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Raising Steam: (Discworld novel 40) (Discworld series) [Kindle Edition]

Terry Pratchett
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (641 customer reviews)

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Book Description

It’s all change for Moist von Lipwig, swindler, conman, and (naturally) head of the Royal Bank and Post Office.



A steaming, clanging new invention, driven by Dick Simnel, the man with t’flat cap and t’sliding rule, is drawing astonished crowds - including a few particularly keen young men armed with notepads and very sensible rainwear – and suddenly it’s a matter of national importance that the trains run on time.



Moist does not enjoy hard work. His . . .vital input at the bank and post office consists mainly of words, which are not that heavy. Or greasy. And it certainly doesn’t involve rickety bridges, runaway cheeses or a fat controller with knuckledusters. What he does enjoy is being alive, which may not be a perk of running the new railway. Because, of course, some people have OBJECTIONS, and they’ll go to extremes to stop locomotion in its tracks.



Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

In 2007, just years before he was granted a knighthood for services to literature, Terry Pratchett announced he had been diagnosed with a rare form of early-onset Alzheimer’s disease. Although his illness has limited his ability to use a keyboard, it hasn’t stopped him from using dictating software to create yet another installment, number 39, in his internationally popular Discworld series. Here the invention of a steam-powered locomotive by an ingenious young artificer named Dick Simnel creates a stir among the citizens of Discworld’s prominent metropolis, Ankh-Morpork, as well as disrupting the affairs of assorted dwarfs, trolls, and goblins in the surrounding countryside. To keep Simnel’s invention properly reigned in, Lord Vetinari dispatches Moist von Lipwig, his trusted minister of almost everything, including the Royal Bank, to fund and supervise the construction of a railway. Leavened with Pratchett’s usual puns, philosophical quips, and Discworld in-jokes, the story offers an amusing allegory of Earthly technology’s many seductions and give series fans at least one more visit with their favorite characters. HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: A 200,000 initial print run, extensive advertising and media appearances, and frenzied online and social media coverage will carry forward the latest in Pratchett’s mega-selling series (more than 80 million copies sold). --Carl Hays

Review

   • "Terry Pratchett's creation is still going strong after 30 years as Ankh-Morpork branches into the railway age... There are sly nods to the history of railways and a cheeky reference to The Railway Children. Most aficionados, however, will be on the look-out for in-jokes and references from previous novels -- of which there is no shortage... It is at the level of the sentence that Pratchett wins his fans." --The Times

Product Details

  • File Size: 2318 KB
  • Print Length: 386 pages
  • Publisher: Transworld Digital (November 7, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0552170461
  • ISBN-13: 978-0552170468
  • ASIN: B00DSO9RMC
  • Text-to-Speech: Not enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #33,492 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
265 of 281 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Terry Pratchett did not write this. April 10, 2014
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Like the other reviewers who made this claim, I'll state my bona fides. I've read all the Discworld books. I've read half of them at least six times each. I've read most of Pratchett's other stuff.

And like the other people who made this claim, I never imagined I would ever write a bad review for a Terry Pratchett book.

But I've come to the conclusion that someone else wrote this book. As soon as this thought struck me (around page 80) I found myself reading on and wondering how I could ever have believed this was Pratchett's voice at all. No, someone else has taken over the shop. His daughter is the most likely suspect, since he said he was handing the Discworld on to her. (By the way, a note for the copyright page detectives: The books have been copyrighted in the names of both Terry and Lyn Pratchett for years... long before his illness. And Lyn is his wife, not his daughter.)

Assuming that whoever wrote Raising Steam goes on writing, I want to offer him/her a few tips:

- You need to know two things about Vetinari. He's always in control of any situation, and we are never shown what he's thinking. Never.

- All right, you need to know a third thing about him. We are constantly told he's ruthless, but he's not. He's got way more ruth than most people.

- Oh, and a fourth thing. He's the king of understatement. When Vetinari threatens you, he raises an eyebrow. He may or may not make some comment along the lines of "Indeed?" He does not give detailed, repeated, re-repeated descriptions of what he's going to do to you.

- The members of the City Watch call Vimes "Mister Vimes".

- The dwarves do not represent Muslims.

- Dwarves refer to female dwarves as "he".

- Death is a good guy.
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108 of 113 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing to the Max April 26, 2014
Format:Hardcover
If this is your first venture into the Discworld of Terry Pratchett, DO NOT BUY THIS BOOK. Start with "§The Color of Magic", "The Light Fantastic", "Going Postal" or almost anything else. If I had started with this one, I would not now own every single Discworld book written by Sir Terry. Not only do I own them all, I have read each one at least 10 times, since I discovered Sir Terry 3 years ago. (Yes, I know - hard to believe, but I do love them.) Presents of choice are Pratchett books for my family and friends.

The characters are seriously flawed - pale and very blurred imitations of the real characters - cardboard characters as other reviewers have stated.
: Samuel Vimes - acerbic, dour, cynical Mister Vimes, laughs with "so twisty he can slide through a corkscrew sideways" Moist Von Lipwig. WHAT? (And if the author had called him "Commander Vimes" just once more, I would have been screaming at the top of my lungs.)
: Mustrum Ridcully, Arch Chancellor of Unseen University, never had more than a knowing twinkle in his eye. Now he indulges in laughing.
: Adora Belle Dearheart has turned into a non-smoking (from over 100 cigarettes a day) June Cleaver, "puffing" Moist¡¦s pillow and serving him a healthy (?) breakfast in bed. This is the woman whose brother called her "Killer" and Moist calls "Spike".
: Lady Margolotta who speaks with absolutely no accent, has has had no problem pronouncing a"W" previously. In this book, not only can't she pronounce a "W", she seems to use only sentences that have a forest of those letters in them.
: Lord Vetinari: oh lordy. Where to start? Intelligent, taciturn, secretive Vetinari has turned into a verbose, jolly good fellow who laughs with the inestimable Drumknott, his secretary. I could cry.
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113 of 122 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Hmm. Not quite sure what to make of it. January 20, 2014
By Tally
Format:Kindle Edition
Trying to write this review was difficult as it took a while to figure out how to best approach the criticism. It's well-established that Pratchett is suffering from Alzheimer's and as a consequence the caliber of his writing has noticeably diminished. Raising Steam is no exception. It simply does not have the wit, charm or humor of Pratchett's earlier Discworld book (the last "real" Pratchett book was probably Unseen Academicals). Those who claim that Pratchett's back on form, well, go and reread Soul Music or Hogfather or The Truth. They're two different writers now.

