Saturday, November 14, 2015

Review:: Mort, by Terry Pratchett

Title: Mort
Author: Terry Pratchett
Series: Discworld, #4
Format: Paperback
Rating: ★★★☆☆


Once again, I was failed to be "wowed," but the book itself was enjoyable. I actually enjoyed the other three more than this one, which was surprising, as I'd heard Mort is one of the better early books. Maybe I just need to start going in without any expectations.
Honestly, high expectations can kill a book for me, and with Discworld, that kind of hype is floating around everywhere. But I know that for me, if I'm not completely won over by something and it was hyped up, I'm going to perceive to enjoy it less. So I just need to read these novels as is.

Which is going to be tough, living in a house of Pratchett fans. I will survive!

It's hard to say exactly why I didn't enjoy Mort as much as the first three books. It might have been a bit too dry for my mood at the moment (something I never thought I'd say) or it even might have been the volume itself. Oh, this book was horribly made. It's the kind of paperback where if you don't bend it all the way, you can't read the last bit of text on the other page because the margins are so small...

Yes, I know. The construction of a book shouldn't impact my enjoyment. But my hands aren't great and when it's physical painful and difficult to read a book, it saps some of my entertainment, unfortunately.

Anyway, about the actual book. It went about where I expected it to, although there were a couple of deviations that were harder to pick up on. It definitely didn't try to PLOT TWIST, which is good because that would have thrown me right out. The plot itself really wasn't much to speak of, I guess. Non-spoilery version would be: Boy becomes Death's apprentice. Boy done screwed up for a pretty girl.

The characters felt like they could have used a bit more work. I never really feel like we get a handle on Mort himself, which is frustrating because he should be going through a significant amount of change. Some of that change was told to us, some of it wasn't characterization (it was plot), and almost none of it felt like it bled through in the writing. The only reason we ever know any of the characters are in love is because they say so (okay, there are a few expressions of affection). In fact, the character who felt the deepest was Albert, who I'd pegged to be one of the least likely to win that award.

The book also felt less funny than the other ones, which was sad-making for me. Again, that might just be the physical binding of the book, but I don't know. I wasn't laughing aloud as much as I was in the other ones, and it certainly didn't have that fast-paced humor feel.

Still, I enjoyed it, even if most of this review is critique. And I've already got my hands on a copy of Sourcery, to see if maybe Mort just wasn't the exact thing I needed. Or, as it's the same type of paperback, maybe it'll teach me that I just can't read books like that anymore.

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