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Last Hero by Terry Pratchett

Last Hero (original 2001; edition 2007)

by Terry Pratchett

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3,931521,850 (4.02)92
Title:Last Hero
Authors:Terry Pratchett
Info:Gollancz (2007), Paperback, 160 pages
Collections:Your library

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The Last Hero by Terry Pratchett (2001)


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English (50)  Polish (1)  Slovak (1)  All languages (52)
Showing 1-5 of 50 (next | show all)
Another hilarious Discworld novel from the brilliant Terry Pratchett. Cohen the Barbarian and his mates are a comical band of 'heroes'. And then you have the Gods, and their arrogance. Mix in the Patrician, Rincewood, & Captain Carrot, plus a flying machine that must be slung shot under the disc and only hilarity can ensure.

Terry Pratchett's had the exceptional gift of writing irony and making comic observations of the real life world through his writing.

This particular edition is illustrated by Paul Kidby, and it is wonderful to see the Discworld and it's characters come to life on the page in visual form too. Some truly breathtaking images.

'Tell me,' said Blind Io. 'Is there a god of policemen?'
'No, sir,' said Carrot. 'Coppers would be far too suspicious of anyone calling themselves a god of policeman to believe in one.'
'But are you a gods-fearing man?'
'What I've seen of them certainly frightens the life out of me, sir. And my commander always says, when we go about our business in the city, that when you look at the state of mankind you are forced to accept the reality of the gods.'

( )
  purplequeennl | Jul 11, 2018 |
The illustration is fabulous. Although the loin wear of Cohen the Barbarian and Carrot are distractingly uncomfortable looking. The story is silly Prachett, but the points are there with some screamingly funny bits. ( )
  quondame | Apr 18, 2018 |
Just what I needed to wash away the lingering after-effects of Revelation Space... short, sweet, perfect Pratchett. If you've ever wondered why satire is an important artform, Pratchett shows us, with his uncanny ability to take cliches and archetypes, twist them around, and use them to teach us a little more about ourselves:

"He'd never been keen on heroes. But he realised that he needed them to be there, like forests and mountains... he might never see them, but they filled some sort of hole in his mind. Some sort of hole in everyone's mind." ( )
  fancypantalons | Oct 27, 2017 |
The Last Hero is the seventh book in the Rincewind subseries. It’s actually an illustrated novel, the first one I’ve read. It was only available as an illustrated version (unlike Eric which I read in a non-illustrated format), and I do think some of the illustrations were important to the story. If nothing else, the ending might not make much sense without the corresponding picture. The reader could probably guess what it showed if they’d been paying attention to the story, though.

The story itself is short, but cute. Cohen and his horde of heroes are on a quest, and their heroic shenanigans might destroy the entire Discworld. A variety of familiar characters get involved in trying to prevent this and, naturally, Rincewind gets dragged into things against his will. Sort of.

I’m not a very visual person, so illustrations don’t usually do much for me. Despite that, I still enjoyed the pictures in this book. I particularly enjoyed seeing illustrations for the various characters I’ve read about over the past many books. I can’t say too many of them actually looked the way I had pictured them in my mind, but they were still fun to see. The Rincewind illustrations in particular were great. The one on the cover is funny, but not very representative of the others. The other Rincewind illustrations throughout the book all show him with this perpetual frown and a dejected look that made me laugh every time he showed up in a picture. ( )
2 vote YouKneeK | Mar 9, 2017 |
The Gods are on notice as the greatest heroes of the Disc are headed for their heavenly abode on a quest to return the fire stolen by the first hero, except there’s a catch. The illustrated Discworld novella The Last Hero is the twenty-seventh in the humorous fantasy series written by Terry Pratchett and assisted by artist Paul Kirby. And once again Pratchett follows his first protagonist Rincewind racing to save the world.

Cohen the Barbarian and his Silver Horde have left their imperial possessions on the Counterweight continent and are heading for the home of the Disc’s Gods with the gift of fire first stolen by the legendary First Hero, unfortunately the old men are planning to blow the place to smithereens which would have the unfortunate side effect of destroying the Disc. To the rescue is Leonardo da Quirm, Captain Carrot, and a reluctant Rincewind—who only joins because if he didn’t he’d find himself on the journey by some horrible twist of fate—traveling the quickest way they can get to the abode of the Gods, over the Rim and through space. This short story is given a remarkable boost with the illustrations of Paul Kirby who brings to life so many great characters from all over the Disc, as well as two new secondary characters. Yet not only do characters get a stunning portrayal but so does the geography of the Disc as well in stunning pictures that makes you just want to stop reading and stare at them to take in all the details.

The novella itself is pretty straight forward unlike a regular Discworld novel in which little sidebars populate the narrative to humorous effect, but with The Last Hero the illustrations more than make up for that. While considered a part of the Rincewind series, the Disc’s worst wizard is more a tag along character in a story dominated by usually secondary characters. However for longtime fans this won’t be a problem given the story and the amazing illustrations. ( )
1 vote mattries37315 | Dec 25, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 50 (next | show all)
Pratchett lets fly sly volleys at today's civilization and skewers nearly every barbarian-fantasy cliché rampant in too many books and films. This far-out farce rollicks along hilariously enough to make the inevitable aging process, if not palatable, at least worth a few good belly laughs.
added by Shortride | editPublishers Weekly (Oct 15, 2001)

» Add other authors (7 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Terry Pratchettprimary authorall editionscalculated
Kidby, PaulIllustratormain authorall editionsconfirmed
Kidby, SandraIllustratorsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Briggs, StephenNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Wilkins, RobDesignersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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For Sandra, Jo, Sam & Josh.
Fondest memories of Dan . . .
Paul Kidby 2001
In Loving Memory Old Vincent
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The place where the story happened was a world on the back of four elephants perched on the shell of a giant turtle.
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0060507772, Paperback)

A new Discworld story is always an event. Terry Pratchett's The Last Hero is unusually short, a 40,000-word "Discworld Fable" rather than a full novel, but is illustrated throughout in sumptuous color by Paul Kidby.

The 160 pages cover the series' longest and most awesome (but still comic) journey yet, a mission to save all Discworld from a new threat. An old threat, actually. Aged warrior Cohen the Barbarian has decided to go out with a bang and take the gods with him. So, with the remnants of his geriatric Silver Horde, he's climbing to the divine retirement home Dunmanifestin with the Discworld equivalent of a nuke--a fifty-pound keg of Agatean Thunder Clay.

This will, for excellent magical reasons, destroy the world.

It's up to Leonard of Quirm, Discworld's da Vinci, to invent the technology that might just beat Cohen to his goal. His unlikely vessel is powered by dragons, crewed by himself and two popular regular characters, and secretly harbors a stowaway. Before long we hear the Discworld version of "Houston, we have a problem...."

Kidby rises splendidly to the challenge of painting both funny faces and cosmic vistas. As Pratchett puts it, The Last Hero "has an extra dimension: some parts of it are written in paint!" New characters include Evil Dark Lord Harry Dread, who started out with "just two lads and his Shed of Doom," and a god so tiresome that his worshippers are forbidden chocolate, ginger, mushrooms and garlic.

Pratchett's story alone is strong and effective, with several hair-raising frissons contrasting with high comedy; Kidby's paintings make it something very special. Not to be missed. --David Langford, Amazon.co.uk

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:18:57 -0400)

(see all 5 descriptions)

Disgruntled by the complications of modern life, an aged Cohen the Barbarian calls together a group of his elderly friends to join him in a quest to climb Discworld's highest mountain to meet the gods.

(summary from another edition)

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