Tuesday, January 25, 2000

Review: "Hogfather" by Terry Pratchett

It's too bad that I couldn't get this review up before Christmas, or Hogswatch to Discworld fans. It's the kind of book that can help put you in a lighter mood during the holiday season, but I think you can enjoy it just as much after the holidays are over.

Everyone who's familiar with the Discworld is familiar with its anthropomorphic personifications, particularly its most (or least) popular one - Death. In this novel, the Hogfather has gone missing, and if Death doesn't fill in, delivering gifts to children all over the world, "the sun will not rise".

Throw in Death's granddaughter, Susan, the Oh God of Hangovers, the Cheerful Fairy, and an assassin named Mr. Teatime (that's Teah-tim-eh), who has been hired by a group known as the Auditors to kill the Hogfather, and you have a wickedly funny tale as only Pratchett can tell it.

I have to say that I've been a little disappointed with some of Pratchett's more recent efforts, compared with his early works, but this book had me in tears I laughed so hard. It's not his best, but it's definitely a worthy addition to the Discworld collection.

It's truly a shame that us fans in the US have to wait so long for Pratchett's books. This volume has been out in Europe for quite some time. Fortunately, though, he continues to make them worth the wait.

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