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199 of 210 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Real world comes to Discworld in a moral fable.
Commander Vimes is sent to the Shires to his wife's estate for a holiday. But crime seems to follow him anyway and when he finds that a murder has been committed he starts to bring city justice to the country. This means dealing with hot-headed blacksmiths, the poo lady and a Chief Constable who is an expert in Bhangbhangduc, and those are just the "good guys"...
Published on 21 Oct. 2011 by Andrew Dalby

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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Oh Terry
I love Terry Pratchett and have read every one of his novels but every now and again I there's one I struggle to get through. Vimes used to be my favourite character but with Thud and now this I'm struggling. This is just my opinion and no doubt most readers will feel differently and I certainly don't want to put anyone off. I will carry on reading his novels after all...
Published on 28 Nov. 2012 by Alstroemeria


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46 of 53 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Any Vimes is better than no Vimes, but..., 17 Oct. 2011
I was so excited about the release of Snuff. I love the Discworld books, the Watch series constitute my favourite story arc and Vimes is my favourite character within them (and probably my favourite literary character), however I found this book slightly... different.

I found it took a quite a long time to get going; there is a lot of reflection at the beginning rather than the action which is traditional of the Watch books. I think the initial slow pace is linked to Vimes' discomfort with the boring countryside; it only really starts to get going after the first hundred and fifty pages or so.

I also found that a lot of the characters seemed a little out of character. Willikins really comes into his own, and is developed brilliantly, but his characterisation is quite different to the Willikins of the other books. Sybil seems a lot more, uh, forceful in this book. The other guards felt kind of tacked on, the villains were faceless, Vimes felt...weird.

I really enjoyed Thud! and Vimes' battle with the Summoning Dark. At first I welcomed the Dark's cameo, but I think it was a little overplayed. What happened to the Guarding Dark anyway? Vimes seemed to be deviating a bit from Lawful Good in this book; I thought he was supposed to carry the law like a beacon wherever he went!

Snuff takes a rather more serious tone with fewer laugh-out-loud gags, and some occasional clunky writing, I feel terrible for saying this but I found it hard not to read without thinking about Pratchett's illness and wondering how much it was affecting his writing. Snuff is not one of the best Discworld books but having said this I did finish it in a day and I did still enjoy it despite my quibbles.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A very Serious Novel, 11 July 2012
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B. Vallance "vallance24" (Greece) - See all my reviews
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Think of Discworld and you think Wizards, Comic Characters, Magic and probably, like Gulliver's Travels, if you look hard enough, you can expect a serious message somewhere between the lines.

This novel is very different. There is some comedy in it. It even has some of the regular comic characters such as Nobby Nobbs (as an almost serious Police Officer)

This is a serious novel dealing with serious matters, such as a version of the Holocaust and racial slavery in the Discworld Universe.

An excellent novel, but probably not what you are expecting.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Could Have Been Better, 24 Nov. 2011
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Mr. C. McMartin "c_man_uk" (Ayrshire, Scotland) - See all my reviews
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I have to say that while I did like the book overall, I found this Discworld novel to be a little disappointing in places. The villain of the story was rather underwhelming, put down easily by Sam or others at every turn. I also thought the character of young Sam was a little too silly. Who was really THAT obsessed with poo at age 6? I know I wasnt. Also the humour of previous novels seems to have really dried up, mostly replaced with more serious moralising and long speeches. While thats not a bad thing as such, it does stand as a stark contrast from his ealier works, which I have always enjoyed.

I really hope he can lighen it up a little for his next novel. A few more laughs and a few less long winded speeches might not be a bad thing Terry.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Not up to his usual standard, 20 Aug. 2012
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I'm a big fan of Terry Pratchett, having been hooked by a friend's copy of Mort back in the late 80s and subsequently reading all of his Discworld novels and most of his other work.

The early Discworld novels were characterised by their sheer inventive wacky genius, they were like no other books out there and I would frequently devour them in a single sitting, putting everything else on hold until I'd finished. The more recent books were inevitably a somewhat different but still very enjoyable experience, as we encountered familiar but much-loved characters and new twists put on jokes and scenes we'd read before.

Unfortunately Snuff is a big drop down from the level of even the other more recent Discworld books. The characters are no longer lovably familar, they now seem to be stale, predictable and somewhat one-dimensional (and in Vimes' case, extremely angry). The jokes are no longer fresh or subtle, but obvious and really not that funny. It's hard to define how exactly, but the quality of the writing simply doesn't to be there any more. The best way I can describe it is that at times I felt as if I was reading a Discworld novel written by another, less talented author, using Pratchett's style and characters, rather than reading something written by Pratchett himself.

I really hope that this is just a one-off drop in form, but another book like this would force me to sadly stop buying any more Pratchett novels and instead re-read some of the older ones when I needed a dose of Discworld. For any readers out there who aren't familiar with the Discworld series (there can't be many who are looking at this book and aren't!) then please please please don't start with Snuff, go and buy or borrow some of the early novels in this series, they haven't aged a bit and you'll enjoy them far more.
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18 of 21 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Doesn't feel like a final draft, 6 Jan. 2013
Probably the least satisfying of Pratchett's many, many books. He's produced better since, as well as before, this one.

There's an entertaining story in there but it's hidden behind lots of superfluous verbiage and at times you have to put it down to gather the energy and inclination to find out what happens next. It really feels like an early draft. Lots of ideas have been thrown in, the story-line wanders all over the place and there's too much 'top of the head' dialogue that needs to be trimmed down. Plus all the explanations of items relating to other books, which haven't been seen as necessary in other books.

