Book Review: Terry Prachett’s Hogfather

Everyone has a couple of books that htey return to read every year.  For some it is nostalgia, or simple love of that book.  Mine in the Hogfather I read it in the run up to Christmas every year.  there is something about the book that makes me feel as though all is right in the world, even (like this year) when it isn’t.  I was introduced to this book by my partner and evey since I haven’t been able to get enough of it.

The main plot is following Death as he steps into the Hogfather’s rather lage boots on the night before Hogswatch.  The Hogfather is (for lack of a better human word) ill, and we follow Death’s Granddaughter as she tries to unpick the mystery and save Hogswatch.

Susan is one of my favourite characters in the Discworld series.  Despite her unique situation she tries to get on with whatever she needs to do.  She doesn’t like nonesense and is fairly intelligent which is alwyas nice as there can be a lack of inteligent females in some literature. She clearly likes the children she works with and i like that she treats them like adults.  THis is something that children appriciate they can tell when they are being spoken down to, and some flourish when they are trated as an adult.  Obiously she has aa number of quirks and these just highlight how positive all the others are.

Death and Abert are a pair who are very opposite, one that has had enough of life and another who wishes that he could truly live.  They balance each other nicely through out this book and Albert takes the time to explain why certain things aren’t as simple as Death would like it to be.

The Auditors are also great characters and I am planning on reading Theif of Time which also has them in which I am really looking forward to.

Hex is also great, both explaining how computers work and also the irritation at when things go wrong or there in an inexplicable error that doesn’t make any sense.  It is a perfect addition for the world that reflects ours in such a satrical way.

I love the way that this is written, if you have ever read a Terry Pratchett book you know that they aren’t written in chapters, and you are given a number of differnt strands to follow all of which are usually happening simultaneously.  I love the way that this book takes elements from Christmas and brings forth the same feeling of christmas while still highlighing the irony of certain elements of the holiday and focusing on some of the niceities that you hear about at christmas.  This book always makes me feel christmasy. I do read it every year and it always makes me feel ready for the fesitvities that we are building up to.

Terry Pratchett Hogfather Discworld Series book Cover

One of the key themes of this book is belief and the importance of it.  The books addresses how belief in the small things that we are told about as children allow you to believe in the more difficult things as an adult such as Justice.  I feel that this is very poiniant, belief is something that is important to have regardless of whether you are religoud or not.  YOu have belief in yourslef, belief that justice exists, belief that we can all come together to do some good in the world.  Imagine if you didn’t have this belief, that is one of the things that this books makes you think about. 

The other theme I want to highlight is the importance of family during the holidays and how it cen be a difficult time if there are challeges within your family.  If your family isn’t close or you are adopted or you cannot be with your family for a specific reason, can make this time of year very dififuclt.  Susan has made her family those who she wants to be around are people that she wants to spend the holiday with.

Do you have a favourite holiday read?  Please let me know in the comments below!


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