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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 14 June 2013
as always cannot recommend too highly but the I am a Terry Pratchett fan. This story had my favourite guards in, who bumble through life with such a cheerful air that you cannot help but be cheered up
.All the Watch chasing a new weapon, all the guilds involved,and superbly narrated by Tony Robinson with such skill as to make the characters come to life.What more could you ask for.
Pratchett has such a skill with words, interpreting them literally. If you haven't read/ listened to him please, please do so. You will not be disappointed.
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on 1 April 2018
To the men (and assorted others) of the Watch as they take on the deadly gonne and keep the city safe.
Weddings, swords and a werewolf.
What’s not to like?
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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 20 June 2014
I love Terry Pratchett's Discworld,every book has been brilliant but,i have to say that my favourite books out of all the various characters are based around the City Watch (the Death books being a close second) and Men at arms is probably the best.Not much else to say without telling you the story but if you like TP and the Discworld,you can't go wrong with this book.
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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 20 March 2018
If ever disc world needs a new patrician Carrots your man. Read this book to understand why, along with how to get the better of Vines.
Sadly the watch will not now expand any further.
What an opportunity missed.☺
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