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32 of 32 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars At the end of things, here is the start: The Colour Of Magic. Rest In Peace Terry.
Terry's death did not really hit me properly until the following though entered my head: "No more Rincewind. I won't get to read anything else about Rincewind". I can't tell you how immeasurably sad that made me feel. How utterly sad, and equally angry that we don't live in a world where Death can be cheated and bargained with, as long as you have 4cc of mouse blood and a...
Published 19 days ago by Nick Spalding

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Creative but disappointing
I rarely read books on the basis that someone says "you really should read this," preferring to find my own taste. When a friend told me that reading Terry Pratchett reminded him of listening to me, however, this appealed to my vanity and I bought "The Colour of Magic". Reading it reminds me why I'm not a published author.

It's not a dreadful book: there are a...
Published on 31 Oct. 2010 by GJ


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32 of 32 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars At the end of things, here is the start: The Colour Of Magic. Rest In Peace Terry., 13 Mar. 2015
By 
Nick Spalding (United Kingdom...The warm bit in the south) - See all my reviews
Terry's death did not really hit me properly until the following though entered my head: "No more Rincewind. I won't get to read anything else about Rincewind". I can't tell you how immeasurably sad that made me feel. How utterly sad, and equally angry that we don't live in a world where Death can be cheated and bargained with, as long as you have 4cc of mouse blood and a fast mouth.

It is no understatement to say that we have lost one of the world's greatest ever humorous novelists. I can only hope that there is some kind of afterlife - however unlikely that may sometimes seem - and that Terry has by now met up with Douglas Adams in some ethereal bar, and they are happily discussing the absurdity of human nature together over a Pan Galactic Gargleblaster and some Klatchian coffee.

And here, at the end of things, let's talk briefly about the start of things - the first book in the Discworld series. A book I first bought in 1985 from WH Smith with several week's worth of pocket money. Okay, The Colour Of Magic has its flaws, and it doesn't necessarily sparkle with its use of language the same way that Terry's later books would do, but it makes up for having a few rough edges by being so crammed full of heart and soul that it's enough to make you weep. Everything that Terry would go on to refine and sharpen in the following 39 Discworld books is in evidence here, in an embryonic stage. Rincewind is, and always will be, one of the greatest fantasy characters ever created, precisely because he is one of the worst fantasy characters ever created. If you gave him a magic ring and told him to toss it in a mountain, he'd give you a look in no uncertain terms, and be headed for the horizon before you could say 'Mithrandir'. I love him without reservation. His wit, his sarcasm, his absolute and concrete belief that people are mostly idiots, and best avoided if at all possible. The fact I'll never follow any more of his adventures actually gives me a small feeling of physical pain.

The Colour Of Magic is an important book, because it is a beginning. The beginning of something marvellous, that is disc shaped, rides on the back of a turtle, is saturated with octarine, and (most importantly) holds a mirror up to a world far more ridiculous than itself. The longest journey may begin with the first footstep, but the best journey begins with a fire in Ankh Morpork.

May the universe bless you Terry. You certainly blessed this author with laughter and wonder every time he cracked open one of your books.

