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on 8 December 2013
I don't often re-read books, but having recently been slightly disappointed with the latest Discworld offering, I decided to treat myself to one of the old classics and make sure my opinion of it hadn't changed. I'm pleased to say that it's as good as I remembered.

n the early books, Terry Pratchett tended to focus on relatively crude (though very funny) parodies of fantasy tropes, and in the later ones, they become more stories about real life issues that happen to feature dwarves, and that valued plot over puns. This book falls right in the middle and does both aspects very well.

On the one hand, it's playing with that staple of fantasy novels - the long-lost king returning. Only this book questions whether that's necessarily a good thing, even if the suspected heir happens to be a good man.

On the other, it deals with real world themes of racial tension and positive discrimination in the police, using battles between dwarves and trolls to make the point. The parallels are neatly drawn, and the author makes his points clearly, without getting preachy.

The two main aspects are played out via a murder mystery involving a mysterious new weapon, and in-between are all sorts of side plots, clever points and amusing asides.

The plot is compelling, the humour is strong (both clever one liners and elaborate set pieces)and the characters are memorable.

I wouldn't count this as one of the very, very best Discworld books - I suspect that Pratchett really hits his high point a few books after this - but in some ways it's the epitome of a Discworld novel, so it's a great one to start with if you're new to the series (it's the 15th, but they don't have to be read in order)and well worth a re-read if you're an old fan.
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on 19 January 2017
12o'clock and all is not as it should be!
Captain Comes is shortly to be married to her Ladyship and the Night Watch is increasing. We have Corporal Cuddy (a dwarf) Corporal Detrius (a troll).
There is theft, murder and a problem with the guilds!
Good clean fun!
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on 5 February 2018
Continuing on from Guards Guards this develops the character's of Vimes and Carrot especially. Background stories become important in the forefront of the tale and future statuses have their origin stories.
This is the book where Vimes truly leaves the gutter behind.
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on 22 August 2016
This book is unputdownable. The characters develop well and the story goes steadily towards a showdown of putting a police force in good standing. This allows the Guilds to co exist with a Police Force using an inclusive recruitment even for the undead!
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on 27 November 2017
It just leaves you numb with admiration, these books glow with joy. A masterpiece, if your masterpieces are dogeared and slightly chewed.
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on 8 February 2018
Really enjoyable audio book. I have read it many years ago but still good to listen to
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on 6 August 2014
Pratchett takes on guns, or rather the only gun in Ankh Morpork, as a lone Assassin decides to return monarchy to the city. This is the novel in which the Watch takes the shape it maintains in the later stories and Carrot meets Angua. I'll never look at a Clown the same way. Read it, and consider how guns warp their users.
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VINE VOICEon 17 October 2014
This is classical Terry Pratchett and if you like his other books you will like this one. It made me laugh quite a lot and he makes the characters stand out of the page. It might be fantasy but sometimes you just need to escape from reality. These books are well written and highly entertaining.
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on 1 April 2017
If you read that, you don't need to read that.
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on 11 June 2017
As always Mr Pratchett has revealed that his finger is well and truly on the pulse of humanity's funny bone
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