Wednesday, March 23, 2011

The Color of Magic

The Colour of Magic (Discworld, #1)The Color of Magic – Pratchett, Terry
Evan’s ESS = 6.15 out of 10
Erin’s ESS =  out of 10
Content = PG-13 (Adult Content, Language, Violence, Imaginary Flying Reptiles, Epic Board Games)

“My name is immaterial,” she said.
“That’s a pretty name,” said Racewind.

“No, what he didn’t like about heroes was that they were usually suicidally gloomy when sober and homicidally insane when drunk.”

Why:  This absolutely kills us to admit, but we…  Wow, this is more difficult than we thought... We just don’t get what all the hoopla’s about.  Yes, it’s hilarious that The Color of Magic is set on a disk balanced on the back of three elephants, all balancing on a giant turtle.  And the footnote technique utilized is almost always funny, but…  We may very well be the only 2 people within the literary fantasy community that didn’t like this book, which is just bizarre considering only one of us has actually read the novel. 

Okay, we’ll stop apologizing for our tastes.  On the surface, The Color of Magic seemed like a literary match made in heaven.  We envisioned long walks on the beach together and late night rendezvous under the bed covers (with the lights on).  This novel has everything:  Wizards with questionable talents, upside-down mountain ranges and heroic enchanted luggage trunks.  Even Zephyrus, one of the gods controlling the fate of the main characters is a hoot considering that he holds the power over slight breezes.  Unfortunately for us, the honeymoon only lasted halfway through page 14.  For whatever reason we got lost in the overly zany plot and the humor missed its target. 

All that being said, we’re determined to press ahead.  Terry Pratchett’s written close to a zillion novels about the Discworld and maybe our second visit will be the charm.  Plus we’ve already committed to reading Mort in the 2nd challenge.    

Editor’s Note:  Our European reader’s should please be aware that this review is actually referring to The Colour of Magic.  Sorry for any confusion.


  1. Oh, please do give the wonderful Mr. Pratchett another chance - the Discworld novels are what I fall back on every time I need to lighten my mood and read something that's just plain fun. There are some weak spots (to be expected in such a long list of books), but some absolutely stellar reads as well.

  2. I tried to read the Colour of Magic a while back and I actually gave up halfway through. I have been told afterwards though that it is not the best of his books and that I should just move on in the series and read the others.

  3. You aren't alone. I definitely felt like I was missing what everyone else was getting. The only thing I remember getting out of it was thinking it would be cool to have one of those suitcase things.

    Like you - I planned to go ahead with the series anyway in hopes I would find "it" in book 2, but I never did read it. I'm kind of hoping you will, though, so I can find out if it's worth it. :)

  4. I enjoyed the first few Discworld books, but I didn't start really liking them until around Mort or Sourcery. The Color of Magic is pretty shaky on re-reading. The ones I love enough to re-read are Hogfather and most of the ones focusing on the City Watch (Guards! Guards!, Men at Arms, Night Watch, Thud)

  5. Sally and Lindsay,
    Thanks for the encouragement... I have high hopes for Mort!

    Delphyne and Noiashui,
    I'm sooooo glad I'm not alone!!!

  6. I've read a lot of Terry Pratchett, but haven't delved into this one yet. Hmm....I think waiting a bit longer won't hurt!

  7. I know how you feel! I was disappointed too, but whether it was in the book because it wasn't really funny or in me because I didn't find it very funny, I'm not sure. I did go on to read another couple of the Discworld books and I'm happy to say I found them getting increasingly better. I have a few more sitting on my shelves that I will pick up when the mood strikes me.

    BTW, have you read Good Omens by Pratchett and Gaiman? Hilarious.