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Maskerade by Terry Pratchett

Maskerade (1995)

by Terry Pratchett

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Discworld (18), Discworld: Witches (5)

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English (71)  Dutch (2)  Polish (1)  German (1)  Spanish (1)  Italian (1)  Finnish (1)  All (78)
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First off, you have to be a fan of Phantom of the Opera to really get this book. Pratchett lifts the story wholesale, and proceeds to slaughter it with the witches of Lancre and one witch-in-training, who doesn't want to be a witch. Good stuff. ( )
  BookstoogeLT | Dec 10, 2016 |
This book is "Pratchett does Phantom of the Opera". But of course, Nanny Ogg and Granny Weatherwax have to come barging in to figure everything out. A Lancre girl, Agnes aka Perdita, goes off to make her fortune at the opera, but because she doesn't have the right look, she has to provide only the voice for the new diva, while the skinny girl gets all the credit. It turns out there's a lot more going on in the Opera house, and it takes the combined forces of the witches and the watch to figure it out. Plus there's an epic sword fight. ( )
  jlharmon | Nov 3, 2016 |
Maskerade is the fifth book in the Witches subseries of Discworld. I usually enjoy the Witches books a little more than the others. I didn’t think this one was as uproariously funny as Wyrd Sisters or Witches Abroad, but I did enjoy it.

The story centers on some goings-on at an opera house. The opera house has always had a mysterious ghost with certain demands, but lately this ghost seems to have gone off the deep end. It's murdering people and leaving crazy notes with lots of exclamation points. As anybody who has read a few Pratchett books probably knows, multiple exclamation points are a sure sign of insanity!!!!!

I’ve had very little exposure to the opera, so I’m sure there were some jokes that went over my head, but I felt like most of it was pretty accessible to me. As expected, there are a lot of Phantom of the Opera references as well as some fun-poking at opera in general. The story itself was entertaining, with a bit of a mystery feel to it, but the solutions to the mystery were predictable to the point where I suspect they weren’t really intended to be a surprise.

Character-wise, Magrat is only spoken about and doesn’t show up personally. I was actually happy about that since I think she can be annoying. Granny and Nanny are there though, and they’re as much fun as always. Another character who we had met briefly in a previous Witches book took a major role in this story, and I liked her quite a bit. I definitely liked her more than Magrat.

I was surprised to look ahead on the reading list and realize there’s only one more Witches book to go. I hope that won’t be the last of Granny and Nanny because they’re so much fun. The Tiffany Aching series seems to be a young adult offshoot of the Witches series, so hopefully they’ll show up at least a little bit here and there. ( )
  YouKneeK | Oct 25, 2016 |
1 Jan 2000
19 July 2014

This was one of the first Discworld books I ever read, and I wouldn't recommend it as a good place to start. There's Granny Weatherwax and Nanny Ogg (and Greebo) which is to the good, but Death makes only a token appearance, and it isn't very kind. There's a fair amount of fat-bashing, and the pretty girl is presented as an absolute idiot, and the dancers don't eat (as if that weren't pretty much a condition of their employment). Plus it's a riff on Phantom of the Opera which isn't a favorite story or opera with me.

There is some lovely stuff about the actual Opera House building which puts me in mind of many any old theater of my acquaintance, and how creepy they are without a lot of people in them. Against that you have to balance the business of pity toward Agnes. And everyone pities Agnes, despite her astounding voice, because there's just no way she's ever going to get a man. Probably even Pratchett realized how poorly he'd done by her, since he didn't try to give her a substantial role in another book.

Personal copy. ( )
  Kaethe | Oct 17, 2016 |
It's pleasant, but not really funny. None of the characters, apart from the returning ones, are at all memorable. As in, when they'd show up, I recognized that I'd read the names before, but that's about all I had. ( )
  comfypants | Jun 21, 2016 |
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» Add other authors (28 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Terry Pratchettprimary authorall editionscalculated
Galian, Carl D.Cover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Kirby, JoshCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Lindforss, PeterTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Planer, NigelNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Stone, MikeAuthor photosecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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My thanks to the people who showed me that opera was stranger than I could imagine. I can best repay their kindness by not mentioning their names here.
First words
The wind howled.
'Well, basically there are two sorts of opera,' said Nanny, who also had the true witch's ability to be confidently expert on the basis of no experience whatsoever. 'There's your heavy opera, where basically people sing foreign and it goes like "Oh oh oh, I am dyin', oh, I am dyin', oh, oh, oh, that's what I'm doin'", and there's your light opera, where they sing in foreign and it basically goes "Beer! Beer! Beer! Beer! I like to drink lots of beer!", although sometimes they drink champagne instead. That's basically all of opera, reely.'
The singers all loathe the sight of one another, the chorus despises the singers, they both hate the orchestra, and everyone fears the conductor; the staff on one prompt side won't talk to the staff on the opposite prompt side, the dancers are all crazed from hunger in any case...
Greebo could, in fact, commit sexual harassment simply by sitting very quietly in the next room.
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Book description
Im Opernhaus von Ankh-Morpork huschen maskierte Gestalten durch die Kulissen und führen Niederträchtiges im Schilde. Zwei alte Damen beobachten den Kronleuchter und murmeln dazu Sätze wie: "Da wartet ein Unglück darauf, daß es passiert ..." Ja, Oma Wetterwachs und Nanny Ogg, die größten Hexen der Scheibenwelt, haben ihren Auftritt.
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 006105691X, Mass Market Paperback)

There are strange goings-on at the Opera House in Ankh-Morpork. A ghost in a white mask is murdering, well, quite a lot of people, and two witches (it really isn't wise to call them "meddling, interfering old baggages"), or perhaps three, take a hand in unraveling the mystery. Fans of the popular Discworld will be happy to see some old friends again in Maskerade, the 18th novel in the series. --Blaise Selby

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:24:23 -0400)

(see all 6 descriptions)

When Discworld's opera house is found to be haunted, a trio of witches is summoned to flush out the unwanted ghost but the results only seem to complicate matters.

» see all 9 descriptions

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