The Colour of Magic by Terry Pratchett

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50 thoughts on “The Colour of Magic by Terry Pratchett

  1. You aren’t alone in this. I read this as well as a couple of the other ones in the series, and I could not get into it. Have you read any Christopher Moore? He’s the funniest I have ever read. Like, I had to put down the book I was laughing so hard.

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  2. I like the cover because it looks mischievous (corpses in the trunk?). The title makes it sound playful. And then it’s a comedy? A weird combination.
    I don’t really like reading comedy, either, because I am rarely able to connect with the humor.
    Have you seen the mini series? It looks like it has the potential to be funny, but I can see how the ridiculousness can overshadow the focus on that.

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    1. It’s pretty cool, mysterious and quirky! I’ve always been skeptical about comedy but I told myself that fantasy comedy might be fun. For now, this didn’t impress me but I’ll keep on trying. I haven’t seen the mini-series and will try it out after I finish book 2 since it’s what the mini-series covers. Not sure it aged too well compared to modern shows though hahah

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  3. I’ve read some of the other Discworld books before this one and fans agree Color of Magic isn’t a good start. Trust me, it gets A LOT better. I recommend you read “Guards! Guards!” or “The Hogfather”. There’s a much better blend of mystery, action and humor in those stories, the plots are more solid and the characters far more likable (Death in particular is a massive improvement).

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  4. Very interesting review Lashaan! I have heard a lot of good things about Terry Pratchett, but never read any of his books, so I was very curious to read your review when I saw your post! Now, I don’t know if I will like it as I am always a bit cautious when it comes to comedy/humour… Are you still motivated enough to read the sequels? Thanks for sharing anyway 😊

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    1. Thanks for reading, Juliette! It’s definitely not what you’d expect and will need to expect the unexpected to really enjoy the first book. Then again, you can start anywhere and the first book was often not recommended as first read. I’ll try more though since I own book 2 to 5 already anyways. Hopefully it will be a huge improvement!

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  5. Well, maybe try some of his Death sub-series? I really liked these first couple of books and enjoyed Discworld less and less the longer it went on. Most people I talk to think the opposite of me though 😀 Some of them even liked the Watch sub-series. No accounting for taste I guess 😀

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    1. I’m definitely most intrigued by Death so far and hope that’s where I’ll click with Pratchett. So far people have indeed told me the opposite (things get much better as you progress through this world) but I think I’ll be more sporadic with this universe or else I fear I’ll get tired of it quickly. 😂

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  6. I can certainly see your perspective and understand the humor not working. I’ve had issues with some books in the past that were supposed to be humorous, and also with some other British humor. But in this particular case I guess it worked for me. I enjoyed the book and almost thought of it as this crazy travelogue of some impossible country across the ocean. I think I’ve only read 2 Discworld novels so far, but I do hope to read more. I tried one of Pratchett’s short story anthologies (Where’s My Cow?) and had more issues with that, it didn’t work for me the way the novels have.

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    1. It’s pretty cool to hear that this worked a lot better with you than me and your description of it as a crazy travelogue is very accurate! I’ll have to power through a couple more books to really understand if it’s the humour, the stories, the universe or the writing that really doesn’t work for me but this still remains one of the most interesting reading experiences so far!

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  7. Ahoy there. This is how I feel about Pratchett and Moore and Dawson/Hearne. Not me type of humor I guess. Though I did like the first book of the hitchhiker series. But I be weird and laugh at the low brow humor in Shakespeare. It’s like movies. Not funny airplane, space balls, or the man-child humor of Seth Rogan type movies. Funny clue, galaxy quest, and the princess bride. Ye got me pondering and discussing books and types of humor with me First Mate. Arrrr!
    x The Captain

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  8. Earlier this year I tried to listen to the audiobook of The Colours of Magic more than 3 times and couldn’t get past the first 10%. I really like the concept of his Discworld series, so I’m still thinking of giving it another try. Maybe next year I’ll be able to buy the book and read it instead of listening 🙂

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  9. Having tried – and failed miserably – to read Good Omens, my project of reading the much-praised Terry Pratchett has suffered a little, so I’m comforted by the fact that not everyone can appreciate this kind of humor, which is notably a difficult beast to tame…
    Like you, I will make another attempt by trying out a Discworld book before throwing in the towel.
    Thanks for sharing! 🙂

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    1. I mean, I think if Good Omens didn’t work out so well, it’s probably going to be even tougher with Terry Pratchett’s Discworld, if you ask me. I hope to try Good Omens though since I feel like Neil Gaiman’s style might make Terry Pratchett’s humour more digestible… Hope our next attempt will be much better than our first!

