Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Book Review: Raising Steam by Terry Pratchett

Terry Pratchett's Discworld series is an impressive beast: it totals 40 books, the first of which was published in 1983. Even though I've been a Pratchett fan for a while, I'm still working my way through them.

Raising Steam is the latest installment in the series.  It chronicles the arrival of the railway to Discworld. Dick Simnel, building on the work of his father, manages to harness the power of steam to create the Iron Girder, a prototype of the steam locomotive. With the help of Harry King, and later, Moist von Lipwig, the railway starts criss-crossing the world. However, getting the rest of Discworld on board (I'm sorry) proves to be quite difficult.

Pratchett tends to be a divisive writer: some people love him, others wonder why people read his work, and I don't think this will change any minds.  This novel is definitely in the classic Pratchett style, and, as you are probably able to tell, this is fine by me. This book is still as funny and pertinent as his earlier work.

This novel brings us another installment in the exploits of Moist von Lipwig, Lord Ventari, and Adora Belle Dearheart, among others, and the returning characters are just as charming and fun as usual. Not all of the characters grow and change, but there is still enough character development to keep the story engaging.

The plot is based on an interesting premise.  However, there are some points where it seems to drag a bit, and some of the plot development could have been set up better.

Chance of finding it in my imaginary bookstore? 90%