Customer Reviews


141 Reviews
5 star:
 (103)
4 star:
 (26)
3 star:
 (12)
2 star:    (0)
1 star:    (0)
 
 
 
 
 
Average Customer Review
Share your thoughts with other customers
Create your own review
 
 

The most helpful favourable review
The most helpful critical review


54 of 54 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A ratty view of people
On the Discworld, even wizards produce leftovers. Their discarded garbage, however, is laced with traces of magic. Out on the tip, the rats forage in the scraps - apple cores, candle stubs [good carbohydrate source], dogends. Like any trace mineral, the magic builds up until the rats have changed, gaining new talents. Among those talents are speaking and reading. Speaking...
Published on 31 Jan 2006 by Stephen A. Haines

versus
17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars not quite what I was expecting!
I've always been a fan of Terry Pratchett, mostly because his books are always entertaining and thought-provoking. However, this one was a bit of a surprise!
I found it a bit hard to get into - it took a lot longer than his usual two or three pages to grab my attention, mostly because I didn't quite understand what was happening, and once I got into the book, I...
Published on 1 Feb 2003 by Kiera Bruce


‹ Previous | 1 2 315 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Inventive fiction at its best, 19 July 2007
By 
SonicQuack (Essex, UK) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: The Amazing Maurice and his Educated Rodents: (Discworld Novel 28) (Discworld Novels) (Paperback)
As a long time Pratchett fan I began The Amazing Maurice with a little trepidation, after all, it is aimed at kids, right? One chapter in, I understood that Pratchett has truly mastered pitching a tale for a vast audience. At no point are adults patronised, and I should imagine younger readers would be just as engrossed, although the end seeks absolute closure and is just a wee bit too long. The story's main protagonists are talking rats and an equally smart cat. That in itself would be the central fact of a children's book. Not so here; the dilemmas faced within this tale are deep - there's (rat) philosophy, questions about what it means to have an idea of 'self' and a quirky and amusing outlook from the animal kingdom. Threaded through this is the plot, a typical Pratchett affair, in which an old tale is blended with additional panache, twists and wit. This Discworld story is as clever as expected, however the real winner here is that the new animal perspective allows Pratchett to unleash a book far smarter and engaging than most - absolutely recommended.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


19 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars another top rated book from terry pratchett, 19 Jun 2002
The Amazing Maurice and His Educated Rodents is just a fantastic, charming, witty and downright clever book.
It's something of a spin-off. If you've read Guards Guards you'll remember the rats who waited on the Patrician while he was imprisoned. He thought their tunnels probably went under Unseen University, and that some magic must have seeped into the tunnels, making them rather intelligent. This is more or less the story of those rats, although it goes one step further. They have now actually eaten magical garbage from outside the kitchens at Unseen University, and can talk, read, organise armies, and generally outsmart the average human. Add to their ranks one cat, aka Maurice, who also finds himself elevated to talking fairytale creature, and is about as smart as it gets. He finds himself a kid who can play the recorder and the biggest scam in Disc history is born. Basically the rats 'infest' one town at a time, kid shows up, plays his recorder - for a large fee - and the rats follow him out of town.
The scam becomes complicated when they arrive in a town which is already being scammed by its resident rat-catchers, a really nasty pair. Not only that, but it becomes clear that they are acting under the guidance of something more sinister - but I'm not going to say any more, because that is the essence of the story.
Pratchett somehow manages to pack about 10 different plots into this book, and weave all of them around the main story. What's more, all of them are worked out quite satisfactorily. There's the mental journey of the rats' leader, who just finds his whole new world very confusing, and views this newfangled thinking thing in much the same way that OAPs view Metallica. The only way he knows how to lead is the ratty way, and his story is about adjustment and compromise. There's the story of the rats' military commander, widely expected to challenge for overall command, but who realises that the only way to keep the rats together is for him to fiercely support their leader. His plot is about him going from hard-bitten, logical robo-rat, to being able to accept ratty religion. There's Malicia, a young girl whose head is so full of stories that she makes reality fall into plots around her. Her story is about the abrupt shock when reality departs violently from the 'correct' ending. There's the 'visionary' rat, whose faith is founded on a book called 'Mr Bunnsy.' His story is about realising that, when it comes down to it, rats are just rats; in an emergency all their new found intelligence is abandonned, and they panic just like rats. His faith is shattered, and he has to find a way to rebuild it.
The characterisation is just the best that Pratchett has done. It's on a par with the way Rincewind, Captain Vimes and Granny Weatherwax have been fleshed out, but done in a much shorter space of time. And what's great - what makes it so fresh - is that Pratchett *really* thinks about his characters, rather than going for stereotypes. After all, talking cats have been done thousands of times. But usually, the moment they learn to talk, they become just a generic, 'nice' fluffy person - taken straight from puss in boots - with no personality. Maurice, on the other hand, remains a cat through and through; a selfish, cunning, amoral, disgusting, flea-ridden whirling ball of claws.
The details also make the book. Like the way the rats are named. They take their name from the first thing they managed to read, when they suddenly became intelligent, meaning that it's mainly words you would find on the side of food containers. Some of them will make you howl.
And the writing style itself. Pratchett is the master of what I would call 'camera-angle-writing.' He describes an event from a particular perspective, leaving out everything you wouldn't see from that perspective, so that you find yourself struggling for details. This approach keeps me extremely curious, and I find myself suddenly realising what went on, during an event, several pages later when more details are filled in. For instance, at the beginning of the book, a hold-up is described, where a highwayman tries to rob Maurice and the rats. He ends up in rather a lot of pain, and in fear of his life, but it's only several pages later that you manage to fill in what happened.
This book is stunning. Pratchett is truly writing literature nowadays. There is as much in one of his novels, to be gained by analysis, as there is in a Shakespeare play, but Pratchett is a darn sight more entertaining. Read it!!
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


