Pratchett, Terry: (01-02) The Colour of Magic and The Light Fantastic

Becca is re-reading Discworld one book every two weeks, which sounds like a good plan to me. She started with The Colour of Magic and The Light Fantastic together, which surprised me because I’d forgotten just how much of a cliffhanger Colour ends on. From this you can tell that I read these back in college when I first binged on Discworld and possibly not since.

I’m kind of amazed I made it past Colour, actually: I must have gotten a big stack out of the Boston Public Library and been warned that the first wasn’t very typical. Because wow, it really is not: it’s a series of pastiches/parodies of very specific things, and even the one of something I recognized (Pern) just was not my kind of thing. And yet Light, despite being as direct a sequel as possible, feels more or less like a Discworld book! Besides the things Becca points out, Light introduces the seeds of Mort, two books down the line, and Hogfather, a full eighteen books later. And of the two characters who were most jarring, Death stops being mad that Rincewind keeps cheating death and learns the card game bridge, and the Patrician (who can’t possibly be Vetinari, no matter what Pratchett has said extratextually) does not appear at all.

A very peculiar duology and only the place to start if you’re a completist (though I would be interested to hear how Light reads as a starting place, since I don’t think you really need to know much from the prior book to understand the action).

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