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WOSSNAME -- Main issue -- September 2012

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    WOSSNAME Newsletter of the Klatchian Foreign Legion September 2012 (Volume 15, Issue 9, Post 1)
    Message 1 of 1 , Sep 19, 2012
      Newsletter of the Klatchian Foreign Legion
      September 2012 (Volume 15, Issue 9, Post 1)
      WOSSNAME is a free publication for members of the worldwide
      Klatchian Foreign Legion and its affiliates, including the North
      American Discworld Society and other continental groups. Are you a
      member? Yes, if you sent in your name, country and e-mail address.
      Are there any dues? No! As a member of the Klatchian Foreign Legion,
      you'd only forget them...
      Editor in Chief: Annie Mac
      News Editor: Fiona (not Bruce) Bruce
      Newshounds: Vera, Mogg, Sir J of Croydon Below, the Shadow
      Staff Writers: Asti, Pitt the Elder, Steven D'Aprano, L.C. Thomas
      Convention Reporters: Mithtrethth Hania Ogg et al
      Staff Technomancer: Jason Parlevliet
      Book Reviews: Drusilla D'Afanguin
      Puzzle Editor: Tiff
      Bard in Residence: Weird Alice Lancrevic
      DW Horoscope: Lady Anaemia Asterisk, Fernando Magnifico
      Emergency Staff: Jason Parlevliet
      World Membership Director: Steven D'Aprano (in his copious spare
      Copyright 2012 by Klatchian Foreign Legion



      18) CLOSE



      "A most excellent @DWCon – thank you to the committee, guests and
      attendees. Now go away, remove your radios and relax... until next

      – ptweeted by Pterry, 29th August 2012

      "Announcing the birth of Narrativia – a production company run by
      myself, Rod Brown & @terryandrob. First up are Good Omens & The

      ...and by Pratchett Junior on the 27th

      "Terry is in excellent fettle. Had a long chat with him last night
      and the Master is still very, very much in the building, in case
      anyone was wondering."

      – fellow fantasy author Diane Duane, at DWCon 2012



      Another day, another controversy... or not. UK newspapers have
      reported on the coroner's inquest into the 2011 death of Thomas
      Hobkinson, an elderly motor neurone disease sufferer who chose to
      take his own life at the time of his own choosing and who had seen
      the documentary Terry Pratchett: Choosing to Die. Despite there
      being no reported facts specifically linking the programme with Mr
      Hobkinson's decision, most of the newspaper articles are worded in
      such a way as to suggest that the programme exercised a specific
      influence on Mr Hobkinson. Here are some samples of the articles'
      almost identical opening lines:

      The Telegraph: "A terminally-ill man killed himself after watching a
      TV program about euthanasia by Sir Terry Pratchett, an inquest

      The Sun, and the Scottish Sun: "A dying man killed himself after
      watching a TV show about euthanasia by author Sir Terry Pratchett,
      an inquest heard."

      The Express: "A terminally-ill man killed himself after watching a
      TV programme on euthanasia by fantasy writer Sir Terry Pratchett, an
      inquest heard."

      Well, actually, no. If you read further, you find that this man
      killed himself after watching a video of his son's wedding. Yes, he
      had seen Terry Pratchett: Choosing to Die, but at some unspecified
      but patently much earlier time, since he then spent weeks to months
      preparing his own death. While we can never know what Mr Hobkinson's
      private thoughts were, it's reasonable to assume that watching the
      programme had *some* effect on him (quite possibly a lifting of some
      of his emotional burden, as he was shown other people suffering from
      an ever-worsening quality of life with no possibility of getting
      better and considering their options), but the juxtaposition of
      "watched the programme" and "committed suicide" is, in my opinion,
      suggesting to the reader that watching Choosing to Die *caused* this
      man to rush off and kill himself. Deliberately worded to create a
      stir? Certainly looks that way to me.

      On the other hand, the Plymouth Herald, a regional organ with an
      online presence as This is Plymouth, opens its report far more

      "A heart-broken wife has described the moment she left the room
      while her 'courageous, strong-willed and determined' terminally-ill
      husband of nearly 40 years took his own life." Moreover, although
      all reports included the coroner's verdict of death by suicide, only
      the Plymouth Herald included a further piece of information that
      strikes me as very relevant in the face of veiled accusations:

      "When Coroner Dr Emma Carlyon asked if there had been any third
      party involvement, assistance or pressure exerted on Mr Hobkinson to
      kill himself, the officer replied: 'Absolutely none whatsoever.'"

      If you would like to read the full text of all of these, here are
      the links:

      The Telegraph: http://tinyurl.com/9gdxcro
      The Sun: http://tinyurl.com/8hw9wcn
      The Scottish Sun: http://tinyurl.com/92c4kac
      The Express: http://tinyurl.com/9cpoweh
      This is Plymouth: http://tinyurl.com/92qthc6

      The subject of assisted dying, right to die, legalised suicide –
      call it what you choose – is a complex, highly emotive, and yes,
      heartbreaking one. It deserves to stand apart from sensationalism
      and deliberate misinformation.

      In your Editor's opinion, the best comment on the subject comes from
      thousands of miles away, in a telly guide "show of the week" piece
      by Giles Hardie in the Sydney Morning Herald. The recommendation, of
      course, is for "Terry Pratchett: Choosing to Die", which is airing
      on Australian free-to-air channel SBS:

      "Terry Pratchett is a best-selling British fantasy author who is
      best known for his delightfully satirical Discworld series. Yet here
      he is dealing with the starkest of realities and playing it very
      straight. Though Pratchett has been diagnosed with Alzheimer's, this
      is not about him choosing to die. Nor is it an argument disguised as
      a documentary. Pratchett is open about his desire to have some
      control over his own demise, but he is far from convinced by the
      available options... The journey is confronting for Pratchett and
      the audience. The facts are startling and provide ammunition for
      both sides of the argument. The location where people administer a
      fatal draught of poison to themselves is banal but captivating...
      Although it isn't making a case, this is very much a subjective
      tale. It is presented by Pratchett in extreme close-up and we see
      his often emotional response to every step of the journey. It is
      harrowing for him and us..."



      In a lighter vein, do remember that the Paul Kidby Discworld and
      Beyond art exhibition is still on, up through 29th September:

      Venue: St. Barbe Museum & Art Gallery, New Street, Lymington,
      Hampshire, SO41 9BH (phone 01590 676969)
      Times: Mondays to Saturdays, 10.00am to 4.00pm
      Tickets: adult admission price (to the museum and exhibitions)
      £4.00, concessions (senior citizens, students, unemployed, Museum
      Association members) £3.00, children under 16 £2.00, Children
      under 5 free, family ticket (2 adults and up to 4 children) £10.00


      ...and Sir Pterry's live evening at Ely cathedral went very well:

      More than 1,000 people filled Ely Cathedral last night to get their
      hands on a copy of Sir Terry Pratchett's new book. Sir Terry,
      renowned for his fantasy Discworld novels, about the inhabitants of
      the city of Ankh Morpork, gave a talk about his latest novel,
      Dodger, set in Victorian London, and about his life and career in
      general... Rebecca Harris, events organiser for the shop, said: 'We
      sold 1,300 tickets for Terry's visit which made it a sell-out. 300
      of those were sold on the actual day the tickets went on sale. He
      has generated a huge amount of local interest and there was a real
      buzz about his visit.'..."