57 of 61 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Junior Discworld a must-read for all fans, 18 Oct 2001
By 
Karen Miller (Sydney, Australia) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
As a huge long term fan of TP's fabulous Discworld series, I was drooling with anticipation about this next, junior-sized addition to the saga. I got an advance copy this morning, and I finished it this afternoon, and I loved it to pieces.
'Maurice' is less dense than the 'adult' Discworld books, but in no way is it less entertaining. TP makes no concessions in wit, style or substance. Much of the intertextual referencing is concerned with things younger readers will recognise ... but I had no trouble understanding these little in-jokes, -- which says something about this reviewer, I suppose -- and I still laughed myself silly at them. In addition, in classic TP style, there is much to provoke thought for adults, as well.
This will be a great book for the classroom. In a light kind of way, this is actually a very deep book with some very heavy issues being handled ... but so deftly that you never feel like you're being preached at, which is a downfall of many young adult novels.
My favourite character has to be Maurice, followed closely by Malicia. When you read the book, you'll know why ... There's a fabulous appearance by two of the Discworld's favourite characters, as well, and lots of other sly references to previous events elsewhere on the Disc that will have regular readers of the series chuckling.
But the good thing about this book is that you don't have to read any other Discworld books to enjoy it ... in fact, this might well be a great introduction.
There are chapter breaks in this one, which is out of style for Discworld, but they're headed by hilarious and relevant quotes from a children's adventure book.
Fabulous. I look forward to another Junior Discworld novel.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars not quite what I was expecting!, 1 Feb 2003
By 
Kiera Bruce (Essex, England) - See all my reviews
I've always been a fan of Terry Pratchett, mostly because his books are always entertaining and thought-provoking. However, this one was a bit of a surprise!
I found it a bit hard to get into - it took a lot longer than his usual two or three pages to grab my attention, mostly because I didn't quite understand what was happening, and once I got into the book, I found the storyline to be quite a bit 'darker' than Mr. Pratchetts familiar style.
What I really enjoyed was the characterisation of the rats. It's obvious to most fans how the author feels about cats as they appear quite often in his books, but the rats were funny, likeable and humane. I had my heart in my mouth, hoping that Sardines, the tap-dancing rat would make it to the end of the book. They were so realistic, I often forgot I was reading about rats at all! I also think that Malicia is an excellent character, and I hope she is brought back (for a spin-off?)in the future.
I'm not sure I agree with the 8's + age rating, because as I said earlier, I found it very dark, and quite graphic in its description of old-style rat-catching methods, and the dog pits. I would only give it to a very 'mature'young reader, or perhaps use it to discuss the way animals are treated with a group of children.
Certain parts of it would need quite a lot of explanation to 'young' 8-yr-olds, I think, and could be quite distressing to kids with a sensitive nature.
On the whole though, a fab book, with some really juicy characters, and a gripping plotline. A really good stand-alone book for those new to The Discworld, and a nice trip for those of us already familiar to Terry Pratchett.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An AMAZING adventure from Terry Pratchett!, 11 Jun 2004
This review is from: The Amazing Maurice and his Educated Rodents: (Discworld Novel 28) (Discworld Novels) (Paperback)
I picked this up in a Waterstones store some months ago - simply because it was the only one we hadn't got at home. I had seen it on the (LONG) list of titles by TP but was unsure of if it was a Discworld book or not. It is classed as a Children's or Young Adult book, but personally I cannot see why adults shouldn't read!
It is about an entreprenuring cat with a band of rats, oh and the kid with the pipe. The cat (Maurice) and his Educated Rodents have all been affected by the waste magic of the UU in Ankh-Morpork - now they talk, have morals, write and, most importantly, make money. But this is the last time they're going to pull the Plague of Rats trick - because of morals, again. They end up in the town of Bad Blintz, this is a poor town. People queue for rationed food, a loaf of bread costs more than a dollar and rats' tails are worth 50p each! Suddenly the rats must learn a new word - EVIL! Something is wrong in this town, it seems they all ready have a plague of rats ... but the tunnles don't smell of rats ... as Malicia Grim would put it, it's a mystery ...
This is a truely fanastic read, and much worth it. It is one of the darkest Discworld books, I have to admitt it's scarey at the end - adults and children alike will be hanging on to everyword!
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars an insight into rats, cats, and stupid looking kids, 19 Jan 2002
I got this book for christmas and it looked pretty strange for a pratchet book, but it had a less confusing beggining than the others that have read (guards! guards!, feet of clay, lords and ladies, reaper man, soul music,truckers, hogfather and a bit of the last continent) and so i could get into it easily, the only problem i had is getting out of it, the book had to be hidden or no sleep was to be had!
The story is very cunning and i think that pratchet really has read up on this one, but where to referance for a group of rats and a stupid looking kid led by a cat im not quite sure!
This book is very good, sell anything to get this, if you have one book then this is the book to buy, hillarious!
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Absolute Classic!, 13 July 2003
I wasn't expecting much when I entered into this book, okay so it was a Pratchett so I was expecting it to be good, but a book for kids couldn't be as special as some of his Discworld classics could it? Too right it could! This is story telling of the heighest order.
From the brilliant development of the individual events to the excellent style of the fable itself, it seems that everything in this book is working in perfect harmony. A big mention must go to the character and background development, you genuinely feel greatly for the hopes and ideas of those involved, even if they are just rats!
A wonderful read, I'd recommend it to anyone.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Utterly Brilliant!, 3 Oct 2006
By 
Wrecky World (Edinburgh, Scotland) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Amazing Maurice and his Educated Rodents: (Discworld Novel 28) (Discworld Novels) (Paperback)
I hardly ever give 5 stars, but his book deserves it. It is just one of those books that stands out from the crowd and it is most definitely my favourite Terry Pratchett book.

