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The Truth
By Terry Pratchett

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The Truth
The 25th Discworld Novel
By Terry Pratchett
Charnwood Large Print Edition, (2003)
ISBN: 0-7089-4963-0
Genre: Fantasy

Reviewed by Auggie Moore - January 3, 2005

The Truth is the twenty-fifth Discworld novel written by Terry Pratchett. It would be easy to imagine that after writing twenty-five novels set in the same world that Pratchett would be beginning to run out of ideas or that his stories would be getting tiresome. The truth, however is just the opposite, as it seems that the more Discworld novels Pratchett writes, the better, and zanier, the stories get!

In The Truth is a story about a hard-working newspaperman, William de Worde. The fates decreed that William be the first editor of the first newspaper to be published in Ankh-Morpork. Like any stalwart newspaperman William is a journalist whose main goal is to discover and report on the truth - even when it upsets some rather nasty people. Not too terribly unexpectedly, especially on Discworld, William soon finds that a diverse host of people - and mythical creatures, want him dead. To make William's life even more difficult, his staff has special problems of their own. For example, his head photographer, Otto Chriek, is a vampire who has a nasty habit of turning into dust every time his flash bulb goes off. Luckily for Chriek, the means exist to restore him each time he turns to dust.

When he began the paper, William concentrated on rather timid new fare such as party reports and in-depth coverage of oddly shaped potatoes and other vegetables. As he begins to report on hard news stories, his hobby quickly turns William into an investigative journalist who cuts his teeth by investigating the facts surrounding an attempted murder that was supposedly carried out by Lord Vetinari. As he investigates the blood thirsty and political machinations surrounding the crime, William begins to suspect that this crime was just the first step in a plan to topple the leadership of Ankh-Morpork. In true Pratchett fashion, he gives William a unique news source - a talking dog named Gaspode who is more than happy to act as William's informant. As events unfold, life will never be the same again for William and his staff at the Ankh-Morpork Times.

The Truth is a witty and zany story that pokes fun at both hard and tabloid journalism. The story line is well conceived, and the story is so engrossing that you'll have difficulty putting the book down. Best of all, Pratchett's writing is lyrical and literate, and his characters are so 'real' that they nearly jump off the page. This is a wonderful edition to the Discworld series and a perfect book to read if you need a bit of chuckle to brighten your day.

If you haven't yet become ensnared in the Discworld series, this book is a perfect place to get your feet wet... While many of the characters in this book, such as Commander Sam Vimes of the local constabulary, frequently appear in the Discworld series, this book is written in such a way that you can easily follow the story without having read any of the previous books. Be prepared, however, to spend some solid reading time catching up with the first twenty-four books, as you'll want to go back and read the entire series from beginning to end after reading The Truth.

The Truth can be purchased directly from Ulverscroft, the parent company of Charnwood Large Print.

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