Dec 16, 2013

Recent Reads: The Carpet People by Terry Pratchett

The Carpet People by Terry Pratchett
 Publisher: Clarion Books (first published November 15th 1971)/  Random House Audio
Available: NOW!!! New Edition November 2013

Format: Audiobook
Source: Random House Audio

Goodreads Synopsis:

 In the beginning, there was nothing but endless flatness. Then came the Carpet . . . That’s the old story everyone knows and loves. But now the Carpet is home to many different tribes and peoples, and there’s a new story in the making. The story of Fray, sweeping a trail of destruction across the Carpet. The story of power-hungry mouls—and of two brothers who set out on an adventure to end all adventures when their village is flattened.

It’s a story that will come to a terrible end—if someone doesn't do something about it. If everyone doesn’t do something about it . . .

First published in 1971, this hilarious and wise novel marked the debut of the phenomenal Sir Terry Pratchett. Years later, Sir Terry revised the work, and this special collectable edition includes the updated text, his original color and black-and-white illustrations, and an exclusive story—a forerunner to The Carpet People created by the seventeen-year-old nascent writer who would become one of the world's most beloved storytellers.


My Rating:
This was a strange book. I have heard many things about Terry Pratchett but I think because of all his works it has always seemed a bit daunting to start reading his stuff... this book just happened to sit in the Middle Grade genre and so I figured...hey why not give this one a chance...?

And I did and I am very glad that I did, however it was a very strange book. The Carpet people is now in its newest edition, but what that also means is that there were changes. Luckily Mr. Pratchett lets you know this with the introduction on the audiobook. The listener learns that it is not only a new edition but the first publishing was a long time ago, and the book was written a long time ago by Terry's teenage self, and his adult self has now tweaked the plot after many years being a successful writer.

My first thought upon hearing this was: well what are the differences? I may need to track down an earlier edition now because this edition was great!

So the plot is about a group of people, the Carpet people; the Carpet is where they live in between the hairs (like your living room carpet...or maybe if you think of this in the terms of Whos -- the Horton Hears kind...) but the Carpet is their Earth so to speak. We meet a few different tribes and learn how they come together to defeat a bigger enemy and the terrifying Fray, which is moving through their lands causing destruction and chaos. 

The characters are fun and light most of the time, their battles and accomplishments highlighted; and it was imaginative and an epic fantasy world or swords, beasts, and threats abound.

The audiobook was 5 discs long, so much shorter than most that I listen to, and it seemed to start and keep running, I did not want to stop listening, but I also don't want to tell you too much for fear of spoiling it for anyone new to the tale.

The last few tracks of the audiobook include some of the original weekly stories of the Carpet People and are fun shorts that show how that world was created a long time ago.

I think adults and children would be thoroughly entertained by this book, whether it is in the car or reading a paper copy -- that one even has pictures! The CDs also come with a PDF (which I have not viewed yet, and I cannot wait to compare my mental images of the characters and tribe with how Mr. Pratchett illustrated them).

Want to listen to some? Do it here!

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