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46 of 46 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Possibly (although only possibly) the best Discworld novel
Ankh-Morpork City Watch – despite its growing ranks of dwarves, trolls, gargoyles, werewolves and “normal” (as much as they can be called that) folk – is getting increasingly snowed under. The more recruits enrolled, Sir Samuel Vimes is discovering, the more crimes seem to be uncovered.
Someone is poisoning the Patrician, and Vimes is growing...
Published on 20 Feb. 2004 by RachelWalker

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1.0 out of 5 stars which makes purchase very bad value.
Unfortunately, one CD (out of 3) was damaged, which makes purchase very bad value.
Published 29 days ago by C Mueller-Stewart


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46 of 46 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Possibly (although only possibly) the best Discworld novel, 20 Feb. 2004
By 
RachelWalker "RachelW" (England) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
Ankh-Morpork City Watch – despite its growing ranks of dwarves, trolls, gargoyles, werewolves and “normal” (as much as they can be called that) folk – is getting increasingly snowed under. The more recruits enrolled, Sir Samuel Vimes is discovering, the more crimes seem to be uncovered.
Someone is poisoning the Patrician, and Vimes is growing increasingly frustrated because he just can’t figure out HOW… And someone is murdering harmless old men. First, there is the old priest Father Tubelcek, who at least died with a glow in his eyes. And then there is the curator of the Dwarf Bread Museum, battered to death with one of his own exhibits. But, perhaps most disturbing of all, the golems – the solemn men of clay who aren’t really alive, work all day and all night and never harm a soul – have started to commit suicide…
And it’s not as if the Watch hasn’t got problems of its own …there’s something odd about the new dwarf recruit. There’s a werewolf suffering from pre-lunar-tension. And, having discovered that he is actually the Earl of Ankh, Corporal Nobby Nobbs is busy hob-nobbing with the nobs.
Vimes finds himself faced with the most puzzling case in Discworld history. There are Clues throwing themselves up all over the place, and they only cloud the issue. Plus, Sam is finding that, for all the answers lying about the place, he can’t for the life of him think of the question…
All the more ominous is the fact that the real truth may not really be out there at all, but that it might be in amongst the words in the head…
First, lets get one thing out of the way. It’s hilarious. But of course it is, it’s Terry Pratchett. There are some passages that have you chuckling to yourself, and there are others that strike you down helpless with a big belly-laugh. And then, (and these are my favourite) there are those that cause you to laugh jocularly, but then to take a step-back, awed, at the sheer TRUTH of what some of his humour illustrates to us, and the almost unbelievable cleverness of what he’s saying and the way he’s said it. The mirror he puts up to our own society enables us to laugh at it, to recognise it’s curiosities and, sometimes, its shocking flaws.
His plots are brilliant, and this one more-so than most. Like his other books, it’s a fantasy of the Discworld, but unlike his others, it’s also very much a crime/mystery story. And a darned ingenious one it is, too. I’ve not ever come across a more astoundingly clever way of poisoning someone in all the books I’ve read that normally fall into the crime/mystery genre. (And that is a LOT.) His characters are wonderfully well-drawn, and Sam Vimes is one of the most fascinating investigators of crime since Inspector Morse or John Rebus.
To be honest, any point in the series is a fine a place to begin (and make certain that you DO begin it. You’ll not regret doing so, believe me. Well, and his sales figures) as any other, but it may take you a couple of books to get used to the style. If you balk at anything other than reading a series through rom its beginning, then by all means do so. You’ll reap the rewards. But if you’re not all that bothered, try a couple from the beginning of the series – perhaps The Colour of Magic and Mort – and then read Feet of Clay.
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22 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A copper's question, 5 Oct. 2001
By 
Stephen A. Haines (Ottawa, Ontario Canada) - See all my reviews
(HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)    (REAL NAME)   
If pressed to choose a favourite Pratchett, it would likely be this book. Nearly every element
is here, delivered with Pratchett's premium prose and matchless wit. This effort is a bit of a
wonder, as it's a murder mystery, a genre I rarely delve into. Still, it's a Pratchett and goes
from being worth a look to something to be cherished, its chief character a man to be admired.
Sam Vimes, who we first encountered in a sodden gutter, soddin' drunk, has risen to a
knight's rank and is now Commander of the City Watch. He maintains a careful balance
between being the Patrician's favourite and his nemesis. Vetinari knows he cannot truly
control Vimes. For all Sam's resistance to the Patrician's deviousness, Vetinari knows that he
cannot dispense with The Stoneface Policeman. Especially this time when its Vetinari himself
who is the victim of a murder plot. An unsuccessful one, as it happens.
Sam's entered the realm of matrimony, a step which elevates him almost more than the
promotions granted by the Patrician. Lady Sybil, however, remains at the periphery of Sam's
focus. He's still a copper and one of the biggest cases of all confronts him in this book. First,
foremost and throughout this book, Sam Vimes is tasked with guarding his own back. Vimes
is "a jumped-up copper to the nobs, and a nob to the rest", which gorges the ranks of his
enemies. His thwarting of an Assassin is pure Pratchett; pure Vimes, for that matter. One
can't help but wonder why Vetinari doesn't assign Vimes some bodyguards. Instead he gets a
sedan chair - which he "drives" himself.
There are murders in this book, unusual in Pratchett. Two deaths arouse the City's ire against
new Pratchett figures, the golems. Golems reach far into the depths of European history -
mindless, man-like creatures from the soil who can be put to any task. Created only to obey,
they are the perfect slave - rebellion isn't in their make-up. Except for their size, they are
nearly defenseless. The perfect suspect, ultimately vulnerable, who can be destroyed without
qualms of conscience. The situation is so clear-cut that Sam knows they can't be guilty. But
who is?
In his quest for justice, Sam is supported both in the plot and in the characters of his Watch
team. In this book, Angua reaches new levels of prominence, which brings Carrot forth in
new ways, as well. Describing their situation as a "relationship" gives the term a whole new
meaning. The Watch now has a forensic expert in the figure of a dwarf - Cheery Littlebottom.
It's not possible to dwell further here on this unique Watch specialist. You must read this
book to become acquainted with one of Pratchett's most engaging characters. Read further to
discover one of his most devious creations.
As with most of Pratchett's recent books, there's a sub-theme running beneath all the hilarity
and convoluted thinking. In this case, the issue is "freedom". This word has been bandied
about by so many writers in so many circumstances, it's hard to believe that Pratchett could
bring anything fresh to the discussion. As always, Pratchett is able to surprise and excel. His
discussion freedom's worth and what it takes to be achieved adds lustre to an already superb
story. Pratchett's ability to bring philosophical issues into what is still described as
"humorous fantasy" is a unique talent. We must keep buying and touting this finest of
purveyors of wisdom and wit.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best Pratchett yet?, 14 July 2003
By A Customer
Pratchett is on top form yet again with this witty, mysterious and suspensful book, featuring golems, hippos, and a dwarf with attitude.
Familliar faces from the Watch return, as well as one or two new ones. Cheery Littlebottom, the self-proclaimed female dwarf and forensic expert, is a delight to read about, and the return of my personal favourite Nobby Nobbs is, as ever, hillarious.
The main star of Feet Of Clay, however, is Sam Vimes. Magically transformed from gutter-dweller to duke, he provides much of the wit and humour Pratchett is notorious for, as well as solving the whodunnit of the story, the howdunnit, and what they dun (though, admittedly, not before the victim in question, Lord Vetinari).
This book is probably not the best for new Discworld readers, but experienced readers will love it.
And remember the main message of the book:
Slab: jus' say 'AarrgharrghpleeassennononoUGH'.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars another top Terry Pratchett romp., 1 Oct. 2010
By 
Simon McCallum "Sam" (Newbury, Berkshire, England) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
As usual, I thoroughly enjoyed this Discworld Novel. TP's abaility to bring Ankh Morporkh to life is astounding (mind you, I have read so many of his books now I almost know my way around) and I always enjoy any of his novels involving The Watch.

