It is a truth universally acknowledged that a policeman taking a holiday would barely have had time to open his suitcase before he finds his first corpse.
And Commander Sam Vimes of the Ankh-Morpork City Watch is on holiday in the pleasant and innocent countryside, but not for him a mere body in the wardrobe. There are many, many bodies and an ancient crime more terrible than murder.
He is out of his jurisdiction, out of his depth, out of bacon sandwiches, and occasionally snookered and out of his mind, but never out of guile. Where there is a crime there must be a finding, there must be a chase and there must be a punishment.
They say that in the end all sins are forgiven.
But not quite all....
©2011 Terry Pratchett (P)2011 Random House Audiobooks
From the way she acts when I take them off, I've a feeling my baby girl thinks I have headphones graphed to my skull.
There's an art to putting a lesson in a tale without slapping people upside the head with it and no one can do that better than Terry Pratchett. Mostly because the story is so entertaining you don't care. Oh Vimes! roaming around in the horrible fresh air knocking elbows and sometimes heads with the country folks, explaining women's lib to the pride and prejudice young ladies with all the delicacy we've all come to expect and reluctantly championing an oppressed people to boot. I find the only way to rate a Terry Pratchett novel is to compare it to other Terry Pratchett novels because for me they start at 5 stars whereas most other books have to start at a humble 1 star. That being said I loved this book almost as much as Thud! which is my very favourite of the Vimeocentric discworld novels. Stephen Briggs gives his usual wonderful performance, I love the brusque voice he does for Sam, it captures him for me completely. 10 stars!
I have read every Terry Pratchett novel, but this is the first one I’ve gotten on audio. Fans, be prepared for a sleepless night as once I started listening, I couldn’t stop. One of the best stories yet. Characters that you can relate to in a fast paced story that has just enough twists to be interesting without winding you up in knots. No magic or wizards in this one, but Sam Vimes at his best, juggling the roles of husband, father, friend and policeman. A good starting book if you haven’t read any of the other disc-world novels. Just one more warning - you might not want to listen to this story when traveling on public transport as your uncontrolled laughter may upset some of the other passengers.
As always with a Discworld novel you know what you're getting; an excellent story populated with charming (and suitably villainous as the case may be) characters. This book might be a bit predictable by Pratchett standards - there's the seemingly bumbling young man in over his head, the downtrodden race, the out of touch nobles, the irredeemably evil villain - but ultimately mediocre Terry Pratchett is still excellent by any other standard. And this one is worth reading for the characters alone.
Yet again Stephen Briggs' narration makes the story come alive. I like reading the Discworld books on paper, but Briggs gives them a whole new dimension.
The only reason I can think of for not getting this straight away is if you haven't read the other City Watch Discworld books, in which case you would probably want to do that before getting to this one, as I can see it being slightly less comprehensible without knowing the back story.
In short: a must buy, as always.
I love every one of Terry Pratchett Discworld books.I am an addict and admit it. Knowing of Terry's precarious health I treat everyone of his new books as gift to be savoured. Too soon there will be no more new ones. I have all of his books in hard copy and all of his audio books in both abridged and unabridged versions. I enjoy Stephen Briggs narrative but to be frank I much prefer Tony Robinson's. His voices, I suppose because he is an comic actor, are so much better. I try to explain my love of these books to friends but they just don't get it. Until I heard a play on BBC radio of Guards Guards I never had heard of him. Once I heard the play I was hooked. I have even bought the few videos that are available of his books and wish they would make more of them.
Snuff has all my favourite characters in it including Death , Haverlock and Nobby. The relationship between Sam and Lady Sybil has grown and deepened and romantic that I am I can't help wishing they would have a daughter.
The ever resourceful Willikins has a much larger part in this book and
his back story made it possible to understand his various skills. I am hoping that in Sir Terry's next book we find a goblin on the Watch. A very satisfying read for every Discworld addict.