Ook,

Nick Spalding.
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19 of 20 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Where it all starts!, 27 Nov. 2004
From habit, I like to read series books in order so I started at 'Colour of Magic'. I bought the book rather the borrowed it.
COM is broken up into 4 novelettes. The story is about Rincewind, a cowardly, inept and absolutely endearing character; Twoflower (who is a 'Tourist' - some oddity never before seen on the Disc); and, The Luggage who's a forceful character in it's own rights.
The three of them travel through various places of fantasy on the disc, meeting odd people as they go along.
I must admit the beginning was confusing and difficult to get into since I was yet unaccustomed to Pratchett's writing style. But since I'd paid for the book, I kept to it. Thank Gods I did!
The actual plot is very typical-adventure-fantasy. The settings and stereotypes like the 'hero','scantily-clad heroine' or 'inverse mountain' were all a bit too unnessesarily typical of a fantasy novel. In the later books, Pratchett manages to steer into a genre of his own.
However, what makes this book so fantastic is the characters and their interaction with each other. Rincewind and Twoflower simply bring out the best in each other and their contrasting personalities (pessimist vs. optimist) blend wonderfully. The Luggage adds an extra zing to their relationships.
Evidence of Pratchett's genius is already present. With Twoflower being a tourist, we as readers explore the Disc with him. The tourist representations are hilarious.
I believe that people will only really appreciate this book if they read it before the others. The future novels all feature a better-developed Discworld and readers who turn to COM or The Light Fantastic after those would miss the familiarity.
I truly think that although COM lacks much in direct comparison with some of the later Discworld novels, this is an unfair comparison because COM is different and shows a raw and less developed Discworld. I still think it's one of the best in its own league. It fetches 4/5 stars rather than 5 only because The Light Fantastic (its follow up) tops it by having the slight, extra touch that COM lacked.
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75 of 80 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Extremely readable fun!, 10 Nov. 2002
I started this book having only read one other book by Terry Pratchett - I was kind of working my way up to reading the massive Discworld Series, so I started with The Carpet People (also a great book) in the summer, which I loved. So, out of curiosity at all the Discworld hype, I got hold of a copy of The Colour of Magic and started reading (despite various people advising me that reading them in order was not necessary).
I'm glad I did - I can't say I was an avid reader of the book straight from the start, but it soon became that way. I loved the characters in this book - Twoflower, Rincewind and Death in particular had me in stitches - and the setting, a flat, disc-shaped world carried on the backs of four giant elephants etc etc, and the amount of creativity with which Pratchett crafted his world, had me captivated.
I have now finished The Colour of Magic and The Light Fantastic, the sequel, having read them one after another. Although standing alone they are fantastic books, treating them as one book is probably a good idea, going by the cliffhanger ending of The Colour of Magic.
I would recommend this book to any fans of The Carpet People and other books by Terry Pratchett. It's a great book, so anybody else: read it!
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122 of 131 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The first Discworld novel!, 29 Jun. 2003
By 
Cammy (Aberdeenshire, UK) - See all my reviews
The Colour of Magic (this book) is the first in the phenonemonly successful "Discworld" series by humour and fantasy British author Terry Pratchett. Well, this was not the first discworld book I read. The first one I read was "Sourcery". I thought it was far too weird, so I left it for a while, but then tried "Witches Abroad" and loved that. I read some more after that and was hooked on the discworld collection. It's strange, they say "Never Judge A Book By It's Cover", but it was the covers of the books that drew me in on that rainy afternoon in the school library. Sorry, I forgot to mention, I'm only 13. But don't go away! Stay and read this!(and remember to say that this review was helpful!!)
But back to the book. The Colour of Magic begins by explaining what the Discworld actually is. For those of you who don't know, it's actually a huge plate that is supported by 5 elephants that are supported by a huge turtle, known as the Great A'tuin. Yep. That fact that the world (in the book) is a disc is obviously like how our ancestors thought the world was flat.
We are introduced to our main characters, who are Rincewind the inept and cowardly wizard, Twoflower, a short tourist with (judging by the front cover) four eyes, and a chest that has hundreds of little legs and a mind of it's own, known as "the Luggage". There are of course more characters, like Hrun the (don't say this to him) barbarian and the wonderful talking corpse. At first the characters spend time in a bar in the twin city of Ankh Morpork, where Twoflower's money seems to be worth more than he thinks in Ankh. They soon leave Ankh Morpork, find themselves in a magic temple in which you mustn't say "eight", riding on dragons that only exist if you believe in them and of course, talking to a troll made of water at the Edge of the planet.
Believe me, it's ridiculous and unconventional, but you will find yourself chuckling at the brilliant dialogue and zany descriptions that only could come from Terry Pratchett.
How does it compare with the others in the series? Well, I've always liked Rincewind and I think this is one of the best adventures with him in it. I think the Luggage is brilliant also.
The characters are about the most important thing in the Pratchetts, and the witches are my favourite characters along with Death, and so my favourite books are Mort and Witches Abroad, so if you like rincewind, you'll like this. This one I felt had a bit more as far as the plot went, rather than a series of jokes like some of his later ones are like.
Recommended fully, and remember to read "The Light Fantastic" which comes afterwards.
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76 of 82 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Have you forgotten how good it is?, 12 Aug. 2004
By 
Jane Aland (England) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
Having read the entire series of 30-odd Discworld novel's in publication order over the past 16-odd years, I decided it was time to revisit the first novel in the series. Would it really be as good as I remembered, or would it seem inferior compared to those later Discworld novels?
The Discworld of The Colour of Magic certainly feels like a different place to Pratchett's more recent offerings, but it's certainly not inferior. Nowadays Pratchett seems to use the Discworld as a distorted mirror of our own world, with allusions to real world politics and problems - in comparison the Discworld of The Colour of Magic is a simple (but effective) satire on the typical post-Tolkien Fantasy genre. This first novel introduces the long-running characters of the inept wizard Rincewind and the oddly anthropomorphic Death (what no Librarian? - my memory must have cheated), and uses the device of Rincewind having to protect gullible tourist Twoflower as a means of providing a brief tour of the Discworld. The novel is set out as four linked short story's: in The Colour of Magic Twoflower manages to burn the city of Ankh-Morpork to the ground by the introduction of insurance; The Sending of Eight adds Conan rip-off Hrun the Barbarian in a typical Dungeons & Dragons quest to destroy a Lovecraftian monster and capture some treasure; The Lure of the Wrym introduces an upside down mountain and dragons who only exist if you believe in them; while Close to the Edge finds Rincewind and Twoflower getting caught up in a mission to voyage over the edge of the Discworld itself (a theme Pratchett would return to years later in The Last Hero). Yes, it's a lot shallower than later Discworld outings, but it's also a lot funnier, and the Discworld is a much more fantastic place. And how could I forget such insanity as Rincewind suddenly finding himself transported onto a terrorist hijacked plane in our reality?
If you're a potential new Discworld reader looking at the mass of novels and wondering where on earth to start, then this first novel is still the best introduction. And if you're a long-term Discworld fan - have you forgotten how good it is?
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars How is this book 21 years old?, 19 Oct. 2006
By 
T Marshall (Hampshire) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Whenever the latest Pratchett discworld novel comes out I tend to get it, read it in one thoroughly enjoyable day, then stick it on the bookshelf with the others.