Like all TP's novels, Feet of Clay contains huge variety of characters that are so real in your mind that in some cases you can almost smell them (foul ol' Ron or Corporal Nobbs).

The plot is as usual very clever with plenty of twist and turns to keep you guessing and lots of little assides to keep you amused I say 'plot' - the story revolves around two plots, one involving the Patrician and the other involving Golems with the two intertwined and linked rather nicely via The Watch who do all the investigating. I won't say more as you should just read it for yourself and enjoy. Needless to say, I found my self chuckling out loud - a sure sign I am reading a discworld novel and yet there is as always a slightly serious undercurrent that lurks just below the humour as TP mixes his subtle observations on live into his novels.

The man is quite clearly a genious and if I could write even half as well as he does I would be seriously happy.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best City Watch book, 14 Dec. 2011
By 
T. R. Alexander (East Anglia, UK) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 1000 REVIEWER)    (REAL NAME)   
The revitalised Ankh-Morpork City Watch is expanding and Commander Vimes is starting to get a hang of his new position and social standing when things start to take a turn for the worst. First two old men are found dead and then the Patrician falls ill due to a mysterious case of poisoning. The Watch and their new forensic department (a Dwarven Alchemist with issues) must find out not only who is responsible but also how they are doing it and how everything links together.

`Feet of Clay' is easily my favourite of all the City Watch books and I rank it as one of my all-time favourite Discworld books in general. The whodunit storyline of the book is interesting, the book is brilliantly funny throughout and also has some nicely emotional moments as well. This book introduces the interesting concept of Dwarven feminism as well as being the first to go into detail about Golems. The book sees all the usual City Watch characters along with a few new ones such as the Watch Alchemist Cherry Littlebottom and the Omnian Constable Visit-The-Infidel-With-Explanatory-Pamphlets.