      And here be a link to many iconographs of the evening, including
      individual portraits of Sir Pterry and the various "lucky 100


      Right, that's well enough here. On with the show!

      – Annie Mac, Editor



      Like it says on the tin...


      How did I miss this one?! Here be a video of Sir Pterry and his
      Science of Discworld co-authors Jack Cohen and Ian Stewart being
      interviewed at Trinity College Dublin's Science Gallery in June,
      which includes a discussion of the forthcoming Science of Discworld


      3.2 In the Toronto Star, Nation is highly recommended for readers
      aged 13 and up:

      "Pratchett's eminently able to spin a yarn and at the same time,
      engage theology, philosophy and the meaning of life. And make us
      laugh. Nation, in new teen-friendly format, is one of his best... As
      the wave's survivors straggle in, the two contrive ways for all to
      live, scavenging old traditions and confronting new, surprising
      thoughts about gods, nationhood, culture and science. Murderers,
      sharks and beer strong enough to curl your hair (if not burn it
      off!) — there's lots of action here. There's also wit, wisdom and
      literary flair, as Pratchett ranges from broad humour to serious
      thinking; from political satire to a compassionate portrayal of
      first love and adolescent growth..."




      Right. Click on the link below. Marvel at what you see. Then feel
      free to send WOSSNAME your suggestions for a caption. Go on, you
      know you want to...





      Sir Pterry will make three live appearances promoting Dodger in the
      USA in October! Two are in New York City and the third is in

      Friday, October 12th
      New York ComicCon
      Unbound Stage Appearance @ 1PM
      Autographing Session @ 5:15PM
      NOTE: You must have a ticket to the New York ComicCon to attend this

      Saturday, October 13th
      Barnes & Noble Union Square
      New York, NY
      Session begins at 2pm Eastern Standard Time

      Tuesday, October 16th
      Pfeiffer Hall Auditorium, Naperville, Chicago, IL
      Hosted by Anderson's Bookshop
      Session begins at 7pm Central Standard Time


      Well, an extended extract, at least. Epic Reads has made this
      officially available for the nonce. Go and enjoy!



      By Nick Curtis in The London Evening Standard:

      "Let's pause and note how slyly Pratchett disses Dickens, suggesting
      he later traduced Dodger, and the lad's noble Jewish mentor Solomon,
      by writing them up as villains, albeit likeable ones. His own aim is
      similar to Dickens's, to entertain while highlighting the extreme
      gulf between rich and poor in Victorian London. Pratchett now
      suffers from Alzheimer's but on this evidence it has not dulled his
      larky spirit or his descriptive powers.

      "The book is written in a picturesque, rhythmically involving
      version of Victorian dialect which the author cheerfully admits is,
      like much of the book, not strictly historically plausible. He's
      good on the underclass world, taking as read the usual parade of
      whores and footpads and drunks and instead filling in details of
      shonky shops and the damaged soldiers of Wellington's wars... But
      narratively, Pratchett is here no match for Dickens, or even for his
      own Discworld stories. The mystery girl nominally adds romance and
      political intrigue but really she is just a red herring to drive
      Dodger up through the social strata. Pratchett quite often gets
      carried away on riffs about toshing, or Dodger's first sight of a
      flush toilet, or his rambling chats with Solomon, and has to remind
      himself to get back to the plot.."


      By Rob Power in SFX Magazine:

      "It makes sense that Sir Pterry wants to write as much as possible
      while he still can, given his condition, but his impressive work
      rate is enough to put the rest of us to shame... Thankfully, all
      this activity hasn't meant a drop in quality. Dodger is a foray into
      historical fantasy that proves the goddess Narrativia still smiles
      upon Pratchett... Clearly a labour of love for Pratchett, Dodger's
      descriptions of the capital, from its slums and sewers to the homes
      of the middle classes and the bolt holes of the elite, paint a
      vivid, immersive picture. The attention to detail in both the break-
      neck storytelling and historical veracity are mightily impressive,
      while his characters remain as compelling and three dimensional as


      In Publishers Weekly:

      "This superb novel from Pratchett is relatively subdued in its humor
      and contains virtually no fantasy, beyond a flavoring of early
      Victorian alternate history. It's not only a fine Dickensian novel
      — Dickens himself figures prominently. It follows a sewer-scouring
      'tosher' and thief named Dodger, 'a skinny young man who moved with
      the speed of a snake,' who, like a knight in soiled armor, leaps out
      of a drain one night to protect a young woman who is being severely
      beaten. Two of London's most famous figures, Charles Dickens and
      social reformer Henry Mayhew, appear on the scene a moment later. A
      complex plot gradually unravels involving the identity of the
      mystery girl, known only as Simplicity, and the reasons someone
      powerful wants her dead. Making guest appearances are such
      luminaries as Benjamin Disraeli, Queen Victoria, and Angela Burdett-
      Coutts, the richest woman in the world at the time. Full of
      eccentric characters and carefully detailed London scenes, the tale
      embodies both Dickens's love for the common man and a fierce desire
      for social justice."

      Kirkus Reviews loved it and starred it:

      "Pratchett leaves Discworld to bring us something that is quite
      nearly – but not exactly – actual historical fiction. Dodger is
      a guttersnipe and a tosher (a glossary would not have been amiss to
      help readers navigate the many archaic terms, although most are
      defined in the text, often humorously). He knows everyone, and
      everyone knows him, and he's a petty criminal but also (generally)
      one of the good guys. One night he rescues a beautiful young woman
      and finds himself hobnobbing quite literally with the likes of
      Charlie Dickens (yes, that Dickens) and Ben Disraeli. The young
      woman is fleeing from an abusive husband and has been beaten until
      she miscarried; power and abuse are explored sensitively but
      deliberately throughout. And when he attempts to smarten himself up
      to impress the damsel in distress, he unexpectedly comes face to
      face with – and disarms! – Sweeney Todd. As Dodger rises, he
      continuously grapples with something Charlie has said: 'the truth is
      a fog.' Happily, the only fog here is that of Dodger's London, and
      the truth is quite clear: Historical fiction in the hands of the
      inimitable Sir Terry brings the sights and the smells (most
      certainly the smells) of Old London wonderfully to life, in no small
      part due to the masterful third-person narration that adopts
      Dodger's voice with utmost conviction. Unexpected, drily funny and
      full of the pathos and wonder of life: Don't miss it."

      Both above reviews courtesy of the Barnes & Noble site:


      Dodger is also listed in the top ten must-reads in the Kirkus site's
      blog section:


      In the Daily Mail, reviewed by Harry Ritchie:

      The maestro has left Discworld for his second novel of the year and
      the squillionth of his career, swapping Ankh-Morpork for the
      possibly even danker and ranker world of early-Victorian London in
      one of three London-based fantasies reviewed here. Our Dickensian
      heroes are Dodger - a scavenger in Victorian London's noisome sewers
      – and Dickens himself... Also featuring Sweeney Todd, Benjamin
      Disraeli and Sir Tel's pitch-perfect chirpiness..."


