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Pratchett, Terry

Sir Terence David John "Terry" Pratchett, OBE (born 28 April 1948) is an English novelist, known for his frequently comical work in the fantasy genre. He is best known for his popular and long-running Discworld series of comic fantasy novels. Pratchett's first novel, The Carpet People, was published in 1971, and since his first Discworld novel (The Colour of Magic) was published in 1983, he has written two books a year on average. His latest Discworld book, Snuff is the third fastest selling novel since records began in the United Kingdom selling 55,000 copies in the first three days.

Pratchett was the UK's best-selling author of the 1990s, and as of August 2010 had sold over 65 million books worldwide in thirty-seven languages. He is currently the second most-read writer in the UK, and seventh most-read non-US author in the US.

Pratchett was appointed Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) "for services to literature" in 1998. In addition, he was knighted in the 2009 New Year Honours. In 2001 he won the Carnegie Medal for his young adult novel The Amazing Maurice and his Educated Rodents.

In December 2007, Pratchett publicly announced that he was suffering from early-onset Alzheimer's disease and, subsequently, made a substantial public donation to the Alzheimer's Research Trust, and filmed a programme chronicling his experiences with the disease for the BBC.

  • Pratchett, Terry

    Making Money

    Amazingly, former arch-swindler-turned-Postmaster General Moist von Lipwig has somehow managed to get the woefully inefficient Ankh-Morpork Post Office running like . . . well, not like a government office at all. Now the supreme despot Lord Vetinari is asking Moist if he'd like to make some real money. Vetinari wants Moist to resuscitate the venerable Royal Mint—so that perhaps it will no longer cost considerably more than a penny to make a penny.

    Moist doesn't want the job. However, a request from Ankh-Morpork's current ruling tyrant isn't a "request" per se, more like a "once-in-a-lifetime-offer-you-can-certainly-refuse-if-you-feel-you've-lived-quite-long-enough." So Moist will just have to learn to deal with elderly Royal Bank chairman Topsy (née Turvy) Lavish and her two loaded crossbows, a face-lapping Mint manager, and a chief clerk who's probably a vampire. But he'll soon be making lethal enemies as well as money, especially if he can't figure out where all the gold has gone.

  • Pratchett, Terry

    Going Postal

    Suddenly, condemned arch-swindler Moist von Lipwig found himself with a noose around his neck and dropping through a trapdoor into ... a government job?

    By all rights, Moist should be meeting his maker rather than being offered a position as Postmaster by Lord Vetinari, supreme ruler of Ankh-Morpork. Getting the moribund Postal Service up and running again, however, may prove an impossible task, what with literally mountains of decades-old undelivered mail clogging every nook and cranny of the broken-down post office. Worse still, Moist could swear the mail is talking to him. Worst of all, it means taking on the gargantuan, greedy Grand Trunk clacks communication monopoly and its bloodthirsty piratical headman. But if the bold and undoable are what's called for, Moist's the man for the job -- to move the mail, continue breathing, get the girl, and specially deliver that invaluable commodity that every being, human or otherwise, requires: hope.

  • Gaiman, Neil & Pratchett, Terry

    Good Omens

    There is a distinct hint of Armageddon in the air. According to The Nice and Accurate Prophecies of Agnes Nutter, Witch (recorded, thankfully, in 1655, before she blew up her entire village and all its inhabitants, who had gathered to watch her burn), the world will end on a Saturday. Next Saturday, in fact. So the armies of Good and Evil are amassing, the Four Bikers of the Apocalypse are revving up their mighty hogs and hitting the road, and the world's last two remaining witch-finders are getting ready to fight the good fight, armed with awkwardly antiquated instructions and stick pins. Atlantis is rising, frogs are falling, tempers are flaring. . . . Right. Everything appears to be going according to Divine Plan.

    Except that a somewhat fussy angel and a fast-living demon -- each of whom has lived among Earth's mortals for many millennia and has grown rather fond of the lifestyle -- are not particularly looking forward to the coming Rapture. If Crowley and Aziraphale are going to stop it from happening, they've got to find and kill the Antichrist (which is a shame, as he's a really nice kid). There's just one glitch: someone seems to have misplaced him. . . .

    First published in 1990, Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett's brilliantly dark and screamingly funny take on humankind's final judgment is back -- and just in time -- in a new hardcover edition (which includes an introduction by the authors, comments by each about the other, and answers to some still-burning questions about their wildly popular collaborative effort) that the devout and the damned alike will surely cherish until the end of all things.