`Feet of Clay' is easily one of the best Discworld books in the series and is easily worth a full five stars.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Feet Of Clay review., 7 April 2006
By A Customer
Feet Of Clay is another fast-paced detective mystery by Terry Prattchett.In Feet Of Clay the Patrician of Ankh-Morpok is being poisoned and there are rumors among the golems that a king golem will come and free them from their days of silent slavery.If the golems are freed they will wreak havoc upon their former masters and the only people who can stop this from happening are the men,women and various other species of the night watch including new constables Cheery,Dorfl,Downspout and Visit-the-infidels-with-explantory-pamplets.If you enjoy this book then read books 8,15,21,24,27 and 32.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Feat of Imagination!!!!!, 26 Dec. 2013
Another feat of genius storytelling from the supreme Grand Wizzard of The Genre.

These Watch tales are always a pleasure to read and re-read again and again, there is always something new that I discover, like the Dirty Harry scene with Carrot and Angua at the café and the getaway horse and cart across the road, pure gold.

All the characters are so believable, even the ones that get no more than a few paragraphs before they are killed off or merge into the cast of thousands, when old favourite characters make a guest appearance, like C.M.O.T Dibbler selling his sosig ina bun, brings a smile to warm the depths of any dark mood.

Sam Vimes is like "JUDGE DREDD" of The Watch, he is THE LAW. He's even got the same nickname 'ole Stoneface', hmmmmm.

Fred and Nobby are always welcome here, Fred wants to retire and buy a farm and when he's chased by the Golem ,he very nearly does. Nobby is possibly the last Earl of Ankh and he mingles with the other (k)nobs.

C.S.I makes an appearance in the Watch in the form of Cheery Littlebottom, a dwarf with no eyebrows and a gender/identity issue.

This is a great murder/mystery/conspiracy plot well worthy of Conan Doyles famous creation.

This is a book that deals with race, sex(ism), politics(yawn), slavery and murder, this is a page turning, roller coaster ride that you do not want to get off. I am always slightly saddened when I finish a visit to Ankh-Morpork and my time on The Watch ends.

Pratchett is a comedy genius with his puns and play on words,

"He's a Peer"

"I'd better put fresh sawdust down then"

'Nuff said
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5.0 out of 5 stars Excretus Est Ex Altitudine, 3 Jun. 2007
Feet of Clay" is the nineteenth novel in Terry Pratchett's hugely popular Discworld series, was first published in 1996 and is the third to focus on Sam Vimes and Ankh-Morpork's City Guard.

Sam is the now the Commander of the City Guard, and - having married Lady Ramkin - a member of the nobility. It's fair to say he's not your typical hero : he doesn't like the Undead (particularly vampires), Assassins (they keep trying to kill him) and - in keeping with an old family tradition - Kings (not an ideal musketeer then). Sam has quit drinking - though it's still something of a struggle - and smokes the occasional cigar to ease the blow.

Although numbers among the ranks are rising, Sam tends to rely on those he knows best. His most capable officer is Captain Carrot - who was born human, although raised as a dwarf. Carrot is an incredibly innocent and very honest character and is widely believed to be Ankh-Morpork's rightful King. (Sam has - to date - refrained from beheading him). Carrot's girlfriend, Angua, is also a member of the City Guard though - being a werewolf - she isn't quite so popular. Sergeant Detritus, a troll who deals roughly with troll drug-dealers, seems a natural - not to mention likeable - cop, though Sergeant Colon and Corporal Nobbs (a confirmed slacker and probably human) are the most experienced officers. The one newcomer is Cheery Littlebottom, an ex-alchimist dwarf who becomes quite useful in the City Guard's newly established forensics department. (Cheery left the Guild of Alchemists after, accidentally, blowing up the Guild Council. Alchemy is an unusual profession for a dwarf, though Cheery - as it turns out - isn't your usual dwarf).

"Feet of Clay" gives Sam a good, old-fashioned mystery to solve - a mystery that includes a couple of rather unusual murders. One of the victims is Father Tubelcek, who Sam considers to be one of the neatest corpses he's ever seen : eyes closed, arms neatly folded across his chest...and a slip of paper with some strange writing on it in his mouth. The other victim was Mr Hopkinson, curator at the Dwarf Bread Museum. Dwarf bread is much more useful on the battlefield than on the breakfast table, and Hopkinson had unfortunately been beaten to death with a loaf. There is a little white clay and a suspicion of Golems hanging around, but the murders are puzzling...however, it's difficult to focus on a puzzle, when you've also got to investigate the poisoning of the Patrician. (He's surviving, but only barely). The difficulties aren't confined to professional matters - there's even bad news for both Sam and Nobby at a personal level. Following a visit to the Royal College of Heralds, Sam learns he is ineligible for a Coat of Arms. (An ancestor, Old Stoneface, killed Ankh-Morpork's last king). To make matters even worse, news of his rejection is delivered by a vampire called Dragon King of Arms. Nobby, on the other hand, is devastated to learn he is Earl of Ankh.