As expected the story is extremely funny and well-written, but unlike many of Terry Pratchett's other books, it also clever, innovating, and it even gives you something to think about. Not bad for children's fantasy!

I would highly recommend this book to anybody who likes Terry Pratchett, anybody who likes fantasy, anybody between the age of 10 and 100, anybody basically :)
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This fantastically engrossing story is a Discworld classic., 12 Jan 2003
By 
Graham Willis (Braintree, Essex, England) - See all my reviews
The fact that this novel based in the Discworld is shorter than many of Pratchett's masterpieces that are so popular with the public, such as 'Hogfather', 'Guards Guards!', and the latest installment 'Night Watch' is irrelevant when a book such as 'The Amazing Maurice and His Educated Rodents' is such a refreshing and entertaining read. This tremendously written story that Pratchett has aimed to make more accessible to children as well as his hardcore Discworld adult fanatics has no bearing on the enjoyment that you will gain from reading it. The plots are not watered down, the characters are more enjoyable than ever before, and the usual magic that Pratchett writes with is still there and stronger than ever.
The storyline involves 'Maurice' (a ragged tabby cat who has recently become abnormally intelligent for a cat, thinking like a human, speaking like a human, and acquiring a strange urgency to ask mice and rats if they can speak before he eats them), many rats who have also taken the same course as Maurice, becoming intelligent, and... un-rat-like (they take orders from the head rat 'Darktan' such as widdling on the cheese, and tap-dancing on the dinner table), and a 'stupid looking kid' named 'Keith'. Maurice has survived four years in Ankh Morpork, struggling to survive, and when he takes his transformation to intelligence after eating a magical rat that lived among his new friend rats in the magical waste dump outside Unseen University, he suddenly comes up with a plan, involving travelling around the Disc from town to town, with a stupid looking kid he just found who plays a flute, a plague of intelligent rats who will take orders from him, and gaining A LOT of money for it.
BUT THEN IT ALL GOES WRONG...
Pratchett creates such strong personalities for the rats, that when you are reading you really do believe that rats are like this in every day life, and they really do have different squadrons such as 'Widdling Section' and 'Trap Disposal'.
This book will not take you long to read, and it doesn't include the amount of philosophy in Pratchett's other Discworld novels, but it is the most entertaining read I have had for a long time. Buy it, read it, and then discover the other masterpieces that have been produced by the greatest living author.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


25 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Just buy it...., 23 Nov 2001
By A Customer
A very good book (again) from Mr. Pratchett, another excellent parody set in the mirror world of discworld. One wonders what he will parody next....
I hope we see Malicia again as she was the life of this book and the real comedy injection. I wonder that this book is a children's book as I'm convinced most children would struggle with Pratchett's comic style, but would have no trouble with the book's marvellous narrative power. A bt of light reading for adults and a must have for any Pratchett fan.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


‹ Previous | 1 2 315 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

This product

The Amazing Maurice and his Educated Rodents: (Discworld Novel 28) (Discworld Novels)
£6.10
In stock
Add to basket Add to wishlist
Only search this product's reviews