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Going Postal [Audio]
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Terry Pratchett puts his stamp on the new Discworld novel.

About the Author

Terry Pratchett was the acclaimed creator of the global bestselling Discworld series, the first of which, The Colour of Magic, was published in 1983. In all, he was the author of over fifty bestselling books. His novels have been widely adapted for stage and screen, and he was the winner of multiple prizes, including the Carnegie Medal, as well as being awarded a knighthood for services to literature. He died in March 2015.

Reviews

Simultaneous with the HarperCollins hardcover. Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.

"'His world, increasingly subtle and thoughtful, has become as allegorical and satirical as a painting by Bosch ... Pratchett's joy in his creations, in jokes, puns, the idea of letters and language itself makes GOING POSTAL one of the best expressions of his unstoppable flow of comic invention.'" The Times "'Like many of Pratchett's best comic novels, it is a book about redemption ... There's a moral toughness here, which is one of the reasons why Pratchett is never merely frivolous.'" Time Out "'With all the puns, strange names and quick-fire jokes about captive letters demanding to be delivered, it's easy to miss how cross about injustice Terry Pratchett can be. This darkness and concrete morality sets his work apart from imitators of his English Absurd school of comic fantasy.'" Guardian "'Terry Pratchett is one of the great makers of what Auden called 'secondary worlds'. His inventiveness - with people with plots, with things - is seemingly inexhaustible ... Pratchett can make you giggle helplessly and then grin grimly at the sharpness of his wit. Twelve-year old boys love him, but he himself is grown up. He knows that terrible things exist and happen, and he invents a benign otherworld in which we can face them, and laugh.'" A.S. Byatt, DAILY MAIL "'Pratchett ... is the missing link between Douglas Adams and J.K. Rowling. To non-initiates his work is gobbledygook, but dig deeper and you find the wit and imaginationthat have gained him a fanatical readership - among them is A.S. Byatt.'" FT MAGAZINE

British fantasist Pratchett's latest special-delivery delight, set in his wonderfully crazed city of Ankh-Morpork, hilariously reflects the plight of post offices the world over as they struggle to compete in an era when e-mail has stolen much of the glamour from the postal trade. Soon after Moist von Lipwig (aka Alfred Spangler), Pratchett's not-quite-hapless, accidental hero, barely avoids hanging, Lord Havelock Vetinari, the despotic but pretty cool ruler of Ankh-Morpork, makes him a job offer he can't refuse postmaster general of the Ankh-Morpork Post Office. The post office hasn't been open for 20 years since the advent of the Internet-like clacks communication system. Moist's first impulse is to try to escape, but Mr. Pump, his golem parole officer, quickly catches him. Moist must then deal with the musty mounds of undelivered mail that fill every room of the decaying Post Office building maintained by ancient and smelly Junior Postman Groat and his callow assistant, Apprentice Postman Stanley. The place is also haunted by dead postmen and guarded by Mr. Tiddles, a crafty cat. Readers will cheer Moist on as he eventually finds himself in a race with the dysfunctional clacks system to see whose message can be delivered first. Thanks to the timely subject matter and Pratchett's effervescent wit, this 29th Discworld novel (after 2003's Monstrous Regiment) may capture more of the American audience he deserves. Agent, Ralph M. Vicinanza. (On sale Sept. 28) Forecast: Despite sales of more than 35 million copies of his books worldwide, Pratchett has yet to become a U.S. bestseller. This one may finally break him out of category. Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.

Adult/High School-When petty con man Moist von Lipwig is hung for his crimes in the first chapter of this surprising and humorous novel, it appears to be the end. But this is Discworld after all, a world "a lot like our own but different." Moist awakes from the shock of his hanging to find that the city's Patrician, Lord Vetinari, has assigned him a government job (a fate worse than death?) restoring the defunct postal system. Of course, there is much more to restore than the flow of letters and packages. Justice as well as communication has been poorly served by a hostile takeover of the "clacks"-a unique messaging system that is part semaphore, part digital, and under the monopoly of the Grand Trunk Company. Before Moist can get very far into the job, he encounters ghosts, the voices of unsent letters, and a ruthless corporate conspiracy. In this quickly escalating battle, the post office is definitely the underdog, but, as the author notes, "an underdog can always find somewhere soft to bite." Fortunately Moist has friends: the determined Miss Dearheart, a golem with more than feet of clay, and a secret society of unemployed and very unusual postal workers as well as a vampire named Oscar. The author's inventiveness seems to know no end, his playful and irreverent use of language is a delight, and there is food for thought in his parody of fantasyland. This 29th Discworld novel, like the rest of the series, is a surefire hit for fans of Douglas Adams and Monty Python.-Carolyn Lehman, Humboldt State University, Arcata, CA Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.

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