Books

Book Review: Jingo by Terry Pratchett

It’s just like Terry Pratchett to take a poke at all the serious, and twisted stuff we humans come up with and could live without if weren’t so bloody stubborn, making fun of them in that intellectual way. This time it’s war he is more surveying. Or could I say, Vimes has his opinion about, and you could say, he doesn’t see the point of it all. Not because of some suddenly risen land, that could go back to the bottom of the sea, thank you, nor for the reason why Rust or the Klatchians want it and least of all why the Ankh-Morporkians sees it as important.

I’m with there nodding along with Vimes, loving what Carrot does, bringing a solution which in a way spirits the war and you know, gets all the bend up aggression out of the way so we can speak to each other like humans. For me, Carrot is in his best in Jingo. He has corporate some Vimes’ earlier spirit and gets to be Vimes to Vimes’ distaste who wants to go back being the man of the street or a thief chaser as some would call him. Jingo is one of my favorite books as it speaks about the stupidity of war both from people and rulers’ perspective. That there seem to be always a good reason to hate and kill each other, even how pointless it might be. That we too willingly go with stereotypes and tribal instincts and beat each other into submission before we ask why or does this make sense or whose war are we fighting really, and did I just lose my leg for no good reason at all? Yet, war is something that makes a man (or a woman) a man, that shows what life is all about, and shapes the person both in a good and bad way. Wilkins returns show this to us. But the question remains, so many didn’t return, why?

I love Jingo, but it has its weaknesses. The story gets messy in the middle, and I can see Pratchett fumble to find his plotline and point, to get his characters to go from one place to another for a reason, and there are a couple of misses especially with Angua and the boat chase. It felt awkward. But as always, there is this magic in Pratchett writing which makes you forgive those minor cracks and read on as someone is doing something hilarious, interesting, and serious at the same time like Nobby Nobbs or should I say Beti.

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