      Also, some nutshell "reviews" from fans commenting on Pterry's
      Facebook page...

      Claragh O'Reardon:
      Oh Why did I start Dodger on a day when I had one of my very rare
      social engagements? A good book demands a full days uninterrupted
      attention. Note to self - Must graduate on from being the sort of
      person people RARELY invite to social events to being the sort of
      obnoxious crazy old woman that people NEVER invite to social events.
      Thereby leaving more time for the the really important things in
      life i.e. Books (Oh and tea but that goes without saying)

      Alice Watts
      Loving dodger :) he reminds me a little of nutt

      Susan Owens
      Dodger is sparklingly good. Mr Pratchet I love you!

      John Kent
      Dodger is now in my life. late nights until its finished.

      Paul Leuty
      Dodger arrived today.... sealed slipcase edition.... I wonder what
      number it is? So tempting, so pretty, so shiny.... Must resist

      Duncan Purves
      Thank you Mr Postman. My copy of Dodger arrived this morning.

      Kate Scott
      In bed with Dodger ...

      Sarah Kenhard
      Kids in bed, husband pub, bath run, chilled crabbies in one hand,
      dodger in the other.......heaven is a place on earth!

      Rob Biggy Witcomb
      Had tickets for I shall wear midnight & broke my knee on way there,
      now it's time for dodger and I'm. In hospital....

      Jackie Henrick
      Recieved Dodger yesterday was pre-ordered, just started to read it,
      so far as i have read it is yet another great book, from the best
      author i have ever read. well done to Sir Terry, always look forward
      to his books.

      David Ash
      As a confessed lover of the 'disc' and the characters so
      thoughtfully created and reused since, I regret that my annual fix
      of that fare will not be in my Christmas sock this year. I will
      however not let that get in the way of appreciating what is sure to
      be a humorous look through a distorted lens at Dickensian London.
      Happy Publication Day to all his followers and I hope to see many
      more with Terry Pratchett.

      Andy Hardiman
      Terry, you brought a huge smile to my face, and I am sure many
      others, this morning with your [promotional for Didger] appearance
      on BBC Breakfast show. Thank you not only for your books and
      sideways slant on life but thank you for showing what you can
      achieve no matter what life delivers you. Your a living
      inspirational Legend and long may that continue.




      ...from all over Datum Earth!

      By Geoff Adams in the Otago Daily Times, New Zealand:

      "Pratchett should be congratulated on hatching out new fields for
      his writing but this one seems to lack his trademark quirky humour
      and possibly owes most to the SF writer. Its theme is one of
      multiple universes, but the basic premise that some people can
      naturally "step" from one to another – or that other people can do
      so with the aid of a newly invented little box of wires and switch,
      powered by a potato (of all things!) – just did not spud in for
      me... what was worse than my stretched incredulity was that 52
      chapters and 355 pages of this novel are essentially rather boring
      (apart from its new reason to plant early potatoes)... there is a
      more serious quest by Joshua (a natural stepper, who doesn't
      actually need a potato) and Lobsang, but it doesn't go anywhere with
      really interesting action. I finished the book feeling it was a
      'Very Long and Slow Earth' indeed..."


      By Mohsin Siddiqui on Pakistan-based Dawn.com:

      "I love Terry Pratchett's work. I like Stephen Baxter's almost as
      much. The former is an A for me, the latter a solid B, so when I
      picked up The Long Earth, all hopes were primed for an A+.
      Unfortunately, it seems that the law of averages applies even to
      fiction, and the combination of an A and a B resulted in a 'good-
      but-not-great' B+... Baxter is known for his remarkable imagination
      and Pratchett for his dry, witty insights into human nature, and so
      one would expect The Long Earth to be a masterpiece. Unfortunately,
      while the collaboration results in some fun ideas and concepts, the
      plot somehow fails to gel. The further away Joshua and Lobsang step
      from their home Earth, the lengthier and more tepid their
      conversations become...

      "I wish there were more to say about this book, but unfortunately,
      it's just not very exciting. Neither is it terribly funny, nor
      particularly dark. It's like tofu prepared by a master chef: you get
      glimpses of the technique and skill involved, but mostly you wind up
      wondering what on (the long) Earth possessed someone to turn soy
      milk into pressed curd and serve it as a meat substitute. And while
      there are moments when you think, 'Hey, this is pretty good', at the
      end realise that your craving for red meat is in no way satiated..."


      By Mary Louise Ruehr on Ohio news site Recordpub:

      'The Long Earth' by Terry Pratchett and Stephen Baxter is a sort of
      alternate-reality travelogue/adventure, featuring occasional bursts
      of Pratchett's trademark humor and delicious silliness... Lobsang is
      a fascinating character, and his relationship with Joshua is multi-
      layered. The two travel by airship and encounter a variety of people
      and bizarre creatures... This is good storytelling, and I had fun
      with it, but I wished some of the dropped storylines had been
      pursued further...".




      Again, a whirl of activity in the Discworld and Pratchett stage


      Crossfade Amateur Dramatics are presenting their production of Wyrd
      Sisters this weekend!

      When: Friday 21st and Saturday 22nd September 2012
      Venue: St Peter's Theatre, Fraser Road, Southsea, Portsmouth, Hants
      Time: Friday 7.30pm; Saturday two shows, 2:30pm & 7.30pm
      Tickets: £7/£5 concessions

      For more info, and to purchase tickets online, go to:



      Auditions for Cult Classic Theatre's exclusive 2013 stage production
      of Good Omens will take place in September. Come angels, come
      demons, come witchfinders, come one and all and see if there's a
      part for you!

      When: September 25th and 26th
      Venue: Langside College, 50 Prospecthill Road, Glasgow G42 9LB
      (tel. 0141 272 3600)
      Time: 7pm

      The show will take place at next march at Cottiers Theatre. Director
      Amy Hoff says, "The script is finished and we are ready to go!"

      The audition listing on Facebook:


      ...and do visit Cult Classic Theatre's website for more info:



      The Studio Theatre Club is holding the First Reading for their
      January 2013 production of Dodger next Monday (24th September).

      "Want to be involved? Come along at 19:30 on 24 September [to]
      Bullingdon Community Centre, Peat Moors, Oxford, OX3 7HS

      "Rehearsals for the world premiere staging of Sir Terry Pratchett's
      just-published book will begin at the STC on 24 September. The play
      will be staged on 22 to 26 January. Tickets will go on sale on 22
      October – book early!"


      contact us info@...


