jump to navigation

Monstrous Regiment – Terry Pratchett (20039 august 2, 2010

Posted by magnusnohr in Uncategorized.
add a comment

Karakter: 4

lest: august 10

Lengde: 10t

The bulk of Monstrous Regiment takes place in the small, bellicose country of Borogravia, a highly conservative country, whose people live according to the increasingly psychotic decrees of its favored deity, Nuggan. The main feature of his religion is the Abominations; a long, often-updated list of banned things. To put this in perspective, these things include garlic, cats, the smell of beets, people with ginger hair, shirts with six buttons, anyone shorter than three feet (including children and babies), sneezing, rocks, ears, jigsaw puzzles, chocolate, and the colour blue.

The list of «Abominations Unto Nuggan» often cause conflicts with Borogravia’s neighbours, and the uncertain whereabouts of Nuggan leads the inhabitants of Borogravia to deify their Duchess, to whom they pray instead. This is slowly causing problems, as on the Discworld, belief grants power. Borogravia is in the midst of a war against an alliance of neighbouring countries, caused by a border dispute with the country of Zlobenia. Rumor is that the war is going poorly for Borogravia, though the country’s leadership (and «everyone») denies it.

Polly Perks’s brother Paul is missing in action after fighting in the Borogravian army. Paul is a bit slow and not altogether right in the head, and even though Polly is more qualified to take over the family business (a famous pub known as «The Duchess»), according to Nugganitic law, women cannot own property, so if Paul does not return, the pub will be lost. Accordingly, Polly sets off to join the army in order to find him. Women joining the army are regarded as an Abomination Unto Nuggan, so Polly decides to dress up as a man (another Abomination) and enlists as Private Oliver Perks (taking her name from the folk song Sweet Polly Oliver).

While signing up, Polly encounters the repulsively patriotic Corporal Strappi, and the corpulent Sergeant Jackrum. Despite her apprehensions regarding Strappi, she kisses the Duchess – that is, she kisses a painting of said noble – and by doing so, joins up. Due to the shortage of troops, her fellow-soldiers include a vampire named Maladict, a Troll named Carborundum, and an Igor named Igor. They also include «Tonker» Halter, «Shufti» Manickle, «Wazzer» Goom, and «Lofty» Tewt.

That night, Polly encounters a mysterious voice, who assures her that although he or she knows that Polly is a girl, they won’t give her away. The voice also gives her some hints on how not to be discovered. Over the next few days, Polly makes a startling discovery; Lofty is also a girl. Since Lofty and Tonker are always together, Polly assumes that Lofty joined the army to follow her man, just like in «Sweet Polly Oliver«. Later, she finds out that Shufti is another girl – and a pregnant one. She also joined the army to find her man; in this case, the father of her child, who she’d only known for a few days and is known as Johnny.

Gradually, Polly discovers not only that everyone in her regiment is a woman, but also confirmation of Borogravia’s bleak situation. Most of her country’s forces are captured or on the run, and food supplies are limited. This point is driven home when Igor (actually Igorina) demonstrates her surgery talents and saves several lives among a group of badly injured fleeing soldiers.

The regiment, under the leadership of their inexperienced commanding officer Lieutenant Blouse, make their way toward the Keep where the enemy is based. Meanwhile, thanks to a chance encounter where the regiment unknowingly subdues and humiliates an elite enemy detachment, including Zlobenia’s Prince Heinrich, their exploits become known to the outside world through William de Worde and his newspaper. Their progress particularly piques the interest of Commander Vimes, who is stationed with the alliance at the Keep. Vimes has his officers track the regiment, occasionally secretly providing aid.

Polly and most of the regiment are able to infiltrate the Keep, disguising themselves as washerwomen, and once inside plot to release the captured Borogravian troops. They manage to do so, and Borogravia is able to retake much of the Keep, but when Polly admits they are women, their own forces remove them from the conflict and they are brought in front of a council of senior officers, where their fate will be decided. With the council about to discharge them and force them to return home, Jackrum barges in and intervenes, revealing that several of the military’s top officers are actually women as well. Polly eventually discovers that even Jackrum himself is a woman. The regiment is sent to the enemy and successfully negotiates a truce, and military rules are changed so that women are allowed to serve openly. Polly finds her brother alive and well and returns home to The Duchess. One of her regiment ‘sisters’ becomes the new leader of her country, having been driven by religious visions.

Sometime later, despite the peace they had desperately fought for, conflict breaks out again. Polly sneaks away from her profitable tavern and finds herself in the role of commander of boy-impersonating females who are marching off to war.

