SOUL MUSIC by Terry Pratchett

SOUL MUSIC

KIRKUS REVIEW

Perhaps best considered as parody, with strong infusions of farce and satire, Pratchett's Discworld fantasies (The Light Fantastic, 1987, etc.) consist of elliptical jokes and mad puns delivered in an unobtrusive English accent, and move to their own inimitable logic. This time, Death (you know, skeleton, scythe, and so forth) becomes burdened by his infallible memory -- he can even remember things that haven't happened yet -- and, in an effort to forget, decides to join the Foreign Legion, whose members forget things, no problem, but only in their own particular fashion ("...you know...thing...clothes, everybody wears them...sand-colored"). While Death's away, his granddaughter, Susan, presently attending a posh finishing school, must take over his function. Susan has a helper, a rat-skeleton called the Death of Rats ("Do you just do rats, or mice and hamsters and weasels and stuff like that as well?...Death of Gerbils too? Amazing how you can catch up with them on those treadmills"). Meanwhile, talented musician Imp (from a place so wet that "rain was the county's main export. It had rain mines") has somehow acquired a magic guitar that plays utterly compelling Music With Rocks In It. Susan, scheduled to terminate Imp forthwith, finds herself unable to wield her scythe, thus threatening the magical stability of the entire Discworld. None of the peerless Pratchett's Discworld yarns are dull, and some are comic masterpieces. This one, unfailingly amusing and sometimes hysterically funny, is recommended for anyone with the slightest trace of a sense of humor.

Pub Date: Jan. 1st, 1995
ISBN: 0061054895
Page count: 400pp
Publisher: HarperCollins
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 1st, 1994




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