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Witches Abroad: (Discworld Novel 12) (Discworld Novels) [Paperback]

Terry Pratchett
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (87 customer reviews)
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Book Description

1 Aug 2005 Discworld Novels (Book 12)

'Things have to come to an end, see. That's how it works when you turn the world into stories. You should never have done that. You shouldn't treat people like they was characters, like they was things. But if you do, then you've got to know where the story ends.'

That's the problem when you let real life get in the way of a good story. You shouldn't let it happen. Especially when a good story involves three witches, including a fairy godmother, travelling to a faraway land to make sure that a servant girl doesn't marry a prince. It looks as though a happy ending may be averted before catastrophe strikes. But unfortunately the forces of good are up against a Godmother who has made Destiny an offer it can't refuse...

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Witches Abroad: (Discworld Novel 12) (Discworld Novels) + Lords and Ladies (Discworld, No. 14)
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Product details

  • Paperback: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Corgi; New Ed edition (1 Aug 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 055215296X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0552152969
  • Product Dimensions: 2.4 x 12.9 x 19.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (87 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 21,701 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Terry Pratchett is the acclaimed creator of the global bestselling Discworld series, the first of which, The Colour of Magic, was published in 1983. In all, he is the author of fifty bestselling books. His novels have been widely adapted for stage and screen, and he is the winner of multiple prizes, including the Carnegie Medal, as well as being awarded a knighthood for services to literature. Worldwide sales of his books now stand at 70 million, and they have been translated into thirty-seven languages.

Photography © David Bird

Product Description


"A true orginal among contemporary writers" (The Times)

"His jokes are the best thing since Wodehouse. His comic footnotes are still glorious" (The Times)

"Pratchett's writing is a constant delight. No-one mixes the fantastical and mundane to better comic effect or offers sharper insights into the absurdities of modern endeavour" (Daily Mail)

"Terry Pratchett is simply the best humourous writer of the 20th century" (Brendan Wignall Oxford Times)

Book Description

The twelfth Discworld novel.