But I can't really fault Pratchett for the decline in his writing standards due to his health, nor is it fair at all. In fact I'd even say that it's impressive he's still able to put out a fairly decent story. So I gave the book three stars.

But I will comment on the following:

Goblins: I am not a fan of the goblins. I found them annoying little characters who add little to the story other than their cumbersomely long names. When Pratchett introduced the other sapient creatures of the Discworld - dwarves, vampires, trolls and the living dead, he introduced them with all their cliches and stereotypes and thoroughly poked holes through all of them and still gave them their due flaws, which made these characters so real to the point that I almost expected to run into a dwarf or troll when I stepped outside after reading a Pratchett novel. But the goblins have been given a hands-off treatment in a fairly politically correct manner that makes it difficult to warm up to them. Compared to the trolls and dwarves of earlier books, the goblins remain limited two dimensional characters that add little to the story.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
In memoriam
Published 17 hours ago by Emanuele Gemelli
2.0 out of 5 stars Good-bye to Discworld! Disappointing Conclusion to Great Series
This is probably the very last of the Discworld novels. I am sad to have come to an end of these delightful, sardonic, pun-filled books. This one, however, is a disappointment. Read more
Published 2 days ago by D. Taub
4.0 out of 5 stars Farewell to all that
I was almost finished with the book when Pterry died. I hated to finish....
Published 3 days ago by Cirrus
5.0 out of 5 stars Thank you for hours of entertainment, Sir Terry Pratchett. RIP
This is a good read. There are bits and pieces, small character differences, as noted by other reviewers. Read more
Published 4 days ago by P. Bronecky
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Terry Pratchett is always a delight--so sorry he died.
Published 4 days ago by bookie
5.0 out of 5 stars one of the best
I've read them all and this is one of the best.

When I started reading this, Sir Terry was alive. One thing led to another and I put the book down for a bit. Read more
Published 6 days ago by Neicie
4.0 out of 5 stars A Solid Discworld Adventure!
This is a fine Discworld book evolving the world another step, this time with the invention of the steam railroad. Read more
Published 7 days ago by Steven Woodcock
3.0 out of 5 stars ... aware of the untimely death of one of my favorite authors. I have...
I am aware of the untimely death of one of my favorite authors. I have thorougly enjoyed Discworld-in a Monty Python meets Sci-Fi way. Read more
Published 8 days ago by Andrew Doolittle
5.0 out of 5 stars All aboard!
All aboard for one of the last rides through imagination and political satire. If you love trains you will get extra joy from this book.
Published 13 days ago by Edward Goldstein
4.0 out of 5 stars Always a joy to find a new one of Mr Pratchett's books ...
Always a joy to find a new one of Mr Pratchett's books and this was no exception, a fun read!
Published 13 days ago by John L Bundstein
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More About the Author

Terry Pratchett sold his first story when he was fifteen, which earned him enough money to buy a second-hand typewriter. His first novel, a humorous fantasy entitled The Carpet People, appeared in 1971 from the publisher Colin Smythe. Terry worked for many years as a journalist and press officer, writing in his spare time and publishing a number of novels, including his first Discworld novel, The Color of Magic, in 1983. In 1987 he turned to writing full time, and has not looked back since. To date there are a total of 36 books in the Discworld series, of which four (so far) are written for children. The first of these children's books, The Amazing Maurice and His Educated Rodents, won the Carnegie Medal. A non-Discworld book, Good Omens, his 1990 collaboration with Neil Gaiman, has been a longtime bestseller, and was reissued in hardcover by William Morrow in early 2006 (it is also available as a mass market paperback (Harper Torch, 2006) and trade paperback (Harper Paperbacks, 2006). Terry's latest book, Nation, a non-Discworld standalone YA novel was published in October of 2008 and was an instant New York Times and London Times bestseller. Regarded as one of the most significant contemporary English-language satirists, Pratchett has won numerous literary awards, was named an Officer of the British Empire "for services to literature" in 1998, and has received four honorary doctorates from the Universities of Warwick, Portsmouth, Bath, and Bristol. His acclaimed novels have sold more than 55 million copies (give or take a few million) and have been translated into 36 languages. Terry Pratchett lives in England with his family, and spends too much time at his word processor.  Some of Terry's accolades include: The Carnegie Medal, Locus Awards, the Mythopoetic Award, ALA Notable Books for Children, ALA Best Books for Young Adults, Book Sense 76 Pick, Prometheus Award and the British Fantasy Award.

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Topic From this Discussion
Kindle edition: US vs UK price
This is really a shame. It seems really unfair.
Nov 2, 2013 by Bo Bendtsen |  See all 8 posts
Why can't I buy this?
I agree Audrin. I have been watching this since the initial announcement and am about ready to pre-order through Amazon UK. If this takes $$ our of the US publisher's pocket, so be it. I am thinking that it is a pricing issue between publishers, but I would dearly like to know what is going on,.
Oct 3, 2013 by H. H. Steele |  See all 3 posts
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