At the start of 2019 I set myself a goal to read all 40 of the Discworld novels. My stepdad had the entire collection when I was growing up and I decided to give them a go, being a big fan of the fantasy genre and comedy.
I’ve ultimately failed on this, as we finished 2019 and I’m still reading ‘The Truth’, so I’m just over half way through. I’m now hoping that I’ll have them all finished by the end of 2020.
Out of the books I’ve read I’d say those involving The Witches and The Watch are my favourite.
When read in order the novels are a continuing timeline of the Discworld and during certain novels particular concepts get introduced such as the cinema (Moving Pictures), policing (Guards, Guards), newspapers (The Truth) and Rock & Roll (Soul Music); which re-occur in other novels. This really helps weave a narrative that pays off when you read them in this order.
There is another way to read the books (although I’m not doing this) which is to read all the books revolving around a certain character or theme but I imagine this approach would be rather hard due to the jumps in world construction that happen between the different novels.
At the time of writing I would say my favourite novels I’ve read are:
- Witches Abroad — I really liked the idea of The Witches being some of the first tourists travelling abroad and really enjoyed Nanny Ogg’s descriptions of the different places they visited in her postcards back home
- Carpe Jugulum — I really enjoyed this book. As a fan of horror and vampires I really liked seeing the various tropes in the Discworld and how the Igor would explain the traditional approach he’s previous master would have
- Small Gods — The way this novel approached organised religion was quite fun with the protagonist being the only true believer of his religion and his god being in the form of a tortoise
- The Last Continent — It started off a bit slow but I came to really enjoy the parody of Australian culture and slang as well as the more technical wizard working in a god’s workshop but being unable to handle it
- The Truth — I really like the character of Otto the vampire who is dedicated to honing a craft that ultimately ‘kills’ him every time he does it
I’m really looking forward to reading the rest of the novels and will of course do a final round up at some point in 2020 when I’ve done it.
At the time of writing I’m currently reading the 33rd book — Going Postal, which revolves around the restoration of the Post Office in Ankh-Morpork.