove.
But wrapped even more deeply is a realisation that Pratchett was actually warning us with that back cover quote. It really isn't about football. The sub-plot, surrounding Mister Nutt, an intelligent and incredibly polite goblin, and his Unseen University colleagues, Glenda the Night Kitchen cook, her assistant Juliet and candle dribbler, Trev Likely. This sub-plot, however, takes up at least 60% of the book, so to call it so would be an injustice. And further so, because it is a wonderful tale of romance, adversity and acceptance. Pratchett has created something quite special with the character of Mister Nutt, who will be a favourite of fans for years to come.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
As someone with a loathing of organised sport and in particular football I approached this book with trepidation knowing that football features heavily through out. Read morePublished 22 days ago by j cable
What can I say,a great writer, a book I hadn't read and in excellent conditionPublished 1 month ago by Mrs B.
Surprisingly I didn't enjoy this. Perhaps I needed to be a football fan, because I know that TP took a real pride in making sure his references were both accurate and subtle. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Blip
A story about football with a few storylines on the side. Once again a carefully crafted story that all comes together at the end. I cannot fault this author. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Amazon Customer
Great book a Pratchett classic. Lots of fun to read with all the usual characters plus a few more. Great.Published 2 months ago by A H Ballard