Book Reviews

A Blink of the Screen: Collected Short Fiction by Terry Pratchett

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List Price: £20.00

 

Hardcover: 320 Pages.

Published: 11 October 2012 by Doubleday

Edition: First Edition

ISBN: 0385618980

EAN: 9780385618984

In the four decades since his first book appeared in print, Terry Pratchett has become one of the world's best-selling and best-loved authors. Here for the first time are his short stories and other short form fiction collected into one volume. A "Blink of the Screen" charts the course of Pratchett's long writing career: from his schooldays through to his first writing job on the Bucks Free Press,; to the origins of his debut novel, "The Carpet People"; and on again to the dizzy mastery of the phenomenally successful "Discworld" series. Here are characters both familiar and yet to be discovered; abandoned worlds and others still expanding; adventure, chickens, death, disco and, actually, some quite disturbing ideas about Christmas,all of it shot through with his inimitable brand of humour. With an introduction by Booker Prize-winning author A.S. Byatt, illustrations by the late Josh Kirby and drawings by the author himself, this is a book to treasure.

Reviews

4.0 Stars4.0 Stars4.0 Stars4.0 Stars  by Debra Found

Great to Dip Into

This is a collection of short stories written by Terry Pratchett over his lifetime. These start in his teenage years and continue through to recent years.

The book is split into two sections, the Discworld stories & the rest. However some of the characters in the early non-Discworld stories are recognisable as early drafts of later Discworld characters. There is a particularly good short story containing a very early incarnation of Death. I also very much enjoyed a story which was obviously the birth  of the Nomes from the Truckers trilogy.

I enjoyed this book. The teenage work at the beginning of the collection is recognisable for what it is - quite basic & juvenile in it's style. However, they are still clever stories & it is nice to trace the development of Terry Pratchett's style as the stories progress.

The advantage of a short story is that it is a snapshot. The author can say what he wants to say very quickly & without in depth descriptions or character development. This worked well with the humerous stories as well as some stories which were clearly written with the sole intention of making a point. Whether you agree with the point being made or not, the stories are still well written.

I enjoyed reading this book very much. I do enjoy much of the author's non-Discworld work and was pleased that there was such a variety of stories. It was also nice to see old Discworld friends in a slightly different setting. There is a particulary amusing story about Nanny Ogg & Granny Weatherwax.

This was a good read & a classic book for leaving somewhere to be dipped into for a few minutes here & there.

 
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