The Colour of Magic by Terry Pratchett
So, as most of you know, I’ve possibly made another crazy decision this year. I’m going to attempt to read every single book Terry Pratchett wrote in his lifetime. I was kindly given four Pratchetts by Sheffield BF’s son for my birthday. I’ve started with the Disc World series after buying the first two books for my Kindle using another birthday gift – an Amazon voucher.
When I was younger I often read Fantasy because it was a way for me to deal with the stresses and strains of everyday life. To some degree I think I chose to hide too deep within the covers of these books, using them to ignore issues I needed to address. Now that I’m older (and hopefully wiser) I choose to read a wider variety of genre rather than wallow too deep inside one. There are however occasions when I revert to my younger self and read Fantasy for pure comfort. With Pratchett’s work, I read them for pure enjoyment and the certain knowledge that at some point in my reading I am going to laugh out loud and possibly guffaw.
As with most of Pratchett’s books The Colour of Money [TCM] had me chuckling out loud on the bus again. I’ve seen the television adaptation of this and while the casting of David Jason as the unlikely hero Rincewind, is perfect in my view, I still prefer to read the book every time. I remember reading this quite a few years ago and I’m always thrilled that whenever I pick up a Pratchett I enjoy it as much in the second or third reading as I did in the first. The stories endure.
This is undoubtedly due to their universality and the cultural insights which run through them. For instance, TCM looks at several themes which were prevalent when Pratchett first wrote the book and are still very much in the forefront of people’s minds today; the desire to acquire, honour amongst thieves, the lure of money and so forth.
This book, like all Pratchett’s books, highlights a particular flaw in society with humour and great insight. I love this about Pratchett’s books. Another aspect of his books I absolutely adore is his inventiveness and how he turns ideas upside down. I also love how he emphasises that the imagination can get one out of some truly sticky circumstances as long as one remains conscious during the creative process.
My favourite characters in this first book of the Disc World series are DEATH and The Luggage. DEATH primarily because Pratchett’s way of writing all his dialogue in capital letters is so very fitting and right. The Luggage is a favourite because it is so relentlessly loyal. I could certainly do with A Luggage of my very own.
The cliff hanger ending pulls me towards the second book in the series and I’m very happy to follow where it leads. So onwards to The Light Fantastic.