Another very funny book from Pratchett, with a storyline 'underneath' it all that your standard murder-mystery writer would love to tell. Excellent stuff, highly recommended !
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5.0 out of 5 stars Can Captain Carrot muster the Watch to save the City again?, 30 Oct. 2000
By A Customer
Picture, if you will, a stellar sky, sparkling with billions of stars like glimmering diamonds in a peat bog. And there, in the midst of it is something huge, wonderful and totally impossible - the Discworld, mounted on the back of four elephants, each the size of a Sci-Fi writer's space station, while they themselves balance precariously on the back of Great A'tuin, the Star Turtle. Completely believable, isn't it?!! The eye is drawn to the sparkling, picturesque world gently spinning there, a world filled with flora and fauna that defy the boundaries of reality, like talking trees, elves, gnomes dwarves and the obligatory human, wizards that actually 'do' some magic (allegedly), wooden chests that sprout thousands of little legs, defies the space-time continuum and has a masachistic nature to boot, and so on. And how could such a world exist without Magic? Well, it couldn't! This, the third of the City Watch novels, pits Vimes, Carrot and their motley crew against the trials and tribulations of equal opportunities within the Watch and the recruitment of watch 'men' from other walks of life. Including dwarves and trolls (sworn blood enemies), the University librarian (a monkey... whoops ..ape), zombies, vampires and other members of the 'uundead' community, (and Constable Angua, recruited to represent women in the Watch, but also holds up the undead count as a clandestine werewolf). Under the watchful eye of Corporal Nobbs, the ultimate speciesist, they are thrown into the maelstrom that is the Watch. But suddenly, they have more pressing business on their hands, the murder of a respected dwarf within the community and a suspiciously spotless workshop leads Carrot (an adopted dwarf himself, despite being over six feet tall!)and Vimes into a hunt that takes them high and low and, as is more often, to other murder scenes. But friction is running high in the city. The dwarves accuse the trolls and the trolls retaliate by trying to stamp on them! Old feuds resurface and the watch have got all out war on their hands, again! And then there are the Gollums, those strange unearthly (or rather extremely earthy, being made of clay) servants who are driven by the words put in their heads. Why are they suddenly committing suicide? Has the work become too much for them or is there a more macabre reason behind it? Has it anything to do with the traces of whitish clay found at the murder scene? Carrot, moved by his dwarfish upbringing and his opinion (naive or otherwise) that every one is essentially innocent, throws himself into the mystery with all the vim and vigour that the people of Ankh Morpork (the Disc's biggest sewerage farm disguised as a city) have come to expect from this, their community copper, the man who can remember all their names and speak their languages as though he had been born in each of their respective countries. Completely in keeping with all of Pratchett's Diskworld novels, Feet of Clay is ouutrageously amusing and wonderfully witty, taking so many of our own situations and turning them on their heads (or whichever part of their anatomy is topmost!) He adopts a popular myth from European folklore and plunges it into the lunacy that is inherently Discworld.
Once more, Terry uses his astonishing wit, his incredible literary mind and his warped sense of humour to create another exceptionally funny addition to the increasing biography of the Disc. But beware, this book is not for anyone who is recently recovering from cracked ribs, as you are likely to land yourself back in hospital! Lock yourself in your room (preferably sound-proof) before you start to read this or any other Discworld novel, because once you start, any one within earshot will be screaming at you to stop giggling! I know, I've still got the scars!
As always, Terry draws upon all of his wit and sarcastic humour to bring together a novel of hilarious proportions. With cleverly integrated references to the quirks and disfunctionalities of ourselves and our own world, Terry perfectly draws the analogy between the Disc and the Earth so that you never know what to expect, because anything goes. But there again, in a world that is flown through space mounted on the backs of four enormous elephants, who themselves stand on the back of a vast galactic space turtle, what more do you expect?!!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best Pratchett book I have ever read, 25 Sept. 1999
I am a person who started reading Terry Pratchett about a year ago when I brought my first book using a voucher. In that period I'm nearly sure that I have read every one of his books and this I can say is probably the best. Using the characters from the books Jingo, men at arms and Guards Guards it is about the undead part of the city, and a bit about the darker sside of human nature. If you are new to the Pratchett series I would read a few of the earlier books but if you are a regular reader I would buy, no doubt about it.
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Feet of Clay: A Novel of Discworld
Feet of Clay: A Novel of Discworld by Terry Pratchett (Hardcover - Sept. 1996)
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