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Night Watch: 07/08/09

Night Watch is the last of a bunch of Terry Pratchett's Discworld novels that my husband bought for me two years ago. As the title implies, it follows the Watch again with Vimes as the protagonist. This time, though, Vimes is doing double duty, having found himself back in time thirty years to train himself as a young recruit.

Ankh-Morpork was a much rougher city back then and it's on the brink of revolution. Vimes remembers this time and how his commanding officer, John Keel, kept him alive and taught him how to be a proper officer of the watch during these dangerous weeks. Now on the flip side, Vimes is in the role of John Keel and he doesn't feel like the hero he remembers.

As with so many of his later books, Night Watch is long. While the overdose of puns are missing the book still has pacing problems. There are some brilliant scenes that drew me right in but they were spread out between pages of Vimes's internal monologue or of the Watch milling around. I know that's what they do when they aren't being forced to work but this late in the series do I really need to be reminded of it?

Fans of time travel stories, the Watch books from the Discworld series and ravid fans of Terry Pratchett will enjoy Night Watch. Anyone who doesn't fit into any of those categories can safely give the book a pass.

Discworld novels in order of publication:

The Color of Magic (1983)
The Light Fantastic (1986)
Equal Rites (1987)
Mort (1987)
Sourcery (1988)
Wyrd Sisters (1988)
Pyramids (1989)
Guards! Guards! (1989)
Faust Eric (1990)
Moving Pictures (1990)
Reaper man (1991)
Witches Abroad (1991)
Small Gods (1992)
Lords and Ladies (1992)
Men at Arms (1993)
Soul Music (1994)
Interesting Times (1994)
Maskerade (1995)
Feet of Clay (1996)
Hogfather (1996)
Jingo (1997)
The Last Continent (1998)
Carpe Jugulum (1998)
The Fifth Elephant (1999)
The Truth (2000)
Thief of Time (2001)
The Last Hero (2001)
The Amazing Maurice and his Educated Rodents (2001)
Night Watch (2002)
The Wee Free Men (2003)
Monstrous Regiment (2003)
A Hat Full of Sky (2004)
Going Postal (2004)
Thud! (2005)
Wintersmith (2006)
Making Money (2007)
Unseen Academicals (2009)

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Comment #1: Saturday, July, 11, 2009 at 22:38:04


I've enjoyed the five or six Pratchett books that I've read. My favorite is definitely Going Postal. Too bad this one doesn't sound as entertaining.

Comment #2: Sunday, July 12, 2009 at 12:09:40


I haven't read Going Postal yet. My husband really enjoyed Night Watch and I certainly enjoyed parts of it. I just thought it needed tighter editing. I think you should give it a try. You might like it more than I did.

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