This one really cries out for proper editing and then reissuing.
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Doesn't feel like Pratchett, 2 Aug. 2012
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It is with sadness that I say that I think that the Pratchett magic is gone. I suppose it's inevitable, given the circumstances but I feel an enormous sense of loss. I own a copy of every one of the Discworld novels and have read all of them, some of them several times. I waited with anticipation for this one but was very disappointed because while it has the structure of many of his novels, Terry's lightness of touch and impish humour is missing. It feels to me that he didn't actually write it (although I'm sure he 'drove it', as it were).

The telltale signs were that:

a) the prose has become ponderous. There are over-long sentences the sense of which had to be found by re-reading (something I almost never had to do before)
b) long and incongruously articulate (sometimes political) speeches were uttered by characters who, hitherto in earlier books, could only utter things that were short, pithy, and often amusing - just read some of the things that Nobby Nobbs says in this book.
c) the twinkle in Terry's eye that accompanies a wicked pun, or witty phrase that just captures the zeitgeist are completely absent
d) there are points that Terry appears to want to get across (like the importance of the rule of law) that are delivered as oft-repeated hammer blows rather than the subtle point well made

For all that, as a Terry Pratchett lifelong fan, I am still happy that he published this and I'm pleased that I bought it and read it. While he can continue to produce books that are readable (and this is still a readable book) I will continue to follow him. But I'm afraid that, as I said, the magic has gone. Terry is unique in the English-speaking world, and under the circumstances of his cruel illness, I suppose it's too much to expect that he could continue unimpeded.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars another pratchett classic., 24 July 2012
reading some of the reviewers here i can't help but feel they have failed to mature with the author.

we all love the high farce of 'guards,guards' and 'witches abroad' but there have always been deeper,darker layers of social commentary and satire in mr pratchetts work.

pratchett has been likened to a modern dickens, but if all dickens' work had been high comedy in the same vein as 'the pickwick papers' would he still be remembered as one of the all time greats'.

snuff is classic pratchett, yes its a bit darker than most of his work, but there are still plenty of laugh out loud moments, often featuring vimes' young son or his butler 'willikins'.

ignore the moaners and get your teeth into a multi layered social commentary/satire heavily peppered with the usual hilarious insights into human nature itself.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars not the best, 9 July 2012
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i love terry pratchett's books i own all the novels he has written but snuff is the most difficult to read
if i had never read any of his books before i would have given up after the 1st 50 pages it seemed to me the story was going nowhere and lacked any sort of narrative direction in fact it was boring to be honest which is a shame cos pratchett is normally an engaging inventive writer
however having said that once i got over the one hundred page mark i found the story picked up pace and my interest and was gripped right to the end
this book is a hard long slog but worth sticking with
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing, 24 Jun. 2012
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W. Black "Bill Black" (Scarborough UK) - See all my reviews
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A disappointing book that rambles along and shows the author is getting too powerful to be edited properly. Long, indeed interminable passages describing things that have already been described once and a set of politics that are best described as odd.

Terry Pratchett is trying to hold good to his basically liberal politics with his need to find 'an honest copper' inside almost every policeman and virtue in every ethnic group no matter how vile he makes them. These are ideals that have died everywhere else, wrecked on the ghastly rocks of the teeth in Tony Blair's smile.

About the story, well it's the now almost expected cliché, of taking the copper off his 'beat' and plumping him down somewhere where he has no support and no friends and leaving him to solve everything.

'In The Heat of the Night' did that in 1967, now it's ordinary.

What the story ends up describing, and the author tries terribly hard to make you think this is a 'good thing', is his hero destroying a rural society to justify his own moral stand and imposing his own set of values on a society that obviously doesn't like them one bit.

Now this could all be a clever satire on the imposition of authoritarian politics on the Arab Spring, but I somehow doubt it...

A book where the main villain doesn't actually make an appearance, his henchman turns out to be yet another grinning psychopath with less brains than a cabbage and all the heroes can fight like a demons and never get beaten is more silly than tragic.

This book needs about 100 pages cutting from it and the last quarter rewriting.
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4.0 out of 5 stars An Amusing Read, 28 Dec. 2014
As a great fan of Terry Pratchett's novels I am always a little cautious when I start one of his books. What if it isn't up to his usual standard? There have been a couple of disappointments in the past but this is not one of them. I thoroughly enjoyed this book.

The Discworld books each tend to follow a particular set of characters - Rincewind & the Wizards, Death, Tiffany Aching, the Witches & in this case The Watch, or to be more exact, Commander Vimes. Vimes is one of my favourite characters. An alcoholic, footslogging, anti-establishment policeman who married the exceedingly wealthy & formidable Lady Sybil & became part of the Discworld's aristocracy.

Like many of Pratchett's books there is a serious side. In this case he addresses the concept that the real organisers of the drugs trade & people trafficking never get caught. He also addresses racisim - well, speciesism in the form of Goblins.

So, Vimes, Lady Sibyl & their son, young Sam go on holiday to their country estate. Where Vimes goes, trouble is soon apparent. The countryside is not as quiet as it seems.....

There are some fantastic characters in this book. Vimes is, as always, wonderful. We have the added side to his character of fatherhood which is entertaining. Vimes, like many parents, is often bewildered by his offspring & especially with his fascination for poo. Although Vimes is well written in this book, if you really want to get to know him then reading previous "Watch" novels is to be advised. "Guards! Guards!" is the starting point. Young Sam is brilliant. He has the blatant curiosity & self confidence which many children have & which does lighten many moments in this book. Wilikins is also back & features heavily in this book. I very much liked Feeney the village policeman whom I suspect may appear again in a later book.

This isn't a rip-roaringly funny book but is definitely amusing. It is an excellent book to disappear into for some light relief if the new year gets a bit much!
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Snuff: (Discworld Novel 39) (Discworld Novels)
Snuff: (Discworld Novel 39) (Discworld Novels) by Terry Pratchett (Audio CD - 13 Oct. 2011)
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