A Novel of Discworld

mass market paperback, 416 pages

Published Jan. 28, 2014 by Harper.

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5 stars (1 review)

Who would want to harm Discworld's most beloved icon? Very few things are held sacred in this twisted, corrupt, heartless -- and oddly familiar -- universe, but the Hogfather is one of them. Yet here it is, Hogswatchnight, that most joyous and acquisitive of times, and the jolly old, red-suited gift-giver has vanished without a trace. And there's something shady going on involving an uncommonly psychotic member of the Assassins' Guild and certain representatives of Ankh-Morpork's rather extensive criminal element. Suddenly Discworld's entire myth system is unraveling at an alarming rate. Drastic measures must be taken, which is why Death himself is taking up the reins of the fat man's vacated sleigh . . . which, in turn, has Death's level-headed granddaughter, Susan, racing to unravel the nasty, humbuggian mess before the holiday season goes straight to hell and takes everyone along with it.

32 editions

Holiday reading

5 stars

A few years back, I added this to my list of Christmas reads - books I reread (or at least think about rereading) every year during the holidays, books that get me in the mood, because of content (this one, obviously) or past associations (Lord of the Rings) or because somehow they seem to me to suit the season, in the same way that fires, green branches inside, lights, rich food and so on do, that contribute to the hygge.

Hogfather is set in Discworld, where most of Terry Pratchett's books are set. Like most of his books, it riffs off some aspect of our world - in this case Christmas - in a satirical but loving and insightful way. In this book, the Hogfather - a Santa Claus/Spirit of the Solstice figure - is incapacitated by some creatures who are opposed to human creativity. And Death has to step …