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  10. Great! Prachett’s Death is probably the best personification of the concept/character I’ve read in recent years. In all fairness to Color of Magic, it was the first book in the series and one of Prachett’s first books, so the writing only improves from there.

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  11. It really isn’t the place to start your Discworld adventure… not right now, with all the other books published. That being said, I’ve read it first over 20 years ago, loved it instantly – and still do. For me, it’s a great parody of classic fantasy tropes, not on the level of later books, great satires of everything that’s wrong with our world, but still a little gem.

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    1. Yep. I remember when you recommended me to not start with The Colour of Magic too. I think I just need to power through a couple more of his books to really see if it’s just me and his humour or if it’s really him and his stories that don’t click with me. I’m still glad that there are MANY out there who adore his work. Maybe a re-read when I get much older will prove to be much more enjoyable. 😛

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      1. I’d recommend reading one of the industrial revolution books, just to see how you like it. If you disliked the first one that much, you’ll probably feel similarly about the second..

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  12. I adore Discworld! I am planning to re-read The Colour of Magic. Certainly it’s a certain type of chaotic humour (reminiscent of Douglas Adams?) and very British. It’s also satire of our own world dressed up as fantasy. At last you tried the book and now you know that the series is not for you 🙂

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      1. Yes! And I think perhaps his style changes a little throughout the series, as it ran for about 30 years?! You could always try a book dealing with different Discworld characters, like one which focuses on the witches. Equal Rites is the first to have witches in, if you were going through the series in order of publication.

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  13. Ohhhhh!! SO THAT’S WHY IT’S TITLED – Discworld!! 🤣🤣🤣😍😍

    But DAMNN!! SOO MANY SHOTS FIRED IN THIS REVIEWWW, Lashaan! 😉🤣🤣🤣 Well, I still love dreading it very much! I can’t say anything about it yet because I haven’t read it but the Discworld series is something I’ve been wanting to read for a long time, ever since I read Good Omens because MAN WAS IT A HILARIOUS READ! 🤣🤣🤣

    Have you read Good Omens then?

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    1. Hahahaha I had the same exact reaction as you when I read it! 😂 I haven’t read Good Omens but I’m keeping it on my list to be read at some point. But at least there’s more chances that you’ll enjoy this one if you didn’t have a bad time with Good Omens hahah I’ll however be taking a break from Pratchett for a little before I end up taking out the big guns against him if my next experience is just as uninspiring! 😂

      As always, thank you so much for reading, Rain! 😁

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  14. I haven’t read any of his books yet but have a couple someone gave me a while back. I’ve been worried about not liking them and being the only person in all of fantasy to feel that way. I don’t have this one though…so we’ll see.

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  15. Shame this wasn’t for you- but I will say this isn’t the best book- I think I liked it more when I read it cos it wasn’t the one I started with. I do recommend giving it another go, but I personally think it’s better to start with Mort or Guards Guards… if you’re not totally put off that is!

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    1. Yep. I know how much you enjoy his books, especially some of the later ones. I won’t give up just yet but hopefully I’ll find one that will impress me! Thanks for the recs, I remember Mort being one of your suggestions to me back when I asked you about which books I should give a try too hahah

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  16. Hahahaha I always love the reviews of the books you didn’t like 😂😂 The absurdity of the universe you describe really made me think about British humour and one of my favourite movies (Holy Grail)😂 I totally agree with you, humour is so subjective, too bad this didn’t work for you! 😢 But will you still watch Holy Grail with me? 😌

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  17. Stick with it. Personally I found Colour of Magic and Light fantastic funny BUT they are two of the weakest. Where Pratchett really shines is his insight into humanity (trust me their is a poignant Pratchett quote for literally every occasion) whilst their are elements of this in the first few books they are less obvious.

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    1. I really appreciate the stamp of approval on his subsequent books. It definitely gives me hope that I’ll love something written by this man in the near future! Thank you so much for reading and cheering me into pursuing my foray into Discworld! 😁

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