Summer in Discworld: Terry Pratchett Reading Challenge

Have you ever considered spending the summer with witches and wizards, dwarfs and trolls, a vampire photographer or even a walking piece of Luggage?  Care to visit a Post Office literally overflowing with mail, or to stroll beside the river Ankh?  (Actually, I wouldn’t recommend that last one during the warmer months; it’s a bit, shall we say, odorous!)

Come explore the Discworld (a disc carried on the back of four elephants, on top of a turtle) and add some hilarity to your summer by joining us for a Terry Pratchett Reading Challenge!

The “Challenge

Pratchett is consistently responsible for the funniest books I read each year, and I wanted to share the laughs.  This is a challenge only in the loose sense–all you have to do to participate is read any book from Pratchett’s sprawling 40-book Discworld series between June 1st and August 31st, and tell us about it.  I’m putting up a separate post where you can link to your reviews or share your thoughts in a comment.

Feel free grab the image above if you’d like to share about the challenge on your blog.  Maybe some of your friends will want to join in too.  If you need suggestions on where to begin reading, check out my earlier post on favorite Discworld books, or explore the comments to see what other people are planning.

For those new to Discworld, there are three rules to keep in mind:

1) You don’t have to read the books in order.

2) Don’t start at the beginning (the first few are funny, but weaker than later books).

3) Don’t read them somewhere where it will be awkward to laugh out loud!

Group Read

I’m also holding a Group Read of Going Postal during July (not a requirement of the challenge, just a fun bonus).  Going Postal won the group read poll, and is a great place for people to start out with Discworld.

Chapter One begins: “They say that the prospect of being hanged in the morning concentrates a man’s mind wonderfully; unfortunately, what the mind inevitably concentrates on is that, in the morning, it will be in a body that is going to be hanged.”

The plot: conman and criminal Moist von Lipwig inexplicably survives a hanging, only to find the Patrician offering him a goverment job, as Ankh-Morpork’s new Postmaster General.  Moist uncertainly accepts, becoming master of a Post Office overflowing with old mail (some of which seems to be talking to him), leading a troop of mad postmen.  And then there’s the business competition with the telegraph service to think about…

I’ve divided the book roughly into quarters to cover four weeks.  I’ll send out discussion questions early each week, and reviews should be planned for the following Tuesday.  Here’s the schedule:

Week 1, from “The Nine Thousand Year Prologue” through “Chapter 4: A Sign” – reviews on July 10

Week 2, from “Chapter 5: Lost in the Post” through “Chapter 7: Tomb of Words” – reviews on July 17

Week 3, from “Chapter 7A: Post Haste” through “Chapter 11: Mission Statement” – reviews on July 24

Week 4, from “Chapter 12: The Woodpecker” to the end! – reviews on July 31

Book Your Ticket to Discworld

Sign up for the “challenge” with MisterLinky below, and feel free to share in a comment what you’re thinking about reading.  Let me know also if you’d like to join the group read.

I look forward to visiting Discworld with you!

25 thoughts on “Summer in Discworld: Terry Pratchett Reading Challenge

  1. Pingback: Did Read/Will Read June/July 2012 « Buried In Print

  2. This goes so well with my own Pratchett reading challenge (spanning the whole year) that I will have to hop in. No harm in doing both and it’s about time I smacked myself over the head and stopped trying to read them in order because that’s why I previously stopped at Guards Guards (though Wyrd Sisters and Mort were FANTASTIC, as I remember). I do believe I have Going Postal so yay! Please remind me to start reading in time? xD

    1. Great! Glad to have you join in–I’m a big believer in doubling-up on challenges. 🙂 I’ll be sending out questions for the group-read discussion about a week before, so you can take that as a reminder.

  3. Pingback: What’s New to My Bookshelf #6 « The Bookworm Chronicles

    1. You can read them in order if you really WANT to…just be warned that the first few aren’t as strong as later ones. I’ll be posting soon about subseries within the larger series, if you want to try reading one subseries in order…

  4. Pingback: Summer in Discworld: Terry Pratchett Reading Challenge 2012 « The Bookworm Chronicles

  5. Pingback: Summer in Discworld: Terry Pratchett Reading Challenge « Mervi's Book reviews

  6. Pingback: Summer In Discworld: A Challenge & Group Read « Under My Apple Tree

  7. What a good idea! It sounds like fun, and a great way to get readers participating and interacting on the blog. I’ve been meaning to read some Terry Pratchett, and thought I’d take a few on vacation with me this summer. I won’t be able to post any reviews until I get back, though!

  8. Sarah

    I’m in too! I have a whole stack of Discworld waiting to be read and can’t wait! I probably won’t do the group read since I just finished Going Postal but I would love to read what everyone else thinks about it and will comment on other’s blogs during the group read.

    1. Having a stack of Discworld novels on hand sounds like the perfect way to start the challenge. Looking forward to your reviews, and your unofficial thoughts on Going Postal.

  9. I’m in! It will be fun. I’m planning on reading Thud!, since I already own it, and will strongly consider trying to do the Going Postal read. May not work out with other reading commitments that I have, but that opening line sure is tempting.

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