One thing I like about Terry Pratchett books is how you can read/listen to them many times and still enjoy them. As soon as I'd finished this novel, I went back to the beginning and listened to it again. And then again.
The City Watch stories are among my favourite Discworld yarns, and while Snuff isn't quite as good, in my opinion, as Thud and Night Watch, it is on the same level as Jingo and The Fifth Elephant -- which makes it definitely worth the purchase price.
I would recommend that you read/listen to Thud before starting Snuff since events that occurred in Thud are referred to often in Snuff -- though this is not essential.
Stephen Briggs does a great job of coming up with distinct voices for each of the large number of characters in both this novel and in the other Discworld books.
There is so much going on in a TP book that I listen at least twice to enjoy the story twice and to ensure that I haven't missed anything. I listen whilst driving and so don't always hear every word on the first listening. I really enjoyed the communications between Commander Vimes and his wife. I love their relationship and his respect for her. I enjoyed Willikins and his protection of these people. The way that TP tells a complex story about an impossible world whilst running a commentary on human nature always impresses. That he can do this whilst making you laugh is amazing. I enjoy both Briggs & Robinson/Robertson reading. They both bring the characters to life. They get the inflections right and have fun with accents and tone. I try to tell others how good it is to just listen and enjoy, and how it makes it much easier to follow the twists & convolutions of a TP tale.
Not quite, but then your imagination is always the most powerful thing. But it is a superb reading as always
Willikins is undoubtedly the star of this novel
Mr Briggs is a very fine narrator and he once again doesn't disappoint
Long time Pratchett fan and I do consider Snuff to be one of his finest novels in the discworld series
Goblins are not vermin, and no one whit intelligent should not be treated as such. And No One should commit murder on one whiled one Samuel Vimes is on holyday whit his wife and son.
It is said that a police man can never go any where whit out fining a crime, and that is certainly true when it coms to Sir Samuel Vimes, Duck of Ank. He can not simply stand there when Goblins are bing shipped off to some unknown place to as the locals say "make a honest days work" this leads to wild chases on hors back and on bouts.
And the storys about young Sam and his explorations in the natural world and Poo, his future and how he loves his father and mother. How Willikins finely is more than just a Butler.
To be fear all the books about Samuel Vimes is my favourite books. I love the caricature and the ones he have under his command.
I look for books with ideas on multiple levels, a good story, and a bit of fun.
If ever one needs an example of practice makes perfect, read an early Discworld novel and then read Snuff. With Snuff, the Pratchett pair have written a delightful, gracefully paced and poignant novel. It's full of humour too.
The story stars a frequent character in Discworld novels, Commander Sam Vimes. He has matured along with the books, but retained his core character that endears him to both myself and his wife Lady Sybil Ramkin. However, like all Discworld novels, the book contains a delightful ensemble cast, with Willikins, Chief Constable Upshot and Lady Sybil being just a few interesting people that I would love to know better.
In Snuff, Terry Pratchett has composed a well-paced plot that moves steadily along, introducing multiple threads, to eventually tie up many in an satisfying way. Snuff has none of the indulgent flights of fancy that appeared in some of the earlier novels, and just the right number of side-tracks.
Of course, like all good Pratchett novels, Snuff contains a light, but thoughtful meditation on several significant philosophical issues. Three that stuck in my mind are the 'rule of law', slavery and the treatment of minorities on the fringe of society. I can think of no more entertaining manner to consider a complex issue than read a Pratchett novel.
But let me not forget the lashings of humour that Snuff contains. In the course of Sam's journey into the countryside, Pratchett lovingly pokes fun at cricket, Jane Austin novels and the countryside itself.
With Snuff, the Pratchett pair have written their best novel yet!
I loved this story. The Vimes/Watch books are probably my favourites in the Discworld series and this novel continues the evolution of the Vimes' world. The way in which the tales of the various Watch characters have progressed is brilliant, with some really nice twists and turns in their sroty arcs that you can't see coming. The books are designed for readers to enjoy, as well as making you think about various broader concepts and ideas along the way. SImply brilliant.
