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Carpe Jugulum: A Discworld Novel [Library Binding]

Terry Pratchett
3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)

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Book Description

May 9 2008
In these wildly eccentric adventures, Britain's best-selling living novelist mines a rich seam of comic fantasy that takes us to the Edge -- and beyond.
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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From Publishers Weekly

Carpe JugulumAseize the throatAis the motto of the family of "vampyres" who attempt a hospitable takeover of the kingdom of Lancre in Pratchett's 23rd Discworld novel. When the goodhearted king invited the Magpyrs to celebrate the birth of his daughter, he couldn't know that these modern bloodsuckers would have no intention of leaving. By controlling everyone's mind, they try to turn Lancre into a sort of farm, and no one can think straight enough to stop them. That is, until the vampyres meet up with the local witches: Granny Weatherwax, Nanny Ogg, Magrat Garlick and Agnes Nitt (who is literally of two minds about everything). The perplexing skirmishes that ensue will leave readers shaking their heads in hearty dismay even as they groan at the puns and explanatory notes that pepper the tale. Death (scythe and all) and Igor (of Frankenstein film fame) provide the best gags. The novel exudes the curious feel of old-fashioned vampire and Frankenstein legendsAfull of holy water, religious symbols, stakes through the heart, angry mobs, bad pronunciation and garlic. The vampyres, however, have risen above these clich?s even if their servant, Igor, still has a taste for dribbly candles and squeaky hinges. Pratchett lampoons everything from Christian superstition to Swiss Army knives here, proving that the fantasy satire of Discworld "still ate'nt dead."
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

From School Library Journal

YA-In the guise of good relations with the Uberwald, King Verence sent an invitation to his daughter's christening to the Count de Magpyr and his family. The Count is a modern vampyr and he has convinced his family they need not fear crosses, garlic, running water, or sunlight. Unfortunately for the land of Lancre, he's right. Luckily, Nanny Ogg, Agnes Nitt (and her figment, Perdita), Granny Weatherwax, and an Omnian priest named Mightily Oats are on hand to save the kingdom. This, the 23rd book in the series, is a marvelous send-up of old horror movies, from the shambling, pieced-together, lisping servant Igor to the torch-wielding mobs.
Susan Salpini, Purcellville Library, VA
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Start at the beginning Feb. 18 2002
Format:Mass Market Paperback
I picked this up in a European airport, thinking it was going to be a quick silly read, like Tom Sharpe. It's nothing like, but I wasn't disappointed. My only caveat: start earlier in the Discworld series - starting here made for a confusing beginning and the uncomfortable sense that I was missing stuff.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars If Witches were horses... June 24 2005
By A Customer
I honestly enjoyed this book...and considering the large number of books I read, for me to clearly remember what a book was about over a year after reading it means that there had to be something memorable in the first place.
Here, the blend of the witches, the vampires (SMART, for once...I must say, it was a pleasure to meet this breed), the Watch, all together really made for an enjoyable experience. To see threads from other novels is always half the fun of reading Discworld, for see threads from "Masquerade", without it being "Masquerade, 2" absolutely made it, in my books.
Don't get me wrong. "Carpe Jugulum" isn't "Thief of Time". But that doesn't make it shoddy by any means.^^
If you enjoy watching those old horror b-movies...well, the book reminds a touch of the feeling of laughing at the cardboard tombstones in "Plan 9 From Outer Space"...great satire.
But that's Prachett. This man just doesn't WRITE bad books.
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3.0 out of 5 stars One of the weaker Discworld books Feb. 1 2002
Format:Mass Market Paperback
The villains are a family of vampires, who move in and take over Lancre and its royal family, while Granny Weatherwax and the other witches try to stop them (and eventually succeed, of course). As my wife says, it just seems like a rehash of Lords and Ladies.
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5.0 out of 5 stars wow Jan. 18 2002
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This has got to be my favorite prachet book so far. Im so glad i finally read it!
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4.0 out of 5 stars Deja Vu Nov. 12 2001
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This is just one of umpteen reviews, so I'll skip the summary. In fact, the only reason I'm reviewing this AT ALL is that I bought the book through Amazon, so every time I write a review of something else, they remind me I still haven't reviewed this one.
But, after having it for months, I've finally started to read it. Wow, I'm glad that I did!
Let's be honest. The plot is really secondary to the characters. And that is where PTerry shines. He gives us characters with motivations and passions, likes and fears, and he lets the humor flow from that, rather than forcing a plot point to make the humor come out. PTerry's humor is never forced.
However, as many have pointed out, this plot is a re-hasing of Lords and Ladies. Without a doubt, Lords and Ladies is my favorite. So when this plot also takes place in Lancre with an outside force of supernatural beings assaulting the kingdom, it felt like I was coming back to a well-eorn fable. I knew the plot, and I could concentrate on reading about the characters.
And we learn so much about the characters this time. Nanny Ogg and Agnes get some great treatment this time around (which they lacked in previous books), and even Granny Weatherwax gets some new twists. The characters are delicious.
Why a four star rating instead of a five, then? Because PTerry wasn't as inventive this time. In Lords and Ladies, we see Elves in a different way. Cliches are broken, mangled, played with, and twisted. But the Vampires (vampyrs, as they prefer) are somewhat mundane. One of them is even named Vlad, for Pete's sake! PTerry certainly did give us a new take on some of the traits of the Vampires, but they didn't get the much-needed overhaul that the Elves got previously.
Otherwise, an entertaining, highly-readable, highly-quotable book (as Discworld books tend to be). But it's still the younger, less successful brother compared to Lords and Ladies.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Good, but not great... Aug. 12 2001
Format:Mass Market Paperback
While I agree with others that this is not at all a rewrite of Lord and Ladies, this also is one of the weaker books in the series.
The quick story is that the king has invited vampires into his kingdom - an invitation they quickly accept so they can take it all over. Of course, they have to contend with Granny Weatherwax and initially she appears to be a push-over...
The vampire portions are really well done and I enjoyed them a lot. It was easy to see their motivations and empathise with them (despite their dark nature.) The witches behavior was much more haphazard and odd - none of them appear to be strong characters (except Granny, of course) and instead appear to just stumble into everything. While it's true that is a large part of Rincewind's appeal but I guess I don't expect it everywhere in the Discworld. Oh well, it is a funny book with some of the best humor he's written - I just wish the other parts were just as solid as the comedy.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Witches and Vampires and Pictsies! Oh My! July 27 2001
Format:Mass Market Paperback
I love Terry Pratchet's Discworld novels, and I'm partial to the novels featuring the witches. This novel, however, is by far my favorite. Not only to you have Granny Weatherwax, Nanny Ogg, and Agnes Nit, you get a pack of vampires and an army of pixies -- I mean, Pictsies.
Although the Pictsies are amusing, what really makes this novel is the family of vampires who want to lead a normal life. Particularly amusing is the Count's teenage daughter, Lacci (short for Lacrimosa), who does the most un-vampiric things, like staying up until noon, wearing brightly-colored clothes, and asking her friends to call her Gertrude.
You can never go wrong with a Discworld novel, and this one in particular is amazingly funny!
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