Last week for some unknown reason I thought I would re-read the original for the first time in years, as it's not too long and I had a spare couple of hours.

Imagine then my delight that it still crackles with intent through every page. We are taught the background knowledge that makes the rest of the series so brilliant. We are introduced to only a couple of characters that last the distance through the series; Rincewind the Wizzard and DEATH. Yet, the feel of the city of Ahnk Morpork proves to be the main character and is perfect from the word go.

I cannot understand how much moral courage it must have taken to leave the plot until "The Light Fantastic"; the books sequel. I don't get a lot of the sci-fi references throughout the book (my father-in-law reads a lot of Anne McCaffrey and reckons Pratchett is spot on with the dragons and suchlike). Finally I don't understand how anyone with a sense of humour would not enjoy reading this.

It is simply a great little book which leads you gently into the discworld with little fanfare or fuss. The trouble is you might find, like me, that decades later you are still trying to get out of the place.
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Colour of Magic and the Light Fantastic, 17 May 2008
I came across this omnibus version of the two first Discworld novels while searching for The Colour of Magic at my local bookstore. I am very glad I got this particular version, because you really need to read both novels to conclude the story about Rincewind and Twoflower. It took me a while to get into the story, but once I did I really enjoyed it. It is very funny, but at times also a bit dramatic. Now I cannot wait for The Colour of Magic to be released on DVD!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Creative but disappointing, 31 Oct. 2010
I rarely read books on the basis that someone says "you really should read this," preferring to find my own taste. When a friend told me that reading Terry Pratchett reminded him of listening to me, however, this appealed to my vanity and I bought "The Colour of Magic". Reading it reminds me why I'm not a published author.