"A welcome return of Sam Vimes"
I have not yet read or listened to a Disc World story that I haven't liked (and I have read almost all of them) and those involving Ankh-Morpork City Watch are my favourites. They appeal to all our family and have done since my 2 sons were 10 and 12 - they are now late teens and early twenties and still enjoying them. Terry Pratchet has managed to address many disappointing characteristics of human nature over the years, usually softened by humour and this is no exception. Perhaps Snuff is slightly predicatable, but the characters of Commander Sam Vimes, his family and entourage are all still entertaining.
Having run out of audiobooks for bedtime, I decided to listen to this again. Even a second time around in fairly close succession, I'm loving every minute! Admittedly, my habit of falling asleep for half an hour or so before waking sufficiently to turn off the iPod means that I've missed little bits when I re-wound to where I thought I'd left off, but I still find new nuances and subtle turns of phrase that I missed in the first listen, when I was following the storyline most closely. It's a delight to know the ending and listen for the more subtle pointers.
At first I was worried by the narrator not being 'Baldrick' but I got used to him and he's a master storyteller. He's got Igorth just right!
All in all, a masterpiece for Discworld lovers, and Terry Pratchett has clearly not let Alzheimers get to him yet!
This is the 1st Pratchett book that I have had in audio. I'm usually an avid reader of his works and was a bit dubious of how I would like it as an audio book. I really enjoyed it! Granted I agreed with a few other reviewers who felt it was a bit rushed by Stephen Briggs in places but overall I couldn't listen to it quick enough. It is yet another great book by Pratchett and it certianly made the hours traipsing up and down the motorways go alot faster. Would fully recommend.
"More true to life than fantasy should be!"
More true to life than fantasy should be! Relationships between a man and his wife and the love that keeps them together. Am I talking about me or Captain Vines? It was so funny to listen to that I often laughed out loud, and when you're listening to it on headphones I did get some strange looks.
A well thought out story with more than the usual level of clever humour.
"Pratchett at his finest"
If you love the watch series involving infamous duke of Ankh, Sam Vimes then this book is for you a tantilising satire of the watch going to Midsommer, if you love the discworld then you will love this latest installment...a must.
"Thoroughly entertaining book, as ever."
This was my first ever audio book, so I cannot really comment much on the narrator, other than I found him quite pleasant and enjoyed his style. I chose the new Terry Pratchett book, as it is the only one I had not yet read.
It started gently, as a fair few Discworld books do, but quickly gathered momentum and got really exciting. It was very funny - listening at bedtime probably wasn't the best plan, as quite often, I'd giggle myself out of my snoozey state. It featured many favourite characters, as well as lots of new ones, most of whom were quite lovable. I don't think there were any wizards though, I always miss them a bit if they aren't featured in a book somewhere!
I really enjoyed the book, and I would highly recommend it to any current Discworld fan - you can't go wrong.
"Classic Pratchett joy"
Wonderful blend of the dark, the magical and the poignant and witty, this was a great treat to listen to. Lovely narration. Don't doubt- just buy it. You'll love it.
"It's Pratchett so it's funny and full of heart"
I think that Sam Vimes is my favourite Pratchett creation (along with Granny Weatherwax). It's difficult for me to give a helpful review to anyone who is not fully immersed in the Discworld multiverse. Characters and situations have developed over so many years that I really can't tell if things are clear to a new reader.
So all I can say, as a Discworld fan, is I love Vimes, I adore his humane and anti-authoritarian (unless he's the authority in question, in what case, do as you're told!) attitude so I found this immensely enjoyable. It's funny, charming, egalitarian and humane so just left me with a big smile on my face.
I enjoy Stephen Briggs narration. He sort of sounds like Terry himself and suits the text well.
"You will love it!"
Sam Vines is back and going on he hols you will spend all the book gaspping and gigging fab.
Very good rendition of Discworld. All the humour and subtlety of Pratchett come through. I would recommend listening to this.
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