Magazine topic: 

The Discworld

by : 
Catherine Foster

Floating through space on the the backs of four elephants, which in turn are standing on a giant turtle, the Discworld is Terry Pratchett's masterpiece. Its inhabitants are colourful characters who come from the white fields of the Chalk, the werewolf- and vampire-infested woods of Uberwald or from the smelly, busy and dirty city of Ankh Morpork. From the jovial, one-toothed Nanny Ogg to the bulk of orange ape that is the Librarian (the product of a not-so-unfortunate magical accident), the Discworld's characters amble from page to page in no particular haste, yet with a habit of causing a significant amount of destruction in their wake. The mention of Granny Weatherwax and the Ramtop witches causes even the most stupid of trolls to quake in its boots. Even the long suffering Death is an agreeable character, if a little tragic. Where else apart from on the Discworld would Death adopt a daughter and go AWOL? Or build a swing for his granddaughter and bounce her on his knee?

And haven't we heard this story somewhere before; a tale of three witches and ghosts and revenge? Something is afoot in the Ramtop Mountains and after a bit of cackling around the cauldron and a few cups of tea, Pratchett takes his witches on tour to a land of gumbo, voodoo and a dose of 'Once Upon a Time' and the magic of mirrors. Little blue men run around in not many clothes shouting 'crivens' and threatening to chop off toes and a wee bit more if a 'big job' gets too close for comfort. In the city of Ankh Morpork the older wizards of Unseen University eat their breakfasts at noon and try not to do any magic at all. The younger wizards eat their breakfasts at noon too, but as they are busy finding ways to enter different times and worlds, no one knows exactly when or where noon is.

The Discworld can be found in the thirty-nine Discworld novels that Terry Pratchett has written to date, plus in many extra books written as a guide to the series. The books have been translated into thirty-seven different languages and Pratchett has sold over sixty-five million books worldwide. This is not surprising; these novels are very funny and sometimes embarrassingly so, and may make you laugh out loud in a public place. They are also very real, even though the characters are so eccentric. The books are sometimes a little bit sad too, but never for long and soon you are whisked back into the middle of the party, and Nanny Ogg is stepping up to sing the Hedgehog Song. Take a deep breath, cover your ears and read on, dear reader, read on.


Have you heard of the Discworld?

Write and tell us about your favourite magical book.


Silvermist's picture
Silvermist 3 January, 2016 - 09:56

I've heard of it but haven't read it.
My favourite magical books are
1.stardust by Neil gaiman
3.mortal instruments.

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Harabeli Supersweet's picture
Harabeli Supersweet 2 November, 2013 - 06:16

No, I haven't. My favourite magical book is the series of "The Child of the Sixth Moon" by Moony Witcher. I never get tired of reding these magical books. They can make me part of a fantastic world.

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Natalija's picture
Natalija 13 July, 2013 - 12:13

I am not a big fan of Discworld, but I have heard of it. When I was little, I used to read some books of this kind, and my fave was the Wonderful Wizard of Oz, by L.Frank Baum. I think there is no a person who have not heard for it, or at least watched some of many TV adaptations, although I think that those adaptations can just ruin the novel. But this book is really good and it was one of my fave books when I was little.

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