50 Book Challenge: 11-15

Build a man a fire, and he’ll be warm for a day. Set a man on fire, and he’ll be warm for the rest of his life. — Terry Pratchett

11. Tricks of the Mind – Derren Brown

Amazing book.  Derren Brown, and you really should look into him if you’re unfamiliar, is sort of the British version of Penn & Teller.  I say sort of because his tricks are less illusions and more mentalist, but he is super skeptical and very honest about the fact that it’s all tricks.  He’s also the best cold reader I’ve ever seen.  And I hate that stuff when it’s played for serious, but he plays it as memory tricks and intuitivity and he’s kind of a dick.

12. Guards! Guards! – Terry Pratchett, read by Nigel Planer

I really liked this one, I think if you were just starting the series this would be one you could start with.  It stands alone quite well.  It delves into a lot of characters that I quite love the Librarian, who is an ape, Vimes, who is Dirty Harry basically, Sybil Ramkin, who is one of those crazy, not terribly attractive, flawed and delightful women characters, and the Patrician, who is evil in an efficient and good sort of way.  The Patrician was originally intended to be played by Alan Rickman, in Mr. Pratchett’s mind, but was ultimately played by Jeremy Irons.  We find that this suits our Gruber sensibilities.

13. Faust Eric – Terry Pratchett, read by Tony Robinson

Didn’t really care for this one.

14. Moving Pictures – Terry Pratchett, read by Nigel Planer

This is a really good one if you’re into movies.  A lot of what the Discworld books do is introduce modern technology into a magical world, and that technology is based on magical innovation rather than technical innovation.  In this one, someone discovers how to magically record moving images, and the rise of Hollywood happens in a few weeks, culminating in the epic film about the civil war “Blown Away”.  I enjoy all the references to things that are familiar with slightly bizarre names.  Banged Grains instead of Popcorn, Clicks instead of Flicks.  Also stand alone, if you’re a movie person looking to get into the Discworld series, start here.

15. Reaper Man – Terry Pratchett, read by Nigel Planer

Not my favorite.  I like Death a lot, but there was something less than compelling about his story.

About ashleyfmiller

I write, give occasional speeches, and am currently getting my PhD in Mass Communications from South Carolina. Before going back to school, I worked in Los Angeles in reality tv, web series, and film.

Posted on May 19, 2010, in 50 books and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: