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I know I usually do full book reviews, but while I’m catching up on some reading, I figured I most certainly need a review of the Color of Magic on here. And to remain in line with the unconventional story that is The Color of Magic, this review is also a little bit different.
Here are the 10 reasons you should read the Color of Magic!
1. It’s hilarious! And has great one-liners
Ever wanted to know a great come-back? Pratchett is a master in writing great one-liners, with the typical British humor ingrained. Seriously, it will make you laugh. Some examples to give you an idea:
“If I were you, I’d sue my face for slander.”
“Twoflower was a tourist, the first ever seen on the discworld. Tourist, Rincewind had decided, meant ‘idiot’.”
“That’s what’s so stupid about the whole magic thing, you know. You spend twenty years learning the spell that makes nude virgins appear in your bedroom, and then you’re so poisoned by quicksilver fumes and half-blind from reading old grimoires that you can’t remember what happens next.”
2. It’s short
Especially for a fantasy. Granted, it’s the first part of a 2-part series, but that one is short as well. The Color of magic is around 228 pages, which is roughly 65,000 words. So, if you start reading it in the morning, you can have it finished by the evening.
3. Amazing characters
I just love Rincewind, the grumpy one-spell wizard, and Twoflower, who’s an overly optimistic tourist. Not to mention Luggage (yes, actual magical luggage), who somehow conveys many emotions, even though he never speaks. The conversations between Rincewind and Twoflower are incredibly funny since their personalities are so opposite from each other. Twoflower gets them in all kinds of dangerous situations and somehow remains optimistic, while Rincewind always opts for the more pessimistic, and honestly, more realistic view.
4. Amazing world-building
The Discworld is with absolute certainty the most imaginative world I’ve ever seen in a book. I mean: it’s a disc, carried by four elephants, who are standing on a giant turtle who swims through the universe (the sex of the turtle is undetermined). The rest of the world is just as imaginative.
5. The ‘Dragons’
One of these imaginative things is dragons. Or the not-quite dragons, that are translucent under certain conditions. Saying more would be spoiling it. But it’s, again, quite funny.
6. Gods playing games
There’s also Gods playing games with the beloved characters in the book. They’re funny interludes and add to the hilarity of it all. It also adds to the discussion: are we in control of our fates?
7. Everyday life absurdities
Using the humor and one-liners, and absurd situations, Pratchett pokes at everyday concepts we know. For instance, Twoflower, at one point, introduces the concept of in-sewer-ants. The scene is both funny and makes you think when all the other characters make fun of the idea. Who in their right mind would want this in-sewer-ants?
8. Archetypes and fantasy tropes
Not only does Pratchett make fun of everyday concepts, but he also makes fun of the fantasy tropes and archetypes. One example is Hrun the Barbarian, one of the traditional, masculine heroes, enormously exaggerated.
9. You meet DEATH!
It’s just another excellent character in this book. DEATH is also quite funny (everything in this book is) and just keeps missing Rincewind, to DEATH’s annoyance.
10. Very, very fast pace
No slow pace in this novel! Arguably it’s sometimes a bit too fast and incoherent. There are times where you’re kinda like ‘what the hell just happened?’, but it’s all good fun. At least you know there won’t be boring parts or info dumps.
What are you waiting for?
While this first book might not be Pratchett’s best one, it still holds a close place to my heart, because this is where I fell in love with the Discworld. And I hope you will too!
Have you read this book already? What do you think about it?