‘Twas the night before Hogswatch
And all through the house
Not a creature was stirring,
Except for Death…
And his granddaughter Susan.
It’s the night before the most joyous day of the year, but something is weird — even by Discworld standards. In her role as nanny, Susan has been running into more bogeymen than usual, and that was before the talking crow and the Death of Rats showed up in the sitting room.
The Hogfather, the jolly soul and spirit of Hogswatch, seems to have vanished into thin air. The most psychotic member of the Assassins’ Guild is somehow involved, and now Death—a decidedly non-jolly entity, and also Susan’s grandfather—has donned a red suit and beard and is handing out presents. What’s next, bodies falling from the sky?
It’s going to be a long Hogswatchnight.
By the pricking of my thumbs…
The Hogfather is, as you might have guessed, the Discworld equivalent of Santa Claus. But he is so much more than that. Many gods were born of blood, sacrifices to the universe in exchange for the daily rising of the sun. The Hogfather is no exception, and he is partly responsible for keeping the world turning.
But not everyone is a fan of the human race; there are some who would prefer that the sun never rise again. That’s where Mr. Teatime (pronounced Teh-ah-tim-eh, he must frequently mention) is particularly useful…and frightening. He’s probably the only person on the Discworld to consider how best to kill a god.
The perfect story
No one’s mind works quite like Terry Pratchett’s, which is a shame, because the man’s a genius. He mixes philosophy with ridiculousness, danger with humor, and blurs the line between the fictional Discworld and our own spherical home.
With an amazing cast of characters (of whom Death is my particular favorite), plot twists, and extremely clever and suspenseful writing, Hogfather had me on the edge of my seat until the very last page.
Another challenging yet rewarding trip into the Discworld series, Hogfather is not to be missed.
“She’d become a governess. It was one of the few jobs a known lady could do. And she’d taken to it well. She’d sworn that if she did indeed ever find herself dancing on rooftops with chimney sweeps she’d beat herself to death with her own umbrella.”
“Mister Teatime had a truly brilliant mind, but it was brilliant like a fractured mirror, all marvelous facets and rainbows but, ultimately, also something that was broken.”
“OH, THERE HAS TO BE SOMETHING IN THE STOCKING THAT MAKES A NOISE, said Death. OTHERWISE, WHAT IS 4:30 A.M. FOR?”
What’s your favorite storyline in the Discworld series? If you’ve never read it, what’s stopping you?