      Remember, Reaper Man is still running in Adelaide! Unseen Theatre's
      latest amazing Discworld production continues until the 29th of this
      month (see item 7.12 below for review):

      When: Thursday 20th, Friday 21st, Saturday 22nd, Wednesday 26th,
      Thursday 27th, Friday 28th and Saturday 29th September
      Venue: Bakehouse Theatre, 255 Angas Street, Adelaide SA 5000 (Tel:
      (08) 8227 0505)
      Time: 8pm all shows
      Tickets: Adults $20/Concession $17/Fringe Benefits $16/ Groups (of
      10+) $16
      BOOKINGS: www.bakehousetheatre.com, or cash at the door on the night
      (subject to availability)



      Remember, The Last Hero is still playing in Brisbane! The Brisbane
      Arts Theatre presentation continues on the following dates:

      Thu. 20th, Fri. 21st and Sat. 22nd September (plus special charity
      matinee on Sun. 23rd)
      Thu. 27th, Fri. 28th and Sat. 29th September
      Thu. 4th October, Fri. 5th and Sat. 6th (plus special charity
      matinee Sun 7th)
      Thu. 12th, and final performance on Fri. 13th October

      Venue: Brisbane Arts Theatre, 210 Petrie Terrace, Brisbane,
      Queensland, Australia
      Time: 8pm (charity matinees at 2pm)
      Tickets: AU$20-$37. To buy online, go to:


      All performance royalties will be donated to The Orangutan Project &
      Gill's Old Bastards, with special Sunday Matinee performances to
      support these two charities.


      For one view – review, that is – of the production, see item 7.13


      The Silchester Players will performing their production of Wyrd
      Sisters in October. Publicist Pete Reynolds invites one and all to
      this enthusiastic amateur theatre event!

      When: 12th, 13th, 19th & 20th October 2012
      Venue: Silchester Village Hall, near Basingstoke, RG7 2ND
      Time: Doors open 7.00pm, curtain at 7.30pm
      Tickets: Adults £8, Concessions £6, and can be booked by phone on
      0118 981 5600.

      For further details, go to:



      Tower Players present their production of Wyrd Sisters in October.

      When: 19th and 20th October 2012
      Venue: The Rose Theatre, Rugeley, Staffs
      Time: 7:30pm (doors open at 7pm)
      Tickets: Adults £7, Concessions £6
      Box Office 01889 584306
      Enquiries : towerplayers@...

      For more info, and to purchase tickets online, go to:


      Enquiries : towerplayers@...


      Scunthorpe Little Theatre Club will be performing Guards!
      Guards! in October.

      When: Wednesday 17th October to Saturday 20th October 2012
      Venue: The Plowright Theatre, Scunthorpe, Lincs
      Time: 7:30pm
      Tickets: £9
      Box Office: 0844 854 2776


      That's the charming little town of Emerald in Victoria, not the
      considerably less charming one in Queensland... Director Evie
      Housham and Assistant Director Ysabelle Dean (good Discworld-y name,
      that) will direct the Gemco Players in Guards! Guards! from the 9th
      to the 24th of November 2012.

      When: Friday 9th–Sunday 11th November, Friday 16th–Sunday 18th
      November, and Friday 23rd–Saturday 24th November
      Venue: Gem Community Arts Centre, 19 Kilvington Drive Emerald VIC
      3782 (Melway reference 127 E5)
      Times: 8pm for all Friday and Saturday shows. The Sunday
      performances (11th and 18th) are at 2.30pm
      Tickets: ring 0411 723 530 for bookings

      For further information, email (gemcoplayers@...) or enquire
      via snail mail:

      Gemco Players
      PO Box 480,
      VIC, 3782



      By Robert Edwards:

      "The baby-faced cast directed by Luke Sheppard executes Prachett's
      distinctive wit with precision and bite – its 36 members
      choreographed skilfully by Heather Douglas amidst the lumbering –
      though expertly managed – 8ft puppet of Death incarnate...
      Embracing the generous space afforded by the Kingston Rose stage,
      Victoria Spearing's moody, spartan, though engrossingly cleaver set
      beckons the audience through assorted worlds, bathed in
      sophisticated blends of lighting courtesy of Alan Valentine...
      Toksvig's lyrics, heartily accompanied by Dominic Haslam's bombastic
      score, loyally furnish Pratchett's beloved characters and are
      delivered with charm and boisterousness..."



      Of August's Rose Theatre production:


      There are additional photo albums on the page, of Death wandering
      around Kingston and also several more great shots of him meeting


      And a couple more good'uns of the Youth Music Theatre production,
      these from One Stop Arts:




      By Stephen Davenport

      "Although not quite as compelling as other Unseen re-imaginings,
      Reaper Man is an ambitious, thoughtful and potent comedy that
      realises the Discworld in spectacular fashion and benefits from Hugh
      O'Connor's charismatic work – in his first leading role – as DEATH.
      The tale is studded with references that make most sense to those
      intimate with Pratchett's novels, and who love his elegant satire,
      peppered with gleaming ideas, with a unique narrative and, most
      significantly, lots of heart... Produced with an amateur cast – all
      are solid – with astonishing imagination and homage, the play is
      bright, genuinely funny, gleefully entertaining, very clever and
      imaginative indeed..."



      Reviewed by John McMahon

      "Much about the production was excellent and this started with the
      comprehensive and attractive programme. The sets were simple but
      really effective and clever and the quality of the lighting added to
      the performance...In the acting department the men were uniformly
      good. John Grey as Lord Vetanari and John O'Connor as Boy Willie
      along with Daniel Grey as Rincewind and Greg Stiff as Captain Carrot
      all gave very believable performances. The barbarians were all well
      cast physically and worked well off one another. They really looked
      like the Barbarians that time forgot..."



      By Australian playwright Trevar Alan Chilver:

      "The play has a huge and diverse cast of characters, and director
      Kerrie Roberts did very well at casting performers with
      complementing multiple characters, which can often be a confusing
      task. Overall it's an impressive cast, although comic timing may not
      have been everyone's forte. As a play for the Women's Theatre Forum,
      I am not sure it quite gives adequate focus to the witches, or to
      Duchess Felmet. The action and plot really centre on the ineffectual
      Duke and his fool, played by Tony Cheshire and Jonathan Sharp, both
      of whom I've had the pleasure of directing in other productions.
      Despite the strength apparent here, I would certainly have enjoyed
      seeing greater depth and greater attention for Janine O'Dwyer's
      lovable Nanny Ogg, Elaine Noon's forthright Granny Weatherwax, and
      Tracy Thomas's young and idealistic Magrat. Nonetheless, Wyrd
      Sisters is a funny and enjoyable show with an enthusiastic cast..."




      8.1 Sir Pterry confers a new research award:

      "Nottingham scientist Dr Chris Medway has been awarded Alzheimer's
      Research UK's second dementia research fellowship named in honour of
      Sir Terry Pratchett OBE. The Sir Terry Pratchett Fellowship, awarded
      once every three years by the UK's leading dementia research
      charity, recognises Dr Medway, from the University of Nottingham, as
      one of the most talented young researchers in the UK. The occasion
      was marked at a special ceremony today (18 September) when Sir
      Terry, a Patron of Alzheimer's Research UK, presented the scientist
      with a glass award inscribed with a single word chosen by the
      author: Strive.