It's not a dreadful book: there are a few humorous lines, the scenarios are highly creative and parts of the storylines are technically well crafted. It's just not a particularly great book, either. There is no character development and little character. The two main protagonists are simple caricatures: Rincewind is cowardly but quick-witted; Twoflower is naive and curious. The characters are not rounded enough for us to care much about what happens to them. When they are in mortal danger (as they often are) we aren't really too bothered whether they live or die (although when you're only part way through the first story you have a fairly good idea that they're not actually for the chop, quite yet). The cliff-hangers themselves become wearisome, too, with our "heroes" facing certain death until something unexpectedly snatches them from their perilous situation only for another to develop before they are unexpectedly snatched away only for another...

The other disappointment, for me, was the writing style and language. Although the writing is very competent and Pratchett's vocabulary wide, the writing never really comes alive and fizzes and crackles with comic brilliance the way, say, P G Wodehouse's did. It is far from unreadable but there is no particular joy in reading it.

If you are thinking about reading this book, I'd reccommend borrowing a copy from the library. If you enjoy it then you're in luck: there are thirty-five more "Discworld" books to follow. If you don't really enjoy it, you won't have wasted your money.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Spellbinding !,, 15 April 2006
"The Color of Magic" is the first book in Terry Pratchett's hugely popular Discworld Series. He has gone on to win the Carnegie Medal for "The Amazing Maurice and his Educated Rodents" and was awarded the OBE in 1998.

The Discworld is, of course, flat and rests on the shoulders of four giant elephants. These are, in turn, carried through the cosmos by an even bigger turtle called Great A'Tuin. (The astrozoologists of the land of Krull, in their desire to better understand the universe, shortly hope to determine whether A'Tuin is male or female). The Discworld's Gods and Goddesses live in Dunmanifestin, on top of Cori Celesti. Their favourite pastimes include playing games with the lives of mortals, with Fate and the Lady featuring highly amongst the leading players.

One of the Lady's favourite 'pieces' is Rincewind - a native of the Discworld's oldest city, Ankh-Morpork, and a coward of some renown. He is also an ex-student of the Unseen University, a thoroughly hopeless wizard and the 'hero' of this book. The only spell he knows comes from the Octavo, and is so powerful that no other spell is brave enough to stay in his head. (The Octavo was the Creator's spellbook, and was carelessly left behind after the universe's completion). As the book opens, Rincewind's home city is in flames and he is fleeing in the company of Twoflower - the Discworld's first tourist. Twoflower, who has just introduced the concept of fire insurance to Ankh-Morpork, comes from the Counterweight Continent and has hired Rincewind as his guide. He also has a very loyal and frequently angry Luggage, which is made from sapient pearwood. Twoflower desperately wants to see the very things that Rincewind desperately wants to avoid - heroes (Hrun the barbarian, for example), dragons, fights and such like. As a result, Death has been snapping at Rincewind's heels since he first met Twoflower - that is, of course, the tall and under-fed gentleman who wears a hood, carries a scythe and TALKS LIKE THIS. To avoid meeting his fate, Rincewind is willing to travel to the very ends of the world...

As the first book in the Discworld series, this is probably the most obvious place to start. (It's certainly best to read it before "The Light Fantastic", the series' second instalment - while the pair form a prelude to "Interesting Times", the seventeenth Discworld book). Pratchett's books are always very funny, and Rincewind and the Luggage are two of my favourite characters. Definitely recommended !
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars What took me so long?, 19 Nov. 2006
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For many years I have seen Terry Pratchett's books in stores and never felt the slightest inclination to read one - dismissing them as "not my sort of thing".

Well just shows how wrong you can be !

I bought this book (and Equal Rites the next one in the series) and I read them both back to back in less than a week. I have since bought another 6 and I am delighted to say that there are lots more of Mr P's books for me to look forward to.

Just a word of caution though, once you start there is no going back so don't blame me if you end up ordering every book in the series!
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