What Terry Pratched book is good to start?

I’ve heard much about Terry Pratched and I’d like to check him out. I actually own “Strata” and have just started it this morning but before I go any further, I want to make sure there aren’t better ones to start with, or, specifically, I want to make sure that I’m not starting in the middle of a series since I know a lot of his books are written as part of a larger series.

good question. I would love to know what the first book is called too. I was going to start reading Small Gods.

There are much better ones to start with. The Colour of Magic, Pyrimids, Guards!Guards!, Reaper Man, Mort, Wyrd Sisters, Small Gods, are all better ones to start with.

I suggest Pyramids, I started with it. It is a stand alone discworld novel. The Colour of Magic starts the Discworld series if you would like a more conventional starting place.

The discworld series really has no particular order, they all just take place on discworld, but if you read them in the order they were written, you’re probably better off, as there are few allusions in later books to previous instances. Nothing major of course. My favorite is “The Colour of Magic”, or “Mort”. No matter, they’re all good.

The very first Discworld novel is The Color of Magic. However, Pratchett is delishiously wonderful about making all of his Discworld novels self-sufficient. You can pretty much pick up any one of them and have a good read.

That being said, Small Gods is one of his very best. I’m also enamored of the Discworld novels that center on the Night Guard of Ankh-Morpork and also the Three Witches’ stories. The guard books begin with Guards! Guards!. Perhaps my brother, the lurker Rincewind, will stop by to give a few more pointers.

The other book you should definitely get ahold of is Good Omens by Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman.

This Terry Pratchett site might help you as well.

Terry Pratchett is my favorite author! He has written the Gnomesd books and the johnny Maxwell trilogy, but he is most famous for the Discworld books. If you want to read his books from the beginning, start with The Colour of Magic. His first few books are independent of each other plotwise, although they are set in the same world. With *
Wyrd Sisters*, he started integrating the plot of each book into the next one in the series.

Hey thanks guys.

Soul, good site.


I wouldn’t start with Strata. Pratchett is really most famous for the Discworld books, which are much funnier and more creative. (Strata’s OK, but it won’t give you TP at his best.)

The other suggestions are good. I started with Reaper Man and then read his books pretty much in order. Stand alone books include, Small Gods (one of my favorites), Pyramids, and Moving Pictures. Most of the others represent one of about 4 sets of continuing characters (Death and his “family”, Rincewind the wizard, Granny Weatherwax and the witches, and the Ankh-Morpork City Watch). You could read these out of order, but there is, increasingly, a lot you would miss.

You’re in for a big treat!

My girlfriend is a big Prachett fan and wanted me to start reading them. She gave me whichever one it is that’s set in pseduo-Australia and I got bored after about… oh… thirty pages. She assures me that there’s better books to start with, but I’ve yet to get enthused enough to pick one up. The fact that I drove her downtown to meet the guy and had him sign two books for her (as well as the three books she had signed for her) should already give me some leeway for having to actually read his works :wink:

By the way, the other book was for a poster on this board and if he doesn’t start posting more, he’s never going to see it. So nyeah. I might sell it on eBay instead :wink:

Oooh, oooh - Joph baby, sweetheart, lambikins. Can I make you an offer before it goes to eBay?

Moe - I thought you were going to read Atlas Shrugged next! (Start with Guards! Guards!)

If you really want a great book. Read “Good Omens” He did a great job! I am serious Read it you will not be disapointed.


Start with Wyrd Sisters. Trust me; I’m a professional.

  • Small Gods * is a great one to start. * Mort * too. However, once you’ve learned a little about Ankh-Morpork (that is, a book or two), go straight to * Jingo. *

What am I talking about, they’re all frickin good. I just started because I found a copy of one of my roomate’s books lying around. Now, I’ve read damn near all of them. Can’t wait to pick up * The Fifth Elephant * (the new one).

Ignore the gratuitous italics. HTML fails me again. ::sigh::

The books are a mixture of subseries and stand alones.

The Rincewind series centers around Rincewind, the worst Wizard on the Discworld. He is either very cowardly or very smart depending on your perspective. The books include:

The Colour of Magic
The Light Fantastic
Interesting Times
The Last Continent.

The Death series follows … Death. They include:

Reaper Man
Soul Music

The City Guards books center on the plice force of Ankh-Morpork, the largest Discworld city.

Guards, Guards
Men at Arms
Feet of Clay
The Fifth Elephant

The witches books follow a coven of witches. They are a mixture off the Brother’s Grimm and New Age types.

Equal Rites
Wyrd Sisters
Witches Abroad
Lords and Ladies
Carpe Jugulum

The stand alones are

Small Gods
Moving Pictures

I would recommend reading any of the stand alones or start with one of the series in order. Pratchett has written some other novels. My favorite is Good Omens, which has already been mentioned.

Trust Rincewind–he is, after all, named after one of the central characters.

Incidentally, when I first saw one of his posts, I could of sworn he was this guy I know who uses Rincewind in his email adress and is a comic freak (I saw your post about Hitman). Damn that freaked me out–I had to ask him, “have you been posting on the SDMB and I just didn’t know?”. :slight_smile:

Lots of good advice about where to start. I am just going to emphasize - DON’T start with Strata. I have read all of the discworld books that have been published in the US and enjoyed them all. I might not have bothered with any other Pratchett if I had read Strata first.

It is marginally interesting after reading the discworld books to see a little bit of Pratchett’s first conceptualizing about the general idea - so I don’t want to steer you away from ever reading the book. But, it has much less of a sense of humor than the discworld books do - it doesn’t drop you into the intriguing (and occasionally contradictory) lines of character development found in the books, and on the whole has a very different feel.

And also wicked parodies of Shakespeare.

The only book you shouldn’t start with is The Light Fantastic. It is a direct sequel to The Colour of Magic, so you need to read that first. All the rest stand on their own. Pyramids and Small Gods are the most independent, with characters that don’t appear in other books (other then Death, who, fittingly, is everywhere).

Another grouping of the books is the “tourist” theme, where Pratchett writes transports various Earth cultures to Discworld. They would be:

Pyramids (Egypt)
Interesting Times (China)
Jingo (Arabia)
The Last Continent (Australia)

The only book that falls flat is Moving Pictures. You can’t go wrong with anything else.

I rather like Pyramids and Mort myself. The former made me laugh the most and had more jokes that I actually consistently caught, the latter was a better story. I certainly don’t recommend starting on Pyramids, though.