      "The three-year fellowship, worth £137,445, will see Dr Medway
      collaborate with leading researchers at the Mayo Clinic in Florida
      in the largest project of its kind, searching for rare genetic
      changes that may increase the risk of Alzheimer's disease... Using
      an advanced new technique called Next-Generation Sequencing, Dr
      Medway aims to reveal much more of the picture. As part of the
      project, he will travel to his US collaborators' lab, where he will
      have access to one of the world's largest banks of DNA samples with
      over 10,000 samples available, potentially holding a wealth of
      information that is waiting to be unlocked. By identifying genes
      that increase the risk of the disease, researchers can begin to
      unravel the causes – a vital step for developing effective
      treatments. Dr Medway said: 'I'm thrilled that Alzheimer's Research
      UK have chosen to invest in my research and delighted to receive the
      award from Sir Terry in person. Sir Terry's work in promoting
      understanding of Alzheimer's disease and his support of research has
      been fantastic, and it's a real privilege to receive this honour in
      his name. Alzheimer's affects so many people, yet we still have no
      effective treatments to stop the disease in its tracks. Through my
      research, I hope to uncover new clues about some of the risk factors
      for the disease and bring new treatments a step closer.'

      "Sir Terry, who has just published his new novel Dodger, said: 'It
      was good to meet Chris today, an inspiring scientist at the
      forefront of research. I'd like to congratulate him on receiving
      this fellowship – now he needs to bugger off and find a cure!
      There's only two ways it can go: researchers, with as much help as
      we can give them, may come up with something that reduces the
      effects of this dreadful, inhuman disease, or we will have to face
      the consequences of our failure to prevent the final years of many
      of us being a long bad dream. The strain on carers and their support
      is bad enough now; before very long the effects on the health
      service and society itself, will be unbearable.'..."


      8.2 A moving and thought-provoking op-ed piece by Nelson Jones in
      New Statesman about recently deceased euthanasia advocate Tony
      Nicklinson – a man who was and is much admired by Sir Pterry, as he
      mentions in the extended new interview (item 10 in this issue) –
      and the way the law views the issue of human euthanasia and assisted

      "'It is not for the court to decide,' said Lord Justice Toulson...
      'whether the law about assisted dying should be changed and, if so,
      what safeguards should be put in place.' Yet there seems little
      immediate prospect of legislation. Despite decades of debate and the
      fact that public opinion has long been sympathetic to euthanasia
      (provided that there are strict safeguards to protect the
      vulnerable) Parliament has so far proved reluctant to act. Instead,
      the law finds itself in a position of moral incoherence. On the one
      hand, it refuses to draw distinctions that most normal people would
      regard as obvious. As the Lord Chief Justice made clear in 2010,
      upholding the murder conviction of a mother who ended the life of
      her severely brain-damaged son, the law 'does not distinguish
      between murder committed for malevolent reasons and murder motivated
      by familial love.' A law that puts a loving mother in the same legal
      category as Ian Huntley, sentencing both to life imprisonment
      (albeit with different tariffs), is clearly deficient...

      "If Tony Nicklinson were a dog, it would not merely be legal to end
      his suffering, it would be a criminal offence not to do so. The
      RSPCA routinely prosecutes pet-owners who cannot bear to see their
      beloved animals put down. Perhaps the dog, if it could talk, would
      express a wish for its suffering to end; perhaps it would cling to
      life. Society assumes, though, that to be merciful and compassionate
      is to put the animal to sleep. Why should a fully conscious and
      intelligent adult human being be treated with less humanity and
      compassion than a dog? There is, in fact, no real conflict between
      the sanctity of life and the right of someone in Tony Nicklinson's
      position to end it...


      8.3 A good general overview of the state of the Alzheimer's "war":
      the disease, its possible causes, methods of treatment, and possible





      "Hear Ye! Hear Ye! The 3rd Biennial Irish Discworld Convention is
      coming upon us! 1st – 4th November 2013! The Radisson Blu Hotel,
      Limerick! Ladies and Gentlemen, Trolls and Dwarfs – of both definite
      and possible gender, Vamps, Vampires and Vampirinas, Orcs, Goblins
      and all other denizens who inhabit the Disc! We would like to invite
      you to the 3rd Biennial Discworld Convention. We bid you welcome!
      Welcome! Welcome! Welcome!"

      Membership prices are Adult €40
      Student €30
      Concession €30
      Teen (13-18) €15
      Junior (8-12) €10
      Mini (0-7) Free!

      To purchase your membership, go to:


      For more information in general:




      SADWCon 2012 Event Day: The Feegles Have Landed

      Date: 24th November 2012
      Time: Registration at 10 am for Opening at 11 am
      Venue: To be announced
      Ticket Price: Adult R150.00 – includes lunch, Children (under 13)
      R80.00 – includes lunch



      Reader Brian Dominic has written to claim credit for last month's
      DWcon "Auditor trap" and "interesting parking notice" photos (August
      main issue, item 9.5):

      "Those two were mine, posted on the Tumblr feed for DWCon by the
      technologically simple method of them borrowing the memory card out
      of my camera each morning and picking which pictures they wanted. I
      also spent a delightful hour or more in the Bar on Sunday night,
      chatting to the only barrister I've ever known to hide dyed blue
      hair under her formal wig – yes, it was your Convention's Chair!
      We talked about all sorts of things before getting shanghaied into a
      game of werewolf – my first ever!"

      Brian also had an entry the in 2012 DWcon Art Display – imagining
      the coming of Discworld railways, he designed and built a Luggage
      van (not to be confused with a luggage van) and loaded it with cute
      little Luggages! Look here:


      9.4 WADFEST 2013 NEWS

      Wadfest in 2013 will run from 9th–11th August at the new venue:

      Wood Green Animal Shelter
      King's Bush Farm
      London Road, Godmanchester,
      Cambridgeshire, PE29 2NH

      It is in fact a new and *improved* venue, offering a licensed bar
      and cafeteria, as well as a dedicated event area with integral sound
      system. And with the new venue comes a new and improved ticket
      price: £20, which is £5 less than the 2011 price.

      For more info, go to:




      In The Telegraph, a new interview, conducted by Elizabeth Grice:

      "By now, you fear, he will be slowing up, imagination fogged,
      creative powers shrivelled as a walnut. Instead of that, the little
      man in black is a delightful affront to medical science, looking
      wizardly well in his black fedora with a jaunty feather in the trim.
      His handshake is firm, his eyes piercingly bright. He talks for 90
      minutes with great fluency – although it does occur to me after a
      while that his habit of answering questions with an anecdote, or
      another question, may be a way of playing for time... 'I have to
      tell you that I thought I'd be a lot worse than this by now,' he
      says. 'And so did my specialist. At the moment, it's the fact that
      I'm well into my sixties [he is 64] that's the problem. All the
      minor things that flesh is heir to. This knee is giving me a bit of
      gyp. That sort of thing. And I'm well into the time of life when a
      man knows he has a prostate. By the time you've reached your sixties
      you do know that one day you will die and knowing that is at least
      the beginning of wisdom.'... Is putting a book together more
      difficult now? 'Better! Easier!' he yelps. 'If it all came back, I
      would probably stick with talking. Because we're monkeys. We
      chatter. It's easy to do. It's mutable.'..."

