‘The Colour of Magic’ by Terry Pratchett

Let’s have a trip to Discworld.

Have you ever been there? It’s the strangest place, where everything seems just like you expect it to be, except it’s not.

Logic and common sense do not apply on Discworld, a flat earth carried through space on the back of four elephants, themselves standing on the back of a giant turtle, gender unknown (but focus of animated debates).

Here something amazing happens, when the very first tourist makes his appearance in Ankh-Morpork. He’s Twoflower, a rather chubby fellow who doesn’t speak the local language, but compensates by speaking his own, very loudly and slowly.

With him, his Luggage, a chest that carries all of his belongings and which seems to be equipped at times with hundreds of tiny legs, which it uses to follow its owner wherever he goes. And I mean WHEREVER.

To protect the first tourist, Rincewind, a wizard without a single drop of magic in his whole body. In fact, all spells have been chased away from his mind by one of the most dangerous spells in the universe. All in all, pretty useless, unless you want to blow up the entire Discworld (or something equally invalidating, anyway).

The one I liked the most, though, was Death, with its CAPITAL voice and dry sarcasm. Because despite being so useless, Rincewind is still a wizard, therefore it’s Death itself that shows up to take him away when the time comes. Yet, in the God’s long game, Rincewind is harder to kill than it looks and Death will have to show up remarkably often.

How Sir Terry Pratchett managed to imagine something so preposterous is something I can barely fathom. For sure, the world has to thank him for that.

And now that I have written this, I wonder what he would have answered to such a remark. Probably something on the lines of what he replied to his knighthood for services to literature, when he said that his greatest service to literature was to avoid writing any.

This in the light of 41 novel that made history, fair and square.

Right there.

For this and many other reasons, if you asked me to picture my Olympus of writers, Terry Pratchett would be the father of the Writing Gods, playing a lifelong board game with J.K. Rowling and Neil Gaiman.

If you want to know more about Sir Terry Pratchett, or about the Discworld series, you can visit the official website: http://www.terrypratchettbooks.com/

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