Reklamer

Assegai – wilbur smith august 2, 2010

Posted by magnusnohr in Uncategorized.
add a comment

Karakter: 6

lest: Juli 10

lengde: 20 timer

1913. Eks-soldaten, nå profesjonell jeger i Britisk Øst-Afrika, Leon Courtney, guider rike menn fra USA og Europa på storviltjakt på Masai-stammens territorium. Leon har utviklet et spesielt forhold til masaiene. En av klientene hans, den tyske greven Otto van Meerbach, eier et selskap som bygger fly og kjøretøy til keiserens voksende armé. Rett før utbruddet av første verdenskrig rekrutteres Leon til å samle informasjon fra von Meerbach. Men Leon hadde ikke regnet med følelsene som oppstår i møte med von Meerbachs vakre og gåtefulle elskerinne, Eva von Wellberg

Night Watch – Terry Pratchett (2002) august 2, 2010

Posted by magnusnohr in Uncategorized.
add a comment

Karakter: 5

Lest: juli 10

Lengde 10 t

Night Watch is the 29th novel in Terry Pratchett‘s Discworld series, published in 2002. The protagonist of the novel is Sir Samuel Vimes, commander of the Ankh-Morpork City Watch. A five-part radio adaptation of the novel was broadcast on BBC Radio 4 from February 27, 2008 that featured Philip Jackson as Sam Vimes and Carl Prekopp as young Sam.

The cover illustration of the British edition, by Paul Kidby, is a parody of Rembrandt‘s painting Night Watch. This is the first main-sequenceDiscworld novel not to have a cover by Josh Kirby. Kidby pays tribute to the late artist by placing him in the picture, in the position where Rembrandt painted himself. The actual painting by Rembrandt is used as the back cover illustration. Night Watch was nominated for a Locus Award in 2003.[1]

The Last Hero – Terry Pratchett (2001) august 2, 2010

Posted by magnusnohr in Uncategorized.
add a comment

karakter: 5

Lest: Juli 10

Lengde: 4timer

The Silver Horde, a group of aged barbarians introduced in Interesting Times, led by Cohen the Barbarian, set out on a quest. The first hero of the Discworld stole fire from the gods. As the last heroes remaining on the Disc the Silver Horde seek to return fire to the gods with interest, in the form of a large sled packed with explosives. With them is a bard, kidnapped so he can write the saga of their quest, and along the way, they are joined by Evil Harry Dread (the last Dark Lord), and Vena (an elderly heroine).

The heroes are disillusioned with the way their lives have turned out, and angry for having been allowed to grow old. Evil Harry is just as angry; despite his efforts to give his opponents the sporting chance as an Evil Overlord should, they won’t follow the Code by giving him one in return.

Since blowing up the gods will destroy the Discworld by disrupting the Disc’s magical field – the only thing holding the Disc together – Lord Vetinari organises the Wizards in a quest to stop them. Since the Horde is already near the centre of the Discworld and the home of the gods, speed is of the essence. Leonard of Quirm designs the Discworld’s second known spacecraft to slingshot under the Discworld and back around top to land on Cori Celesti, the mountain home of the gods. The vessel can carry only three people: Leonard of Quirm, CaptainCarrot Ironfoundersson, and Rincewind (although the Librarian somehow stumbles aboard). After a few mishaps including landing on the moon – in the hope that it will have sufficient oxygen to replenish their supplies after the Librarian’s presence threw off their calculations – and nearly having their swamp dragon powered spaceship (named «The Kite») explode on them, they crash in a spectacular fashion at Cori Celesti.

When the horde reach the gods (sneaking in disguised as gods themselves, though the gods have been manipulating their entire quest), Fate challenges Cohen to a game where he must roll higher than what Fate rolls on a standard 6-sided die. After Fate rolls a 6, Cohen cheats Fate by slicing the die in half in mid air with his sword; the two halves land with 6 and 1 facing up. Cohen also notes that even if he doesn’t succeed in killing the gods, someone will have tried, so someone will eventually try harder.

Carrot attempts to arrest the horde, but while initially intending to attack him, the horde realize that being a single brave man outnumbered by his foes (and probably a king in disguise), he is a Hero and their defeat is certain. After some explanation by Rincewind the horde takes the already live explosives and more or less jumps off the mountain. It is not explicitly stated that they die (Death does not appear to them as he sometimes does when Discworld characters die, although he subsequently appears to Vena, and is evasive about whether he is «collecting»), but Valkyries do come to take them to the Halls of the Slain, where a feast has been prepared for them. The Silver Horde instead steal a few of their horses, refusing to accept their death, and set off to find other worlds to «do heroic stuff in.»

Meanwhile Leonard is commanded by the gods to paint the entire roof of the Temple of Small Gods within 10 years (he finishes it in a few weeks), Carrot asks for a boon (to allow for the repairs of the Kite), Rincewind asks for a blue balloon and the Librarian asks for some library supplies (and avoids bouncing Blind Io’s head on the ground after he calls him a monkey).

As the Horde leave with the Valkyries’ horses, they stop to see the First Hero, cut off his chains, and hand him a sword that he may deal with his punisher. The bard, hardened by his experience, composes a new style of saga about it and invents the metal ballad.