Tuesday, August 20

Terry Pratchett & Friends

- September 30, 2013

Pratchett is a legend that created a Legend. The international best-selling author emerged from a world of journalism and libraries and created Discworld, a mythical kingdom that rode on the back of four elephants who in turn were riding a giant turtle. If it all sounds a bit silly, the stuff of geeky students, then think again. Discworld is beautifully penned, richly funny and deeply subversive stuff that extracts the urine from the genre whilst at the same time enhancing it.

Sadly in the last few years Pratchett has been diagnosed as having a form of Alzheimer’s. Despite this the man continues to work and collaborate and his live appearance for the City Reads project was a rare opportunity to hear the man himself talking about his books. Aided by two directors of his Narativa company they gave us a 90 minute treat, filled with wit and wisdom. Perhaps not as fast as in the past, his thoughts are as clear and incisive as ever. He shows no signs of giving in to the illness but certainly acknowledges it – “So many things to write, so little time.”

He maintains a wonderfully dark side too –  “Are there any school teachers here? Yes. I have a gun you know!”. With readings from his new book, a few audience questions and lots of laughter it was an afternoon of delight that once again affirmed that the City Reads project is more than worthwhile. Clearly his team look after him well and after 90 minutes he left with a few choice words – “Once you have no fear of dying the world is your mollusc”, no doubt Sir Terry will carry on adding to that rich fruits de mer that has been his literary career so far.

Concert Hall, Brighton Dome, 29 September 2013
Rating: ★★★★★
Andrew Kay

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