Welcome to Discworldathon, a year of celebrating all things Discworld. If you're new to the series, this month is designed to help you work out where might be best for you to start. If you're not new to the series, feel free to weigh in in the comments with where you started/where you'd advise newcomers to start!
This is the Discworld Reading Order produced by Epic Reads
and it's a handy, colour coded way to decide which order to read the books in. Each colour represents a character or theme - just pick a colour and follow it. Easy, right?
But what if you know nothing about Discworld? Well, either you can find someone who knows you well who's already a fan and can give you an idea about which characters might be most 'you', or you check out my little guide below!
If you've ever mentioned your desire to read Discworld to anyone it's quite likely they've told you not to start with The Colour of Magic. Although it's the first book in the series even Terry Pratchett didn't think it was the best. Honestly Wyrd Sisters, our readalong book for January is probably as good a place as any to begin, although it's technically the second book in the Witches 'series', but the writing is hilarious and the story is gripping. If you're still baffled, here's a little synopsis of the characters...
- you'll get a better introduction to them when Louise
hosts next month but they're basically a bunch of ageing, slighly bumbling magic men who think they know a lot more than they actually know about the world. They also have some strange ideas about...well, most things, and have a librarian who is an orangutan.
Witches - the antithesis of the wizards. A (smaller) group of women (not) lead (they don't believe in leaders) by Granny Weatherwax who believes in 'headology' and has no idea what the theatre is. The witches are the ones who actually get things done in the Discworld.
Tiffany Aching - some of the witches (notably Granny Weatherwax) also feature in the Tiffany Aching books, but these are the ones I recommend most often to people starting out. Tiffany has help in her world-saving endeavours from the Nac Mac Feegle, a group of vicious, hard-drinking pixies...
Death - Death is brilliant, and this is probably one of the only times you'll hear that said. A big skeleton with piercing blue eyes riding a horse named Binky, he's constantly struggling to understand mortals and has the occasional midlife (mid death?) crisis...
City Watch - These are my favourite books. Commander Sam Vimes sort of accidentally becomes in charge of turning the Night Watch from a shambles of inept, bumbling men into a cohesive system of law enforcement. He's pretty put-upon and has to deal with all sorts of idiocy and prejudice along the way.
There are lots of other stand alone type books, and the Moist von Lipwig books which also (in the above infographic at least) encompass some of the other 'industrial' books, but hopefully this little intro gives you some kind of ideas about where you might want to start.
Those who are familiar with the series already feel free to weigh in in the comments or over in the Goodreads group