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The Bookish Owl – Guards! Guards! by Terry Pratchett

Guards! Guards! Terry Pratchett Collector's Edition

Next up is Guards! Guards! by Terry Pratchett.

If you have been following this blog, you will probably have noticed that I’m reading all the Discworld books in order. However, I’m also reading them in the lovely hardback Collector’s Edition, and the last few books will not be released in this edition until November.

Obviously, this does not mean I will take a break from Discworld. It just means that I get a chance to reread my favorites and that’s something I’ve been dying to do!

So yes, ‘Guards! Guards!’ is a reread for me, but I’m still ridiculously excited about it. It’s the first book in the City Watch series, and it’s got:

  • Dragons
  • Vimes when he was still only reluctantly doing his job
  • Carrot arriving in Ankh-Morpork and horrifying watchmen and criminals alike by insisting on upholding the law
  • Dragons
  • Sybil pursuing a highly confused Vimes
  • Errol the Swamp Dragon
  • Dragons
  • Vetinari getting locked up in his own dungeon and creating a spy network of rats
  • Carrot still thinking he’s a dwarf
  • …Dragons

The plot might not be as deep and multi-layered as the later books, but no one can convince me this isn’t the greatest Discworld book of all times.

Guards! Guards!
by Terry Pratchett

Here there be dragons . . . and the denizens of Ankh-Morpork wish one huge firebreather would return from whence it came. Long believed extinct, a superb specimen of draco nobilis (“noble dragon” for those who don’t understand italics) has appeared in Discworld’s greatest city. Not only does this unwelcome visitor have a nasty habit of charbroiling everything in its path, in rather short order it is crowned King (it is a noble dragon, after all . . .).

Meanwhile, back at Unseen University, an ancient and long-forgotten volume–The Summoning of Dragons–is missing from the Library’s shelves. To the rescue come Captain Vimes, Constable Carrot, and the rest of the Night Watch who, along with other brave citizens, risk everything, including a good roasting, to dethrone the flying monarch and restore order to Ankh-Morpork (before it’s burned to a crisp). A rare tale, well done as only Terry Pratchett can.

Guards! Guards! Terry Pratchett Collector's Edition

17 thoughts on “The Bookish Owl – Guards! Guards! by Terry Pratchett

  1. I really enjoyed Carrot in Guards! Guards! Though I’ll admit, I haven’t read many of the City Watch books yet, so I haven’t seen him much outside of that book…

    1. All the characters generally matures a lot – I had completely forgotten exactly how much of an embarrassment Vimes used to be and how improper Sybil was!

      1. That just makes the series more fun, I feel, to see how the characters grow and evolve from their origins! Something to aspire to in my own writing…

        1. True, true, but I must admit I’m enjoying this return to when everything was just complete chaos and incompetence… 😀

          1. The chaos and incompetence is admittedly a lot of fun!

  2. I listened to a BBC radio… um… audio book type thing of guards, guards recently. They gave carrot this really odd Scottish accent. It really affected me. Lol. In my mind and yes, I kinda get that in RPG’s etc dwarves often get the scots accent for some reason… and since carrot… is basically a dwarf, but yeah, I really struggled with it.

    1. Carrot with a Scottish accent…?
      Nope, that doesn’t work for me, either! In my mind, he’s got this very proper way of talking, always very neutral in tone.
      If I start imagining him with a Scottish accent from now on, I’m blaming you!

      1. I’m sorry! But I had to share my pain. And I know you’ll understand. Also forgot what a drunken bum Vimes was in the beginning… ha ha.

        1. Sybil has nearly succeeded in making him respectable!

          1. Nearly…

            Now if they could only find someone for Nobby. Or Sgt Colon.

            1. Well… Sgt Colon is married… He’s probably as good as he gets.
              And I think Nobby might just need to stay Nobby. Some things are too risky to mess with.

              1. Ah Nobby, the kinda man that joins the army to loot corpses… 😀

                1. Nobby is basically everyone’s avatar in a fantasy RPG video game 😀

                  1. YES! You are totally right! Ha ha. Brilliant!

                    Admission. Just in the last two hours I have looted at least three corpses. Two of which I didn’t even cause to be there. hangs his head in shame

                    I am such a nob.

                    1. It doesn’t even matter if they only have awful loot you don’t need. You HAVE to loot them. It’s the way of the Nobby.

  3. I completely forgot about that Vetinari bit. Looks like I should repeat all the City Watch series. Carrot arriving to Ankh Morpork was HILARIOUS – he used to be my favourite characters for years (although now I’m not sure why…).

    1. Carrot was so much more fun in the earlier books! If I remember correctly, he also attempts to arrest Vetinari…?
      Pratchett toned his character down so much that it became more relatable, but much less memorable.

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