      The whole interview is well worth reading. To read it online, go to:




      It seems that with the huge success of Snowgum Films' Kickstarter
      appeal, Troll Bridge the Movie is finally moving at a faster rate.
      Here's some exciting news from director Daniel Knight:

      Well, it's been a little over a week and I'm extremely proud to
      announce that principle photography for Troll Bridge is wrapped!
      Finished! Finito! Troll Bridge the Moving Picture is in the can, as
      they say! After six epic weeks of set construction with Nightshade
      FX at Wicked of Oz Studios, we spent 5 solid days shooting all the
      action that occurs on and around the bridge. For some people like
      our awesome lead actor and make-up team, this resulted in 12 hour
      days to accommodate getting in and out of the prosthetics. Six weeks
      of set construction. Five days of shooting. Insane.

      Given that everyone working on this, has donated their time and
      talents for free, I can't even possibly begin to thank or praise
      everyone enough! I know myself and a few other key crew members
      have come down with a horrendous flu directly after shooting... our
      body's way of saying we pushed hard enough to make this film as
      awesome as possible. :)

      We'd like to take this opportunity to thank some of our corporate
      sponsors. Specialty Theatre Supplies for providing and installing
      our awesome green screen curtain, Wicked of Oz Studios for giving us
      a home to build over the past two months (and helping us during
      every step of the process), and lastly Inspiration Studios for
      offering their camera equipment, knowledge and advice. The camera we
      shot on is the same model that Peter Jackson is currently shooting
      The Hobbit on. Spectacular quality and our camera department
      executed some incredible footage with it!

      I'm not going to go through and name everyone who did amazing work
      on this shoot – the list at this point would be stupidly long and
      impossible to read – but you can see them all tagged in the
      production photos we've been uploading to Facebook. Check them out
      and tell them how awesome they are – they deserve it!

      Yes, we've also uploaded the photos to Flickr for those who prefer
      to be off the grid. You can check those out here. :)

      One person I'd like to call out though is Troll Bridge producer
      Ahren Morris. The work load and dedication he has given towards
      making any of this production possible is staggering – and I think
      warrants special note. Without him, Troll Bridge would just be a
      whole heap of talented people running around and smacking into one
      another. If anyone is the backbone for Troll Bridge, it's this guy.
      Thank you Ahren. For absolutely everything!

      So where does that all land us now? Post-production. We've still got
      a heap of work ahead of us, we're not out of the woods yet, but I
      think it's safe to say we've certainly broken the back of this film.
      It's all downhill from here (even if that hill is a particularly
      large one). Once we get the offline edit completed, and distributed
      amongst our various post-production departments we'll have a better
      idea on time frame for release. If you want to be involved with
      post, get in touch! The beauty with post is it can be quiet the
      global effort.

      So... in the meantime – check out our photos from the shoot! It's
      been an incredible journey thus far, and I can't wait to see what
      the next phase brings us!

      To read this announcement on the web, and see the photos, go to:




      From Roundworld, current news that sounds rather familiar:

      "Cane rats and 'shocking' quantities of illegal and 'potentially
      unsafe' meat have been sold to the public in east London, BBC London
      has found. Secret filming showed meat that broke food safety laws
      being prepared. West African and environmental health officer
      sources said Ridley Road Market, in Dalston, was a known hotbed of
      illicit meat activity... Confronted with BBC London's evidence,
      Islam Halal Meat; Punjab Halal Meat and Fish and Dalston Butchers
      denied they were selling illegal meat. The manager of Great
      Expectations, a food store which sold two Ghanaian rats to the
      undercover BBC researcher, said: "I don't sell rats, I never sell
      rats, I don't sell rats. I don't have any rats, why you come to
      video me?" The manager of Adom Trading, another shop that sold bush
      meat described as a Ghanaian "grass cutter" rat, also denied selling
      it. 'What you are saying is a lie, a 100% lie, I don't sell



      The Huffington Post has a feature on this, with instructive

      "An undercover investigation conducted by the news service in one of
      London's busiest food markets, Ridley Road Market, has revealed that
      massive quantities of bushmeat, including rat, goat and sheep, are
      being sold illegally... [BBC investigators] discovered that Ridley
      vendors were not only selling 'smokies' (blow-torched goat and sheep
      meat that is illegal under UK and European food laws), but also rat
      meat. Grasscutter rats, also known as cane rats (cat-sized rodents
      found throughout sub-Saharan Africa), were sold to undercover
      reporters by several butchers. The discovery at Ridley Road Market
      is not the first time evidence of an illegal meat trade has been
      found in England. In fact, the BBC writes that the bushmeat trade is
      'a persistent problem for the UK authorities.' In 2009, for example,
      The Independent reported that 10 tonnes of illegal bushmeat from
      Africa was being imported in London markets every day..."


      [Apparently, only one official complaint was registered. Possibly
      from a disappointed Dwarf? – Ed.]



      The City of Small Gods is a group for fans in Adelaide and South
      Australia. TCoSG have regular dinner and games nights, plus play
      outings, craft-y workshops, and fun social activities throughout the
      year. For more info and to join their mailing list, go to:


      A new group, the Broken Vectis Drummers, have held their inaugural
      meeting and will now meet on the first Thursday of every month from
      7.30pm at The Castle pub in Newport, Isle of Wight. The next meeting
      will be on Thursday 4th October. All new members and curious
      passersby are very welcome! For more info and any queries, contact:


      The Wincanton Omnian Temperance Society (WOTS) meets on the first
      Friday of every month at the famous Bear Inn from 7pm onwards.
      Visitors and drop-ins are always welcome! The next WOTS meeting will
      (probably) be on Friday 5th October.

      The next meeting of the Broken Drummers, London's original Discworld
      meeting group, will be from 7pm on Monday 1st October 2012 at the
      Monkey Puzzle, 30 Southwick Street, London W2 1JQ.

      For more info, contact BrokenDrummers@...


      The Northern Institute of the Ankh-Morpork and District Society of
      Flatalists, a Pratchett fangroup, have been meeting on a regular
      basis since 2005 but is now looking to take in some new blood
      (presumably not in the non-reformed Uberwald manner). The Flatalists
      normally meet at The Narrowboat Pub in Victoria Street, Skipton, N
      Yorks, to discuss "all things Pratchett" as well as having quizzes
      and raffles.

      Details of future meetings are posted on the Events section of the
      Discworld Stamps forum:


      Drummers Downunder meet on the first Monday of every month in Sydney
      at Maloneys, corner of Pitt & Goulburn Streets, at 6.30pm. For more
      information, contact Sue (aka Granny Weatherwax):


      Perth Drummers meet on the traditional date of first Monday of the
      month, from 6pm at The Vic Hotel, 226 Hay St, Subiaco. For more
      information contact:

      Daniel Hatton at daniel_j_hatton@...



