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Thief of Time by Terry Pratchett

Thief of Time

by Terry Pratchett

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Showing 1-5 of 74 (next | show all)
This is a smart, funny, thoughtful exploration of form, function, and time. This is another book with a complicated set of interwoven plots and characters. There are the Monks of History who live in one perfect day and manage time, shuffling it around when it is needed or is being wasted. There is Jeremy, a clockmaker in Ankh-Morpork who is a bit off but has been tasked with making an impossible device. There is Lobsang Ludd, former thief and current apprentice to Lu-Tse, a sweeper for the Monks. There are the Auditors, those grey hooded rule-makers who can't stand the diversity and unpredictability of human life. And then there is Susan and, of course, her grandfather, Death. Oh! And Nanny Ogg makes a couple of appearances! Love her.

So, it was a bit confusing at first as each of the plots was starting up but by the end the stories clicked together like, well, clockwork. And there were two moments at the end that were some of the sweetest moments in the entire Discworld series. This is definitely my new favorite Death book. Pratchett really gets better through the years and is best when he couples complexity with depth while keeping his trademark humor and intelligence.

http://webereading.com/2017/03/marchmagics-thief-of-time.html ( )
  klpm | Apr 5, 2017 |
Thief of Time is the fifth and final(!) book in the Death subseries of Discworld. I’ve always been a little iffy on this subseries, but I think this was my favorite of the five books. The general story is that an Auditor has commissioned a clockmaker, Jeremy, to make a special clock. What the Auditor doesn’t tell Jeremy is that this clock will supposedly have the power to stop time, bringing an end, or at least a permanent pause, to the Discworld.

Death didn’t actually get that much page time in this book. Maybe that’s partly why I enjoyed it. I like Death in small doses, when he’s being funny or clever or profound, but he starts to grate on my nerves in larger doses. This was especially true in the first three books where he essentially shirked his responsibilities and let other people take up the slack for him. Meanwhile, he went off and had what would be considered a mid-life crisis if he were a human. Happily, Death has seemed better-grounded in these last two books, so I’ve started enjoying his character more.

In this book, we finally get a chance to learn more about the Auditors. Unsurprisingly, Susan shows up again. I enjoyed most of her sections, especially the ones at the beginning. I also really liked the characters of Lu-Tze and Lobsang who take up a large portion of the story. They’re mostly just your stereotypical well-respected and mysterious monk with his exceptionally clever but impatient apprentice, at least at first, but they were fun characters. The master/apprentice portrayal is a common plot device in fantasy, but it’s one that I tend to enjoy.

I expected this book to earn 4 stars up until maybe the last 25% or so, at which point I started to lose interest in the story. Somehow the climatic events were the most boring parts to me, I think because it went too far into “random chaos” territory at times. In the end, I decided on a rating of 3.5 stars, rounded up to 4 on Goodreads. ( )
  YouKneeK | Mar 4, 2017 |
These Discworld books are definitely the sorts of books that you can read many times and enjoy like the first time you read them, while also still discovering new things you didn't notice before and understanding things you didn't realize you didn't understand the last time. Books like that are wonderful and, often, timeless. No pun intended.

At first, the book's plot seems incoherent and you're left kind of confused and wondering how it's all going to tie together. Especially since so many of the characters are doing things so far away from each other. This is not, however, a detraction or deficiency with the writing. It's designed to keep you guessing and you definitely do! And even when you think you've figured it out, you eventually find out that even if you were right you were only half right and it's a wonderful feeling. Even when the plot seems like it might turn predictable, it throws a sudden curve ball. Brilliant!

When the plot does begin to tie together, and the connections between the characters (especially those which seemed to have absolutely no connection whatsoever) it just amps up the awesome and everything seems to speed up.

I will say that the lisp that was given to Igor is difficult to read, at least for me. It slowed me down a bit and was a bit confusing on some words. This was a very minor annoyance, though, and not worth a dock in rating.

In addition, I was personally tired of seeing SO MUCH of Lu-Tze and Lobsang by the time I got to the middle of the book. However, it was clear almost from their first appearance that they were both very important characters to the book and still managed to be interesting (I love the way they get along and talk to each other), so even though this was a mild annoyance I didn't think it was worth a dock in the rating, either.

I really loved the plot, though, and I loved the way it all tied together. And I was very satisfied with the ending each character got. And Lobsang ended up being my favorite character of the book, despite what I said above.

I do have to wonder, though, whatever happened to Clodpool. :p It's the only thing I can think of that wasn't answered. But, he was only mentioned a scant few times, and only in the past, so I didn't really expect to be told what happened to him. I just am personally curious, anyway.

I would definitely recommend this book. ( )
  madam_razz | Jan 19, 2017 |
The rules of the universe are once again being bent to endanger life, but this time it is really Time itself that is being used as the weapon of choice. The 26th installment of Terry Pratchett’s Discworld series finds many characters quite literally being a Thief of Time from certain points of view, yet only one can truly change history.

