Friday, January 4, 2019

Lords and Ladies by Terry Pratchett

11295643I have been reading long enough that I no longer remember how exactly I got pulled into the fantasy genre.  

In elementary school, I mostly I read Boxcar Children, Shiloh, Sidewise Stories, Bailey School Kids and Boys Against Girls.  While the Bailey series has mythical creatures, they weren't what I would really call fantasy novels.

During school, I dutifully read my curriculum, which was heavy in Paulsen, London, Hinton, and other very realistic coming of age stories.  It wasn't until I was in high school where I had well outgrown my curriculum and had quite a bit of extra time on my hands.  I needed extracurricular reading.  I asked friends for their favorite reads.  Fantasy books were the ones that I added to my shelves.

Lord of the Rings was one of my favorite trilogies until Brandon Sanderson came along.  I loved the high fantasy of Tolkien.  His elves were specifically most alluring to me.

Then I read Pratchett.  Oh how Pratchett can shine a light on something and make all the warts visible.  The Lords and Ladies of Discworld really are no different from Tolkien's elves, but you don't close Lords and Ladies and want to be an elf.

This was easily my favorite of the Discworld series that focuses on the witches.  I enjoyed their traveling abroad, but this one has lessons.  The novel has quantum mechanics, quashing romantic frippery, the importance of semantics, and being comfortable with who you are.

In fact, my favorite section in the whole book is when Nanny Ogg describes the elves, and she explains semantics.  Words are powerful.  Most of them have been forgotten in modern language, especially since we have somehow bastardized meanings to better suit our moods.

Remember... elves are glamorous.  They project glamour.  No one ever said elves were nice.

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