      Blogger sevenbeasts offers a post titled "Where to start when youre
      in Discworld":

      "I'm currently reading Wee Free Men and it's great! Less humorous at
      times, with spurts of comedy most of the time. I'm entranced by his
      words, trapped by the legend of Granny Achings and in love with the
      limits of hard rock magic. Tiffany Aching is a precocious, unusually
      advanced child-and yet she still manages to be realistic. In the end
      that's what fantasy boils down to. A dream that you think could be
      real. But this isn't about blathering on about the bits of Wee Free
      Men I've read. This is about where to start in Discworld. And that
      has one of the easiest solution-what are you interested in? I,
      unusually started with the Colours of Magic, which I'd only really
      recommend to those interested in continuity..."


      Blogger Pete Howorth enjoyed The Long Earth:

      The book mostly takes the perspective from Joshua Valiente who is
      what's known as a natural stepper... It shows us what happens if
      dinosaurs weren't made extinct, what would happen if the moon formed
      from Earth, what'd happen if Earth was destroyed by a cataclysmic
      event, etc. Overall I think it's a fantastic concept and it really
      plays out well in the book, however I feel most of the work was done
      by Stephen Baxter, I'm not sure how much Pratchett was involved, it
      didn't seem like a Pratchett novel to me; never the less it was well
      worth the read...."


      Blogger easyondeyes offers a delighted, and delightful to read,
      full-marks review of Going Postal:

      "There are things Moist Van Lipwig has never been before. Moist Van
      Lipwig, for instance. And a postmaster for, well, another instance.
      He's been many other people but he's never tried the Mr Lipwig hat
      on for size... There are many things I loved about Terry Pratchett's
      Going Postal, the brilliant, shiny humour that beautifully balances
      the ever-present dark side in Pratchett's works, not the least of
      them. In fact, I think the humour is more evident in this one than
      in his other books I've recently read, just as is the satire. It is
      not often than Pratchett kills like this in his books while this one
      begins with one death and the threat of another. Even the telling of
      the story of the golems resounds with sorrowful instances from human
      history. The characters are lovingly created and even Moist Van
      Lipwig is easy to love with the wry sense of humour surrounding him
      and also because he is just exactly as the hero in this book should


      Blogger Rushed Reader was well satisfied by Snuff:

      "I have caught myself watching out for changes in his novels that
      tell us that it's time to say Goodbye to one of the UK's most
      unusual and prolific authors. The good news is that the time hasn't
      come – Snuff is inventive, well-written and further develops the
      Sam Vimes/City Watch arc of stories by taking the Commander out of
      the City and sending him on 'holiday' to his wife's privileged
      country seat... the challenges of family life are explored by
      contrasting Sam Jr.'s needs and demands with Sam Sr.'s adventures
      and past events which haunt him, tied together by his wife Sybil's
      gentle and understanding nagging and the social demands on his time
      arising from her status. I know these novels are considered part of
      the Sci-Fi/Fantasy genre, but in many ways they are a distorted and
      at times satirical version of our own world, sharply observed and,
      often poignantly, capturing the foibles and prejudices of people
      anywhere, even on a world held up by elephants and travelling
      through space on a giant turtle..."


      Blogger Reading Mater (note spelling) has mixed feelings about The
      Long Earth:

      There were moments when I... came across a piece that was so
      typically Terry Pratchett, but much of it must reflect the other
      author. Pratchett has a way of introducing important thoughts and
      issues in an off-hand or humorous way that I love. One of my
      daughters once wrote to him asking if he had studied in a seminary
      (=theology) and, as I remember, in his reply he said no, but that he
      thought a lot... much of the book is the hero's travelling, meeting
      various interesting animals and human living situations and stories,
      in the company of an artificial intelligence who is clearly a
      person. Intricate and interesting, but not answering the big


      Blogger Elisabetya ponders on the visual delights of The last Hero:

      "'The Last Hero', while beautifully illustrated (and once I've
      finished reading the story, I intend to go back and study the art in
      detail), is not a picture book as such, anyway, but even if it were
      I'd happily read it. Maybe not on the train, though, because I like
      to examine the pictures at my leisure and public transport doesn't
      lend itself to proper study. I love the art and pared back story of
      picture books, and fully appreciate the difficulty of writing one.
      Which set me pondering what it is about Pratchett that I love so
      much. It's the worldbuilding, I think, and the characters, as much
      as the clever plots. He creates a world that engages my imagination
      to the point that I want badly to live in it..."


      Blogger TylerDFC recommends Snuff, but not as a first Pratchett

      "There are details of the book that are a bit difficult to grasp,
      especially if you didn't read Thud, like the fact Sam is possessed
      (sort of) by a vengeance demon that helps him see in the dark and
      helps him with the case. While the narrative does get a bit muddy,
      the classic Pratchett satire is razor sharp and serves as an
      allegory against the mistreatment for any marginalized people. He
      does a great job of making you care about the victims and feel Sam's
      righteous rage at the injustice that must be corrected at all cost.
      For a Watch novel it is all standard stuff, but taking Sam out of
      the City does make for a new setting for him to get in to scrapes.
      The book moves fast and, as happens in nearly all Discworld novels,
      around the half way point the momentum picks up considerably and
      maintains a breakneck speed all the way to the end..."


      Blogger storytellersarchivist believes that`Night Watch, in addition
      to being a simply superb book, can be a good starting point for
      reading the Discworld series:

      "While the previous books have been mostly an ensemble cast
      production, this one belongs to Sam Vimes, probably one of my top
      three favorite characters in the setting. Honest (when he needs to
      be) and realistic (unless the cost is too high), he's the very
      definition of a copper. Not necessarily a good copper (he's been
      known to toss aside the badge), but he always ends up doing the
      right thing. So it isn't surprising that he tries to step in
      someone's shoes to fill the gap inadvertently opened up by Carcer's
      murderous ways... It's also interesting to see how Sam adapts to the
      past. He's a very different man now than he was then, and we get a
      good look at the contrasts between the two-and some of the
      similarities that seem to have held true over the years. His
      experiences put him ahead of virtually everyone in the Watch, even
      though they don't really know that. It also means that things he
      considers old are new again..."


      Blogger Sidonie Helena was less than enthralled by Snuff:

      "I really do love Terry Pratchett, and the discworld series, but I
      only found this installment okay. I'm not sure if it was the strong
      crime fiction ties (although, very funny at times) but I just
      couldn't get my teeth into it like other discworld novels. Don't
      miss understand me though, I didn't think Snuff was awful, anything
      but, but it just wasn't for me. Not even a barge named 'The
      wonderful Fanny' could rectify, what to me, was a dragging storyline
      (although that was quite a funny name). I think I'll just wait for
      dodger, it sounds like more of my type of read..."


