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(P) ISIS Publishing Ltd, 1996; Copyright © Terry and Lyn Pratchett, 1994
I was disappointed by the audio quality of this book. It was clearly copied from a tape (at one point they failed to edit out a the narrator announcing: "side 3") This is fairly disappointing since you get low level white noise throughout the length of the book. Audible.com usually delivers books at almost CD quality, and this one was just not there.
The book itself is not one of Pratchett's best(still good though). The events in it follow those in "Mort" and "Reaper Man" and precede those in "Hogfather." You do not need to read those to enjoy this one though, the story stands up quite well on it's own.
The book was good: Susan and Death are pretty awesome, as are The Band With Rocks In boys. Maybe not one of Pratchett's best novels, but still entertaining.
However, as another reviewer pointed out, getting this on tape would have better quality than this version. It was obviously brought over from a set of cassettes, as it includes long pauses between the "tapes" (not the files). There is even an "end of cassette 1" type message at one point.
I was disappointed that I used a credit on this one. If I'd known about the quality in advance, I would have just picked up a copy of the book and skipped this recording until it was redone.
This is a good book but definitely NOT one of Pratchett's best (and I generally LOVE the books involving Susan and Death).
My main problem, other than the story itself-which, again, was good but not fantastic-was the narrator.
Nigel Planer makes Susan sound like a snob with a head cold. Considering the fact that she is featured prominently this gets annoying very quickly. As for the overall quality of the recording, it seems to me that ones with Stephen Briggs are SO much better (I have the electronic/iPod version).
I suppose it's a matter of taste (I really believe that Briggs does a better job at ALL the characters) but Planer's females are unforgivable.
Unfortunately, i've already downloaded all the Briggs read books so now i'm forced to go with Planner.
There's a whole lot of shakin' going on when a champion harpist goes to Ahnk-Morpork to pursue his musical genius. He quickly runs afoul of the Musicians' Guild and when a troll accidentally destroys his ancient harp, it looks like the big, wicked city has devoured another country boy. But instead, with the help of a dwarf horn player and an apologetic troll rock smasher, our hero goes in search for a another instrument. In a strange used instrument shop, he finds an ancient guitar and the Ahnk-Morpork has its first Guitar Hero.
When the guitar begins to play, music will never be the same. Groupies abound, wizards slick back their hair and channel James Dean, the Unseen University librarian gets funky on the organ, and Death's grand-daughter intercedes to save the ax-man from the traditional early death of guitar heroes.
Great fun for early Rock and Roll fans, as you play name that tune from the mono 45, Hot Wax days of rock.
Terry Pratchett rewrites music history in typical Disk world fashion.
Totally outa site.
Read it / listen to it and enjoy it. One of the best readings of Terry Pretchett's disk world novels available. You will never listen to music quite the same way again.
I listened to this after hearing of Sir Terry's passing, and it is everything I love about his books: witty, charming, insightful, and just when you think it is simple fluff, poignant enough to take your breath away. My only regret is that it is an old production and the sound quality newton.k12.vt.us editing detracts from the pure pleasure of the story.
This isn't my favorite book in the Discworld canon, but any book that brings us more about Death and Susan Sto Helit is worthwhile in my world.
I found the "music with rocks in" theme a little heavy-handed for my tastes. But listening to Nigel Planer is always fun. And Death gets to be awesome, as usual.
I want to be Susan Sto Helit when I grow up. Either her or Nanny Ogg. :)
This is one of the Death-oriented stories. It is the second Pratchett book I have read (the first being Mort), and it offers another delightful romp into his Discworld.
I enjoy this style of writing -- Pratchett is right up there with the irreverent, witty fun of Douglas Adams. While I cannot rate this book as highly as I did Mort, it was a good story. I did sense that this book (#14 in the series) was making some in-joke references that I wasn't able to appreciate, given the only other Discworld novel I had read was #4. However, my lack of familiarity of what (I assume) had happened in other books did not diminish my overall enjoyment of this story. However, if you haven't already, I strongly suggest you read the Mort book first, as there are a number of references there and the stories are linked.
And, if you are a "A Rectangular Thyng" who is completely unimpressed/unaware of Rock and Roll, you might want to give this one a pass too.
Otherwise, a fun, recommended book. And again, Nigel Planer, the narrator, does an AMAZING job. He alone makes the purchase worthwhile.
I really enjoyed this book and it drew many smiles and chuckles from me as I caught the jokes and word play. It was a little slow getting started, but once the story kicked in, it was very entertaining. If you like rock & roll, you'll enjoy all the references and side jokes. I thought of one friend immediately that I'd want to share the book with. I think it wouldn't have the same kick in printed form, though. The voices and reading are really great.
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