The Auditors of Reality attempt once again to organize the universe by getting rid of life by literally stopping everything by having a clockmaker construct the perfect clock. Unfortunately for the Auditors, Death catches wind of their scheming and once against enlists his granddaughter Susan to track down someone who might be able to correct their actions. Meanwhile the Monks of Time catch wind of the construction of the perfect clock as warning sign pop up like they did the first time such a clock was constructed. While Death and Susan take their own paths towards battling the Auditors, the famous Lu-Tse and his apprentice race to stop the clockmaker. And while these heroes race to save Time, the Auditors of Reality begin to learn about what it means to be human and that sudden immersion probably wasn’t the best way to do so.

Thief of Time follows a new pattern by Pratchett in which he focused more on plot and story structure, instead of jokes that string along the story. In fact while there is humor in this book it isn’t paramount to anything connected with the plot, it’s just that some funny things happen along the way towards the climax. This isn’t to say that the book isn’t good, in fact it continues Pratchett’s string of great work but the early sophomoric humor or plain repetitiveness of some jokes are thing of the past in the series. However while the events in this book clear up various timeline anomalies created earlier in the series, it also marks the ending of the Death subseries (though he continues to make appearances) and the last appearance of Susan Sto Helit which for their fans is a major disappointment as the series would continue for 15 more books.

Yet while Thief of Time does turns out to represent the last appearance for some fan favorites, it continues Pratchett’s string of great installments of the Discworld series. For anyone who is a fan of Pratchett you’ll love this book and if you’re new to the Discworld after reading this book you’ll be interested about his earlier installments. ( )
  mattries37315 | Nov 23, 2016 |
Lu Tze is awesome! Rule One! History Monks! A lowly sweeper, but with great skill! And now he has an apprentice who seems to understand time intuitively. More intuitively than any other human. Except for maybe the young clock maker in Ankh Morpork.

This book also stars Susan, granddaughter of Death. This is the first Discworld book with her that I’ve read. Probably not the best introduction, but it certainly whet my appetite for more of her story.

This book explores, in that very Pratchett way: time, history, humanity, and the end of the world. It reminded me quite a lot of Good Omens, but without the Gaiman grimness and with a Horseman who sells yogurt on the side. As always, Stephen Briggs is an excellent narrator. ( )
  jlharmon | Nov 3, 2016 |
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» Add other authors (18 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Pratchett, Terryprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Briggs, StephenNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Cazenove, ChristopherNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
De Cuir, GabrielleNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Ellison, HarlanNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Kidd, ChipCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Kirby, JoshCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Parri, DyfrigTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Rudnicki, StefanNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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According to the First Scroll of Wen the Eternally Surprised, Wen stepped out of the cave where he had received enlightenment and into the dawning light of the first day of the rest of his life.
Sometimes thinking is like talking to another person, but that person is also you.
Nine-tenths of the universe, in fact, is the paperwork.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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This is the main work for Thief of Time by Terry Pratchett. It is not the same work as Tony Hillerman's book of the same name.
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Book description
Time is a resource. Everyone knows it has to be managed.

And on the Discworld that is the job of the Monks of History, who store it and pump it from the places where it's wasted (like the underwater - how much time does a codfish need?) to places like cities, where there's never enough time.

But the construction of the world's first truly accurate clock starts a race against, well, time for Lu Tze and his apprentice Lobsang Ludd. Because it will stop time. And that will only be the start of everyone's problems.

THIEF OF TIME comes complete with a full supporting cast of heroes, villains, yetis, martial artists and Ronnie, the fifth Horseman of the Apocalypse (who left before they became famous).
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0061031321, Mass Market Paperback)

If you were helpless with laughter over Shanghai Noon, enjoy satirical British humor and terrible puns, or just need your Pratchett fix, grab this book. Unfamiliar with Terry Pratchett and his Discworld series? It's time to discover one of the funniest, most literate, and most thought-provoking authors writing today.

The Monks of History live in a Tibetan sort of area known as "enlightenment country." Their job: "to see that tomorrow happens at all." A mysterious Lady wants time-obsessed Jeremy Clockson to build a totally accurate glass clock. It will trap time and stop it, eliminating humanity's irritating unpredictability. This would make the Auditors, who observe the universe and enforce the rules governing it, very happy. It would also put Death out of a job, which the Grim Reaper isn't happy about. Fortunately, the History Monks have encountered this situation before; in fact, Lu Tze, the Sweeper, has personally dealt with it before. Even better, he has a new, gifted apprentice, Lobsang Ludd, the "thief of time." This time, they'll stop trouble before it can start! To add chaos to the mix, there's the Fifth Horseman of the Apocalypse--the one who quit before they became famous.

Although there are 25 other Discworld novels and many of the characters appeared first in previous books, you don't need to have read even one to enjoy The Thief of Time. (If you're the sort of reader who hates to miss any references, you might want to track down a copy of The Discworld Companion.) As a bonus, this book is a painless introduction to what quantum physics says about the nature of time. --Nona Vero

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:14:47 -0400)

(see all 6 descriptions)

In Discworld, time is a resource managed by the highly capable Monks of History. Everybody wants more time, which is why on Discworld only the experts can manage it. While everyone always talks about slowing down, one young horologist is about to do the unthinkable. He's going to stop. Well, stop time that is, by building the world's first truly accurate clock. Which means esteemed History Monk Lu-Tze and his apprentice Lobsang Ludd have to put on some speed to stop the timepiece before it starts. For if the perfect clock starts ticking, time, as we know it, will end. And then the trouble will really begin.… (more)

» see all 7 descriptions

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