      Blogger Chris Gladis aka the Labyrinth Librarian is back with a
      long, complex review/essay of Men At Arms – with illustrations, no

      "The idea that one has responsibility for one's own actions and
      well-being is dominant in the Guards books, no more so than in this
      one... this book is all about making choices in life. Vimes is
      engaged to be married to Sybil Ramkin, and thus his days as the
      Captain of the Watch are numbered. He may be in a better position
      than he was in the last book – having someone try to kill you is
      always refreshing, after all – but he knows that the life he's
      giving up, with all of its pain and trouble and heartache, is the
      life that he needs to live. Corporal Carrot needs to choose how best
      to serve the city of Ankh-Morpork. He is an excellent policeman,
      probably the only man on the Disc who could get in the middle of an
      incipient troll/dwarf race riot and shame them out of killing each
      other. People do what he says – he is, in his own words, 'good at
      being obeyed.' If he wanted to, he could run the city and the city
      would be glad to let him do it. But is that the best thing for the
      city? The troll Detritus and the dwarf Cuddy both have choices –
      will they conform to the ancient animosity that stands between their
      two races, or will they overcome it for the common good?

      "...it's a very gripping book. There's the mystery of it, of course
      – who has the Gonne, and why are they using it – but it's also a
      story about characters and the choices they make for themselves. My
      absolute favorites in this are Detritus and Cuddy. Trolls and dwarfs
      have a famous antagonism, stretching back to the ancient battle of
      Koom Valley (the only battle in the multiverse where both sides
      ambushed each other) and it would be very easy for them to fall into
      simple, culturally conditioned roles. They're better buddy cops than
      you'll likely to see in the movies, anyway. While it may be a cliche
      to say that they found common ground, learned to look past their own
      prejudices and learned to respect – nay, to like one another,
      that's exactly what they did. It is due to Pratchett's skill as a
      writer and as a creator of characters that we come to deeply care
      for this relationship, investing a lot of hope in it. We know that
      if Cuddy and Detritus can become friends, then maybe there's hope
      for everyone. This emotional investment pays off, and Pratchett
      reaches deep into our hearts at the end, showing that just because
      you start with a cliche, it doesn't mean it can't have depth. Of
      course, if you're not quite as analytical as I am, you can still
      enjoy it as a good murder mystery..."


      The ever-readable Cheryl Mahoney offers a loving review of Night

      "It's a slightly complicated plot, but somehow it works right along
      while you're actually reading it. I think that was true the first
      time I read it too. I liked it even better on a re-read, because I
      knew who everyone was. Part of the fun of the book is seeing
      recognizable characters when they were much younger... The best
      thing about Night Watch is that you get to see Vimes at his
      Vimesest. He's a copper and he's tough and he's practical. He
      doesn't seem to believe much in honor, while being very honorable.
      He believes in Law and he believes his job is to keep the peace and
      protect the ordinary man–while having no illusions about the
      nobility of your typical Ankh-Morporkian. He's the kind of man who
      doesn't fight a mob or yell them into submission. He steps out in
      front of the mob, lights a cigar, asks if they're having a pleasant
      night and would they like to step into the Watch House for some
      cocoa, and if not they really ought to go on home, it's getting
      cold. And it works. Vimes understands Ankh-Morpork and its people,
      he knows the streets and he knows the crowds and he can handle all
      of it. I love this book because we get to see all of this..."


      Finally, blogger Vicky Rayson returned to the Discworld books of her
      younger self's shelves and was not disappointed:

      "The characters that Pratchett creates are almost too interesting to
      be true. At one point whilst reading The Light Fantastic, I placed
      the book down on my lap, turned to my mum and said, 'people in the
      real world are just not this damn funny.' (I must add that this is
      not a criticism!) Amusingly enough however, my favourite character
      from these novels so far, even though it doesn't speak, is
      Twoflower's Luggage – a charming enchanted object if ever there
      was one.

      "When browsing the internet for a suggested reading order for this
      massive collection, I came across many people who suggested that The
      Colour of Magic (despite being chronologically first) is not the
      most suitable place in which to start your Discworld adventure.
      Perhaps I simply have not read enough of the novels to know better,
      but for me personally, The Colour of Magic made a perfectly pleasant
      place to begin. Pratchett provides you with enough of the history
      and science of the Discworld for you to feel that your feet are
      firmly placed upon it, without the information being too heavy
      going, which I often find to be the case in fantasy novels which are
      set in the author's own created world..."




      Georgia Simone's amazing and astonishingly detailed full-back tattoo
      of Great A'Tuin and the Disc:


      The Author himself, shaking hands with a certain seven-foot


      The Hat ends up in the oddest places:


      A collection of collages inspired by various Discworld persons,
      places and institutions, all created by the worryingly-named Opal
      Koboi (does she want to rule the Disc now?!):


      Kidby does Dodger's Dickens:


      Edible Discworld, continued...

      A marvellous confection of cupcakery:


      A birthday cake to go bananananas for:





      An updated article in the New York Daily News. You may recognise
      some of the photographs from the feature in the March 2012 main
      issue of WOSSNAME, but the content is new:

      "Zookeepers across the United States and Canada are discovering that
      apes also get excited about apps. As part of a program called Apps
      for Apes, 12 zoos across the two countries have been incorporating
      iPads into the enrichment time allotted for orangutans, the giant
      furry red primates native to Indonesia and Malaysia. 'We're finding
      that, similar to people, they like touching the tablet, watching
      short videos of David Attenborough for instance, and looking at
      other animals and orangutans,' said Richard Zimmerman, founding
      director of Orangutan Outreach, the New York City-based non-profit
      that runs the program...

      "At the Toronto Zoo, zookeeper Matthew Berridge uses apps such as
      Doodle Buddy for drawing, Montessori Counting Board and Activity
      Memo Pocket, a memory game, in addition to playing YouTube videos
      for the apes. 'It's a lot like when we're showing children pop-up
      books,' said Zimmerman, adding that the orangutans are among the
      most intelligent primates, with the intelligence level of a young
      child. Zookeepers are also investigating how communication apps,
      such as those for the autistic, can help the animals to express
      themselves better, according to Zimmerman. 'Let's say an orangutan
      has a toothache. He or she would be able to then tap on the iPad on
      a picture of a tooth and communicate it that way,' he explained. One
      very intelligent, but armless, orangutan at the Center for Great
      Apes in Wauchula, Florida is so intent on using the device that she
      uses her feet to navigate through the touchscreens..."


      The Orangutan Outreach main composite photo:



      "An orangutan called Peanut, suffering from non-Hodgkin lymphoma,
      has become the first in the world to be treated with aggressive
      chemotherapy just like a human. Peanut, who lives together with her
      fraternal twin Pumpkin at Miami's Jungle Island, has received
      numerous treatments to combat the aggressive lymphoma since
      August... Peanut's diagnosis came by chance when her veterinary team
      found she had an intestinal obstruction and further testing revealed
      the cancer. The private zoo had no board certified veterinary
      oncologist on staff and turned to the Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer
      Center at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine. A team
      there, along with UM's Division of Comparative Pathology, which
      specializes in wildlife, confirmed the diagnosis and is now
      providing guidance for Peanut's treatment. 'I've never had the same
      combination of fear and enthusiasm in one patient before,' said Dr.
      Joseph Rosenblatt, one of the doctors treating Peanut. 'We don't
      know what to expect and yet we're intensely curious and potentially
      hopeful that we can help the animal.' Working on an orangutan is a
      first for Rosenblatt, who has never worked on an animal larger than
      a mouse. 'When the animal looks at you in t<br/><br/>(Message over 64 KB, truncated)
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