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Sourcery by Terry Pratchett

Sourcery (original 1988; edition 2001)

by Terry Pratchett

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8,02394400 (3.7)146
Authors:Terry Pratchett
Info:HarperTorch (2001), Mass Market Paperback, 288 pages
Collections:Your library
Tags:Discworld, Wizards

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Sourcery by Terry Pratchett (1988)



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Showing 1-5 of 87 (next | show all)
the 8th son of an 8th son is a Sourcerer. This ten year old is taken over by his father [who has escaped Death, for the time being, by becoming part of his son's staff] and the End of the World is almost brought about. Rincewind the Wizzard manages to stave it off. I love the 4 Horsemen of the Apocrylipse, they crack me up! ( )
  BookstoogeLT | Dec 10, 2016 |
On the Discworld, the eighth son of an eighth son is a wizard. But what of the eighth son of a wizard? As wizards insist that celibacy is necessary for magic, this question remained unanswered for over two thousand years. The answer is: a sourcerer. This sourcerer has come to the stronghold of Discworld wizardry, the Unseen University, and insisted that wizards are the rightful rulers of the world. Sounds great, but magical rule upsets the balance of things. Sourcery produces too much raw magic and kick-starts the Apocralypse (a portmanteau of apocryphal and apocolypse). Rincewind, the most cowardly wizard on the Disc has already run away by this point, leaving the Librarian (who is an orangutan--long story) to protect the magical books all by himself. Along with the help of a hero who wishes to be a hairdresser, a hick who thinks he's a hero, and a homicidal Luggage case, Rincewind must defeat the sourcerer and restore the natural balance of magic to Discworld. Can he do it, or will he just run away again?
  Jessiqa | Aug 21, 2016 |
I have a love/hate r'ship with the Discworld books.
I enjoy every encounter I have with Rincewind, the Luggage, and the Librarian.
Carrot is mildly interesting
Bits of concepts throughout the series are clever.
Pretty much the rest of the characters, and books, annoy and/or frustrate me. ( )
  Cheryl_in_CC_NV | Jun 6, 2016 |
"Maybe even wizards need a little magic in their lives." (pg. 51)

Another wane in my wax-and-wane experiences of Terry Pratchett's Discworld novels. Sourcery was light and funny – another enjoyable adventure. However, there was little to distinguish it from previous books in the series: there's a lot of wordplay and a busy plotline in which a bunch of misfits head out on an adventure and end up having to save the world. The book sees the return of the reluctant hero Rincewind, one of Pratchett's best creations (after Death), although the attempt to insert a moral-of-the-story into the cowardly wizard's character arc (and Coin's) seemed a bit clumsy to me.

Furthermore, the ending was suspiciously similar to the save-the-world magic extravaganzas in The Light Fantastic and Equal Rites, though I did enjoy the post-post-apocalyptic coda in which various characters relax as the dust settles. It was warm and sweet. And this is why Sourcery works: we don't take these stories too seriously. We visit the Discworld solely for escapism and some laughs, and Pratchett always delivers. Like wizards, sometimes we just need a little magic in our lives.
  MikeFutcher | Jun 3, 2016 |
In publication order, this is the 5th book in the Discworld series and the 3rd book in the Rincewind subseries.

The general premise is that sourcery comes to the Discworld for the first time in many, many years. Sourcery is more powerful magic than the kind your typical wizard or witch can do, and in the past it led to wars that made sections of the disc uninhabitable. Rincewind flees the university to avoid the trouble and naturally ends up in even more trouble.

I had fun seeing Rincewind again. I expect, once more time has passed, Rincewind will be the character from Discworld that I look back on the most nostalgically, even if there are other characters I enjoy more. He was my first introduction to the series, and he has such a memorable personality. The luggage is always fun too; I liked that it was given a little more personality in this book and we even got to read from its perspective for a little while.

As with the earlier two Rincewind books, the story kind of zig-zags all over the place. Even though I could guess where it would end up, there was really no predicting where it would go throughout the middle. The book is funny of course, with the higher level of ridiculousness found in the earlier Rincewind books. One benefit of such a zany story is that continuity errors just kind of blend in with the madness. I tried to be vague in describing the continuity error, but decided to put it in spoiler tags anyway to be safe: When Rincewind went back to the university, he seemed to immediately know who the salamander was even though those events had happened while he was away and he hadn’t yet had any apparent opportunity to learn what had happened. But I guess, if you can converse with a monkey without confusion, surely you can handle such minor tasks as recognizing the original identity of a newly-converted salamander without being introduced. I guess the dog might have been a hint for him if he'd met the "salamander's" dog in the past.

The ending was a bit open-ended, but I wasn’t too bothered by it because there were plenty of hints. I look forward to hopefully getting more definite answers in the next Rincewind book, though. One thing that bothered me more was that Rincewind said something that contradicted events from Equal Rites, without any mention of Esk or anything that had happened in that book..

I’m moving on to Wyrd Sisters next, the second book in the Witches subseries. After that, I’ll probably take another Discworld break. ( )
  YouKneeK | May 17, 2016 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Terry Pratchettprimary authorall editionscalculated
Kidd, TomCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Kirby, JoshCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Planer, NigelNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Sweet, DarrellCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Many years ago I saw, in Bath, a very large American lady towing a huge tartan suitcase very fast on little rattly wheels which caught in the pavement cracks and generally gave it a life of its own. At that moment the Luggage was born. Many thanks to that lady and everyone else in places like Power Cable, Neb., who don't get nearly enough encouragement.
First words
There was a man and he had eight sons.
The subject of wizards and sex is a complicated one, but as has already been indicated it does, in essence, boil down to this: when it comes to wine, women and song, wizards are allowed to get drunk and croon as much as they like.
Two thousand years of peaceful magic had gone down with the drain, the towers were going up again, and with all this new raw magic floating around something was going to get very seriously hurt. Probably the universe.
Strangely enough, he wasn't particularly angry. Anger is an emotion, and for emotion you need glands, and Death didn't have much truck with glands and needed a good run at it to get angry. But he was mildly annoyed. He sighed again. People were always trying this sort of thing. On the other hand, it was quite interesting to watch, and at least this was a bit more original than the usual symbolic chess game, which Death always dreaded because he could never remember how the knight was supposed to move.
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Book description
There was an eighth son of an eighth son. He was, quite naturally a wizard. And there it should have ended. However (for reasons we had better not go into), he had seven sons. And then he had an eighth son...a wizard squared...a source of magic...a Sourcerer.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0061020672, Mass Market Paperback)

When last seen, the singularly inept wizard Rincewind had fallen off the edge of the world. Now magically, he's turned up again, and this time he's brought the Luggage.

But that's not all....

Once upon a time, there was an eighth son of an eighth son who was, of course, a wizard. As if that wasn't complicated enough, said wizard then had seven sons. And then he had an eighth son -- a wizard squared (that's all the math, really). Who of course, was a source of magic -- a sorcerer.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:06:59 -0400)

(see all 4 descriptions)

Rincewind, the world's most inept wizard, magically returns after falling off the edge of the world, this time carrying the Luggage, in a humorous fantasy of magic and mayhem.

(summary from another edition)

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