  • Pratchett, Terry

    The Fifth Elephant

    Everyone knows that the world is flat, and supported on the backs of four elephants. But weren't there supposed to be five? Indeed there were. So where is it?...

    When duty calls. Commander Vimes of the Ankh-Morpork constabulary answers. Even when he doesn't want to. He's been "invited" to attend a royal function as both detective and diplomat. The one role he relishes; the other requires, well, ruby tights. Of course where cops (even those clad in tights) go, alas, crime follows. An attempted assassination and a theft soon lead to a desperate chase from the low halls of Discworld royalty to the legendary fat mines of Uberwald, where lard is found in underground seams along with tusks and teeth and other precious ivory artifacts. It's up to the dauntless Vimes -- bothered as usual by a familiar cast of Discworld inhabitants (you know, trolls, dwarfs, werewolves, vampires and such) -- to solve the puzzle of the missing pachyderm. Which of course he does. After all, solving mysteries is his job.
  • Pratchett, Terry

    Night Watch

    One moment, Sir Sam Vimes is in his old patrolman form, chasing a sweet-talking psychopath across the rooftops of Ankh-Morpork. The next, he's lying naked in the street, having been sent back thirty years courtesy of a group of time-manipulating monks who won't leave well enough alone. This Discworld is a darker place that Vimes remembers too well, three decades before his title, fortune, beloved wife, and impending first child. Worse still, the murderer he's pursuing has been transported back also. Worst of all, it's the eve of a fabled street rebellion that needlessly destroyed more than a few good (and not so good) men. Sam Vimes knows his duty, and by changing history he might just save some worthwhile necks—though it could cost him his own personal future. Plus there's a chance to steer a novice watchman straight and teach him a valuable thing or three about policing, an impressionable young copper named Sam Vimes.

  • Pratchett, Terry

    Monstrous Regiment

    War has come to Discworld ... again.

    And, to no one's great surprise, the conflict centers around the small, arrogantly fundamentalist duchy of Borogravia, which has long prided itself on its unrelenting aggressiveness. A year ago, Polly Perks's brother marched off to battle, and Polly's willing to resort to drastic measures to find him. So she cuts off her hair, dons masculine garb, and -- aided by a well-placed pair of socks -- sets out to join this man's army. Since a nation in such dire need of cannon fodder can't afford to be too picky, Polly is eagerly welcomed into the fighting fold—along with a vampire, a troll, an Igor, a religious fanatic, and two uncommonly close "friends." It would appear that Polly "Ozzer" Perks isn't the only grunt with a secret. But duty calls, the battlefield beckons. And now is the time for all good ... er ... "men" to come to the aid of their country.

  • Pratchett, Terry

    Unseen Academicals

    The wizards at Ankh-Morpork's Unseen University are renowned for many things—wisdom, magic, and their love of teatime—but athletics is most assuredly not on the list. And so when Lord Ventinari, the city's benevolent tyrant, strongly suggests to Archchancellor Mustrum Ridcully that the university revive an erstwhile tradition and once again put forth a football team composed of faculty, students, and staff, the wizards of UU find themselves in a quandary. To begin with, they have to figure out just what it is that makes this sport—soccer with a bit of rugby thrown in—so popular with Ankh-Morporkians of all ages and social strata. Then they have to learn how to play it. Oh, and on top of that, they must win a football match without using magic.

    Meanwhile, Trev (a handsome street urchin and a right good kicker) falls hard for kitchen maid Juliet (beautiful, dim, and perhaps the greatest fashion model there ever was), and Juliet's best pal, UU night cook Glenda (homely, sensible, and a baker of jolly good pies) befriends the mysterious Mr. Nutt (about whom no one knows very much, including Mr. Nutt, which is worrisome . . .). As the big match approaches, these four lives are entangled and changed forever. Because the thing about football—the most important thing about football­—is that it is never just about football.

  • Pratchett, Terry

    Thud!

    VOTED AS READERS' FAVOURITE DISCWORLD NOVEL IN THE DISCWORLD CUP 2010! 'Some people would be asking: whose side are you on? If you're not for us, you're against us. Huh. If you're not an apple, you're a banana'When it comes to racial hatred and sectarian violence, the phrase 'vive la difference' is usually one of the furthest from the tip of the mob’s tongue. When a whole city is poised on the very brink of anarchy, it only requires one thing to pitch it over the edge. Like the murder of one of the key participants for example...