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Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
4.7 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
30 of 31 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of Pratchett's best 3 Mar 2006
This is one of my all-time favourite Pratchett books. Everything that he's good at is exhibited here - adapting stories and fairy tales, "translating" real life culture to the Discworld, great characterisation and dialogue, a great plot - and, of course, it's hilariously funny.
If you're a fan of the Witches, it's even better. Granny Weatherwax, Nanny Ogg and Magrat Garlick each get a chance to shine, in their own particular ways (as does Greebo). Pratchett takes them far away from Lancre, and it's highly entertaining to see how they react to 'forn' cultures and people. Nanny's postcards home are particularly worth a mention for sheer comedy value!
It's amazing how many references to real life cultures, stories and events Pratchett manages to fit into this book, and yet none of them seem hurried, forced or superfluous - each event fits in perfectly to one fantastic story. It's one of those books where every single line is a classic and every bit of dialogue is completely perfect. Hard to imagine how it could get better than this.
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19 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A powerful story of a story's power 9 Jan 2006
By Stephen A. Haines HALL OF FAME
Terry Pratchett was recently awarded a well-deserved prize for "lifetime service to Booksellers". That's not surprising, although finding enough shelf space for two dozen Discworld books must be a challenge. Witches Abroad is one Discworld tome deserving a permanent niche on any shelf - especially yours. You'll return to it often.
The clash between established experience and youthful endeavor is caught here in Pratchett's matchless style. Granny Weatherwax, Lancre's predominate headologist, is severely challenged by the youngest member of the coven, Magrat Garlick. Magrat's heir to a powerful device and honour - a fairy godmother's wand. Magrat's life is further complicated by an identity crisis. She's not always comfortable in her role in life, and this new responsibility compounds the problem. Nevertheless, she's been given the wand and a charge to prevent a marriage. A formidable task, given that the marriage is to occur in "forn parts".
The witches' journey to Genua is one of the highlights of Pratchett's inventive mind. Esme's participation in a Cripple Mister Onion contest along the way would make the most ardent card player shudder in recognition. The innocent Granny exhibiting "beginner's luck" is priceless.
Pratchett introduces us to the power of the story in the universe. Stories "play themselves", shaping people's actions to their own ends. People who resist their roles in stories do so at their peril. This story, so classic and well established, should be irresistible, but then it hasn't dealt with Esme Weatherwax. The struggle is immense, with mighty powers brought to bear in seeking a resolution. Only time will tell which has the greater power.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Phenomenal 4 Feb 2002
By A Customer
I have read every Discworld book up to The Truth and I must say that this makes my top five. As witches books go it is beaten only by Lords and Ladies, which is my favourite of all time. In fact, as this is written I am curretly re-reading Witches Abroad.
Once the witches leave Lancre the tale moves at breakneck speed (this is Lord Of The Rings condensed) featuring some superb set pieces. An example is the riverboat scene, which ranks as one of the very best scenes alongside the timewarp spell in Wyrd Sisters, Death's arrival in the store in Hogfather and Vimes' escape from the Werewolves in the Fifth Elephant.
Some of the parodies are superb, and the Little Red Riding Hood sequence is possibly the most chilling scene in any Discworld novel. Also, Nanny Ogg's letters home have to be the all time funniest jokes. So read this, and you'll never see fairy tales in the same light again.
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
The Christmas panto has never been the same since reading "Witches Abroad". Every page brought more absurd farce and I just couldn't put the book down. There should be a warning on the cover that reading in public may result in internment in the local home for the mentally unbalanced as well as being asked "Are you alright, Dear?" by concerned strangers.
My Mother (who is NOT a fantasy fan) asked me very secretively if "There are any other books by that author?" after she started reading it just to make sure the content was suitable for my son to read. He had to wait until she had finished it before he got a look in! Of all the Terry Pratchett books I have read, and I have read most of them, "Witches Abroad" remains my all time favourite. It is one book I can read over and over and always find something new.
A basic knowledge of folk stories is needed to get the most out of the story. Put the real world on hold for an evening and escape into Discworld.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars It's magic, as usual. 12 May 2004
Granny Weatherwax, Nanny Ogg and Magrat Garlick are on a mission to save a distressed maiden from a fate worse than Death (who is, in any case, a nice chap really). Magrat's inherited a fairy godmother wand and a big responsibility. The three witches fly to Genua to do the job and it's an eventful journey. They run into a variety of characters and situations from all sorts of stories, including a village with a vampire problem, delving dwarves (possibly delving too greedily and too deep), a big bad wolf - and so on. They find the folks in Genua are living a fairy-tale sort of existence and are sorely in need of some solid reality - especially poor Ember Ella who doesn't fancy the prince one bit and certainly doesn't want to marry him.
It's not exactly like real life but, on the other hand, it's a sort of study in the every-day mundane ... with a twist. That's want makes it so funny. This book kept me happily entertained for a few hours at a time when I needed a laugh, so it gets my vote!
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars interesting development of the role of the witches, in particular...
interesting development of the role of the witches, in particular where Granny Weatherwax's eventual character is defined. Read more
Published 3 days ago by Mrs. R. Davis
5.0 out of 5 stars Terry Pratchett
I love this author. Excellent his usual high standard and the book, 2nd hand is in great condition, very happy.
Published 12 days ago by Ravcas
4.0 out of 5 stars witches
haven't finished it yet but it's better than Reaper man which had too much about death. word word word word.
Published 17 days ago by mars bar
5.0 out of 5 stars funny take on fairy tales
This is the third book in the witches arc. It is flavored with the usual humor expected from Pratchett's work.
Published 1 month ago by Draconis
5.0 out of 5 stars Such A Shame This Book Had To End
This has to be one of Terry's best, I've read this 3 times and each time I am transported on the adventure that is the Discworld Witches. Read more
Published 1 month ago by SusieB
5.0 out of 5 stars an unusual story and very entertaining
I have read quite a lot of Terry Pratchett books and this is one of my favourites.
I would recommend people who like something different to read his books. Read more
Published 1 month ago by dianeh
5.0 out of 5 stars fantastic witches
this book is for all those people who loved fairy tales as a kid, but this is a more grown up and funnier version of the genre. Terry at his best.
Published 2 months ago by nellie55
5.0 out of 5 stars Discworld discovered
Wish I had read Terry Prachett earlier in my life! I did not know what I was missing. Now addicted.
Published 2 months ago by J. Fenton
4.0 out of 5 stars Vintage Prachett.
I feel unworthy to write a review on one of Sir Ts books, but anyway I really enjoyed this outing of the witches and their aerial adventures. Good fun!
Published 2 months ago by tychos
5.0 out of 5 stars never trust an old woman.
this is pratchett at his best.
funny enthralling a murder mystery with a twist.
if you think lords are in charge forget it watch out for th three women in the front... Read more
Published 2 months ago by Antiope
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