book reviews by Althea

The Carpet People – Terry Pratchett ***

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I received a comment saying “very generous!” regarding my three stars.

OK, I have to admit that’s true. Honestly, this is more like a 2.5 – and that mostly because certain things about this book really appealed to me. I’m sure that many kids have, in play, fantasized that their living room carpet was actually a forest, full of who-knows-what adventures and goings-on. Certainly I did, and this book brought me back to that memory in a way that I probably would have forgotten forever if not for reading this.

I also enjoyed its similarity in feel to ‘The Hobbit.’

However, this does in many ways feel like a first effort. It was initially written when Pratchett was a teenager, and while it’s a good idea, both the plot and the execution leave something to be desired. Certainly there are some funny scenes – I really did love the philosopher/shaman Pismire – and some strikingly imaginative bits. But overall, it doesn’t cohere as well as it might’ve.

The ‘author’s note’ lets us know that Pratchett edited it before re-release. I rather wish he hadn’t – I would’ve been more interested to see the book in its original form, as a historical record of Pratchett’s early writing – because edited or no, it’s not as good as his later work.

I received this book through Goodreads’ First Reads giveaway. THANK YOU!


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