The British fantasy writer and humorous Terry Pratchett is one of those author’s whose publications I want to like, indeed ought to like, but somehow don’t. I read the first three of his satirical Discworld novels back in the 1990s and while I really, really (really) wanted to join with my friends in their fannish devotion to him I was largely left unmoved. Sorry to say, I simply didn’t find his books funny. Perhaps that was the callow age I was at, though admittedly I’m not sure. However one thing I am sure of his my liking of the man himself. Terry Pratchett has always come across as a thoroughly decent and modest person in any interviews that I’ve seen or read. His television series exploring his degenerative Alzheimer’s and the dignified manner in which he has come to terms with it was incredibly poignant.
Across his literary career he has managed to garner a veritable army of fans, and not just the usual suspects (i.e. folk like me!). Pratchett enjoys a certain cachet in Britain’s liberal media, the Discworld novels representing a sort of Harry Potter for grownups. This is reflected in regular reviews and articles examining his work in left-wing publications or websites. Now the New Statesman has a lengthy interview with the author, plus a couple of related articles examining his politics and attitude to death, all of which make for interesting reading.
So much so, in fact, that I think it is only fair that I dig out those old Discworld novels and give them another go.