Monday, July 13, 2015

Jax Reviews ~ The Last Continent & Going Postal ~ Terry Pratchett

The Last Continent (Discworld, #22; Rincewind #6)The Last Continent
Discworld #22
Release Date: February 1, 2006
Genre: Science Fiction/Fantasy
Source: Borrowed from Library
Rating: 4.5 Bookworms

Synopsis
'Anything you do in the past changes the future. The tiniest little actions have huge consequences. You might tread on an ant now and it might entirely prevent someone from being born in the future.'

There's nothing like the issue of evolution to get under the skin of academics. Especially when those same academics are by chance or bad judgement deposited at a critical evolutionary turning point when one wrong move could have catastrophic results for the future. Unfortunately in the hands of such an inept and cussed group of individuals, the sensitive issue of causality is sadly only likely to receive the same scant respect that they show to one another...


Going Postal (Discworld, #33; Moist von Lipwig, #1)Going Postal
Discworld #33
Release Date: September 27, 2005
Genre: Science Fiction/Fantasy
Source: Borrowed from Library
Rating: 5 Bookworms

Synopsis
Arch-swindler Moist Van Lipwip never believed his confidence crimes were hanging offenses - until he found himself with a noose tightly around his neck, dropping through a trapdoor, and falling into...a government job?

By all rights, Moist should have met his maker. Instead, it's Lord Vetinari, supreme ruler of Ankh-Morpork, who promptly offers him a job as Postmaster. Since his only other option is a nonliving one, Moist accepts the position - and the hulking golem watchdog who comes along with it, just in case Moist was considering abandoning his responsibilities prematurely.

Getting the moribund Postal Service up and running again, however, may be a near-impossible task, what with literally mountains of decades-old undelivered mail clogging every nook and cranny of the broken-down post office building; and with only a few creaky old postmen and one rather unstable, pin-obsessed youth available to deliver it. Worse still, Moist could swear the mail is talking to him. Worst of all, it means taking on the gargantuan, money-hungry Grand Trunk clacks communication monopoly and its bloodthirsty piratical head, Mr. Reacher Gilt.

But it says on the building Neither Rain Nor Snow Nor Glom of Nit...Inspiring words (admittedly, some of the bronze letters have been stolen), and for once in his wretched life Moist is going to fight. And if the bold and impossible are what's called for, he'll do it - in order to move the mail, continue breathing, get the girl, and specially deliver that invaluable commodity that every human being (not to mention troll, dwarf, and yes, even golem) requires: hope.



*****Jax's Reviews*****
(Discworld series books can be read standalone)

This summer, the libraries in Jeffco (Jefferson County, Colorado) are holding a “Read 1,000,001 Minutes!” thing (for all of Jeffco, not for each person). As of now, we have surpassed 3 million, and the library hurriedly came up with a “Great! Now go for 10,000,000 Minutes!” To do my part, I decided a library would be a much better method of reading books I haven’t read before in bulk without buying them; not to mention that my bookshelves are so crowded I had to forgo alphabetization for fitting them on double sidedly. This turned out to be a very easy way of reading more Terry Pratchett.
I loved Douglas Adams when I was in, oh, probably third to sixth grade - so three years, but by then I had read the five-part trilogy so many times that I needed something new. And I found Terry Pratchett. The world was exciting and new, with a different twist in the voice. Also, and even better, there was a live author that could write more! (Of course, not anymore; RIP, Terry). I read the first book: The Colour of Magic, and fell in love. Later, I was enchanted by the ever twisting and connected plotlines of Unseen Academicals, and got Dodger, which takes place in Victorian London, for summer reading.
Seeing as I’ve rambled long enough, I got two books I hadn’t read yet, The Last Continent and Going Postal. First, I read the former. It’s basically a parody of Australia: Rincewind the Unlucky Wizard, the protagonist of so many of the Discworld books, somehow got to the continent of Ecksecksecksecks, mercifully known as Fourecks, where it never rains, no plants grow, and the liquor is rather, er, unstable. Back at Unseen University, the leading educational center in Ankh-Morpork, the most loved professor, the librarian (who happen to be an orangutan), is sick, and the sickness is disrupting his magical field, causing lethal instability. The only way to cure him is to find his name, and that secret resides in Rincewind. The bumbling wizards venture off to find him, but end up in a rather different millennia, and enter one of the strangest oxymorons ever: the region of the god of evolution.
Rincewind doesn’t think of escape until he gets to that part. He’s stuck on the island, but one thing at a time: he needs to survive first. Besides being out in the desert where nothing grows, a mob of policemen are out to hang him for “stealing a sheep”. And to solve every problem he’s been having, he just has to make it rain for the first time since the creation of Fourecks, which won’t be easy, as he’s the worst magician that magic ever produced.
Death keeps Rincewind’s hourglass in a special spot on his desk. Strange tubes and curves come out everywhere, and sometimes the sand flows backwards. But he knows it’s coming...
A delightful blend between two different plots, each affecting the other, makes for a great read!

Now for the second one: Going Postal. It stars the character Moist Von Lipwig, who lives a life of playing off people’s trust, hope, and general stupidity. He never thought that he could be hanged for them--they were just petty crimes!-- until he found himself being hanged, and promptly thrown into a government job. Specifically, he becomes postmaster of the Ankh-Morpork post office. Being head of the post office means a lot of things, from challenging the giant “clacks” business (something like telegraphs, but faster) to finding a way to deal with the disturbing employees, to delivering the piles and piles and piles of letters stacked everywhere in the office. Finally, he must find out who he is, while juggling a huge amount of tasks--getting the girl, fighting the monopoly, staying alive, keeping everyone happy, and making sure the letters don’t get mad at him. Oh right. The letters, little slices of history that they are, are talking, and only delivery can silence them.
A magical blend of the classic Discworld and something that hits closer to the “real world”, Going Postal contains everything from Wizards to large corporations, from orangutans to golems, and everything in between.


5 comments:

  1. Great to see you were able to find a new author to read! Funny how Last Continent is set in my country! Sounds like an interesting read.
    Going Postal sounds like it's packed with a lot of great elements! I love magicians! Great reviews Jax!


    Naomi @ Naomi’s Reading Palace

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  2. This does sound wacky and whimsical! I am loving the names!

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  3. Ichabod TemperanceJuly 13, 2015 at 9:31 PM

    I love Terry Pratchett!
    I have read all the discworld novels except the most recent.
    'Continent' & 'Postal' get top marks.
    Cheers, Brandee!
    Happy Reading!
    ~Icky.

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  4. Terry Pratchett is a terrific writer. I need to reread him soon. Great reviews, Jax :)

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  5. I really need to try this author. You have me curious about both titles Brandee.

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