The prospect of the Big Match draws in a street urchin with a wonderful talent for kicking a tin can, a maker of jolly good pies, a dim but beautiful young woman, who might just turn out to be the greatest fashion model there has ever been, and the mysterious Mr. Nutt (and no one knows anything much about Mr. Nutt, not even Mr. Nutt, which worries him, too.)
As the match approaches, four lives are entangled and changed forever. Because the thing about footballï¿¿ï¿¿ï¿¿the important thing about football - is that it is not just about football.
Here we go! Here we go! Here we go!
©2009 Terry and Lyn Pratchett; (P)2009 HarperCollins Publishers
"At its heart, this is an intelligent, cheeky love letter to football, its fans and the unifying power of sports." (Publishers Weekly)
"In short, this is as busy and as daft as any other Discworld yarn, which means it is the quintessence of daft. Nobody writes fantasy funnier than Pratchett." (Booklist)
While not as laugh out loud funny as Thud or Going Postal, this latest Discworld romp skewers the worlds of academic tenure, sports, and high fashion, and has its fair share of chuckles. The dry, witty voice of narrator Briggs is uniquely suited to the material. Two thumbs and two big toes, straight up.
I've loved nearly all of Terry Pratchett's work, and this one is no exception. While his stories and characters have matured over the course of his career, it is nice to see him return to the wizards on Unseen University.
I'm not much a sports fan, so the football theme is not really my cup of tea, but this book did manage to make it fun and interesting to me. Seeing the character growth of Ponder Stibbins was a particular joy.
On the other hand, unlike several of the more recent Discworld books, this one does not really move the world plot forward at all. With Pratchett's career's end on the horizon, I hope to see at least some glimpse of the coming future of the Disc. In this sense, the book did not deliver.
...in that, he never takes a book off. Every once in a while, I see a title from him and it gives me pause "Football... or, in American culture, soccer...?" But, its Pratchett telling the story, and I read on. I was not disappointed in the least. UA is funny, entertaining and has the hallmark real-world undercurrent, this time its social justice, which always give his stories weight and substance. Since Terry has no peers, and thus it is impossible to compare his work against anything other than his previous work, I would give this book an 8 out of 10 on the Pratchett scale. Read it. In fact, read them all.
I'm still looking for the Discworld novel as good as Going Postal. This wasn't it. Also, I think it helps to be a soccer fanatic to truly appreciate the humor here. Because of the soccer story line, it took a while for me to warm up to this, but in the end I enjoyed it.
This story has got to be my favorite of all the Disc World stories thus far! Such lovely plot contortions and wonderful, full, REAL characters, no matter what species they are!
After a long wait we once again return to the disc. This is another fine Discword book staring a new main character Nutt (who I hope we see again) and the UU council, with appearances from other major discword persons such as Lady Margolotta, Sam Vimes, the low king Rhys Rhysson and even the luggage and DEATH.
It's not really about football, it's more about people and politics - and Vetinari. The wizards are main characters but there is also an exciting addition to the list of species/creatures individuals in AnkMorpork. As always, discworld is interesting, introspective and witty. Terry Pratchett is a literary genius and while this may not be his best (that would be saying a lot) it is definitely worth adding to your library.
Terry Pratchett is my favorite author of all time, and Unseen Academicals is one of my favourite books about the Disc. This was not the case, however, before I heard Stephen Briggs' performance. This books was meant to be read aloud by THIS performer. Every voice is distinct and exactly how I heard it when I read the book. Not only can Briggs' perform vocal pitches but he also created individual dialects and nuances that are amazingly realistic, even female voices.
There are only two narrators and authors I will listen to multiple times: Terry Pratchett read by Stephen Briggs and Richard Parks read by Brian Niishi. Outstanding.
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