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Men At Arms [Paperback]

Terry Pratchett
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (41 customer reviews)
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Book Description

March 1 1995 Discworld (Book 15)
"Be a MAN in the City Watch!  The City Watch needs MEN!"

But what it's gotincludes Corporal Carrot (technically a dwarf), Lance-constable Detritus (a troll), Lance-constable Angua (a woman...most of the time) and Corporal Nobbs (disqualified from the human race for shoving).

And they need all the help they can get.  Because they've only got twenty-four hours to clean up the town and this is ANKH-MORPORT we're talking about...

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From Publishers Weekly

In his latest effort, Pratchett skewers the hard-boiled detective novel as effectively as he's satired fantasy fiction all these years. Set on Discworld, there are a few more gargoyles and exploding dragons than Sam Spade ever had to deal with. But there's a trail of corpses and a hero named Carrot determined to track down the killer. His partners-the token dwarf, troll and werewolf on the police force-must overcome discrimination as well as the occasional rampaging orangutan. Although Men at Arms isn't as consistently funny as his earlier novels, the dialogue is hilarious, and Pratchett's take on affirmative action is a whole lot of fun. There's not a lot of rational narrative cause-and-effect here, but it doesn't really matter. As usual, Pratchett provides enough bad-tempered clowns, bloodthirsty trolls and dogs with low self-esteem to keep readers entertained.
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

From Booklist

The umpteenth Discworld novel introduces Captain Vines, who is about to leave the City Watch of Ankh-Morpork. The ensuing efforts to replace him are quite as zany, as devoid of conventional plot, as rich in displays of offbeat imagination, and as satirical (particularly of affirmative action and the hard-boiled detective thriller) as we have come to expect from Pratchett. Although not an outstanding Discworld novel and absolutely not the place to start with Pratchett's best-known creation, Men at Arms upholds Pratchett's reputation as a master of humorous fantasy and is good, highly recommendable fun for those who have already acquired a taste for Discworld. Roland Green --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

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5.0 out of 5 stars perfect June 26 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
A perfect mix of hard boiled pulp detective and the wry humour and clever imagination that makes discworld so wonderful.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Hilarious July 23 2013
By Dan
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Great book, just as good as Guards Guards! and enough to convince me to read the rest of the Discworld series, assuming I live that long :)

For anyone that doesn't know this is the second book in the Night's Watch series, Guards! Guards! is the first and Feet Of Clay is the third.
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4.0 out of 5 stars The Watch at it again July 19 2013
By Lorina Stephens TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Paperback
In this Discworld instalment we return to The Watch, Captain Vimes, Corporal Carrot, and a host of other familiar and new characters.

As always Pratchett demonstrates his ease as a story-teller, married closely to wit, madcap humour and endearing moments. While not as many outright guffaws in this yarn about gun (or gonne) control, multiculturalism and destiny, certainly there is an abundance of escapism, heroism and whodunnits.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Gotta love that Corporal Carrot Feb. 12 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I love Pratchett. I love the all the stories of the Watch and along with NIght Watch this is my favourite about them all. Before Cuddy dies and with the twist on Carrot being King.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Personal isn't the same as important July 14 2006
By Daniel Jolley TOP 50 REVIEWER
Format:Paperback
Men at Arms reunites us with the stalwart defenders of our beloved Ankh-Morpork: the Night Watch. Along the way we also meet up with some of the Discworld's most distinctive secondary characters (including Foul Ole Ron and Big Fido), get a glimpse of affirmative action Ankh-Morpork-style, discover the identity of the rightful king (if Ankh-Morpork still had a king, which it doesn't, which isn't the fault of the shady characters in this book trying to replace the Patrician with the aforementioned heir to the throne, who doesn't want the job anyway), converse once more with Gaspode the talking dog, and - if that's not enough - make ready for the wedding of the year between Captain Samuel Vimes of the Night Watch and Lady Sybil Ramkin, proprietor of the Sunshine Sanctuary for Sick Dragons and the richest woman in Ankh-Morpork. Captain Vimes is in fact retiring from the Watch, but his retirement involves much more than the traditional gift watch presentation from his men. A washed-up aristocrat named Edward D'eath takes it upon himself to restore the long-lost monarchy, a circumstance that can only come about over the Patrician's dead body. Even clowns aren't safe from this deadly conspiracy.

The trouble begins with an explosion and robbery at the Guild of Assassins. Someone has stolen nothing less than the only "gonne" on Discworld, and a series of murders shock the town. OK, nothing's really going to shock the people of Ankh-Morpork, but the fact that people keep turning up full of holes where guts should be definitely stirs up the Watchmen. The Patrician is also less than happy about things, so he makes sure the Watch gets to the bottom of things by forbidding Captain Vimes to investigate.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Format:Paperback
"Men at Arms" is the fifteenth novel in Terry Pratchett's hugely popular Discworld series and the second to focus on Sam Vimes and Ankh-Morpork's City Guard. Although its reputation may have raised very slightly, having rescused the City from a large and angry dragon, it's still not the fine and noble profession it once was.

Sam is the Captain of the Night Watch, though he is on the verge of retiring and will soon marry Lady Ramkin, the noted dragon-fancier. It isn't entirely clear, however, whether or not he's entirely happy about either the retirement or his impending life of marital bliss. It's fair to say he's not your typical hero : he hates the Undead (some of my best friends are werewolves), Assassins (a perfectly respectable profession) and - in keeping with an old family tradition - Kings (not an ideal musketeer then). Sam's also trying to quit drinking and has taken up smoking cigars to soften the blow.

The Night Watch has had a couple of new recruits since "Guards! Guards!" - largely at the insistence if the Patrician, the city's ruler. The recruits - Lance-Constables Cuddy (a dwarf), Detritus (a troll) and Angua (a woman, for most of the month) - have been selected to reflect Ankh-Morpork's `ethnic makeup'. Although Sergeant Colon and Corporal Nobbs are Sam's most experienced officers, the most capable is Carrot. Although born human, Carrot was raised as a dwarf and is an incredibly innocent character - he still hasn't figured out what seamstresses do for a living. He has, however, figured out how Ankh-Morpork works and has stopped trying to arrest the President of the Thieves Guild. The trouble begins when Edward d'Eath suspects that Carrot may be the rightful king of Ankh-Morpork.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Carrot comes into his own! Feb. 25 2003
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
This book is one my favorite and, I believe, one of the best of Pratchett's Discworld Series. I can say it in one word: Carrot! He is one of my favorite heroes on the Discworld (only Rincewind and Nanny Ogg compare with Death a close third). As usual, Carrot comes through with flying colors. There are just so many interesting things in this book: the plot about the "gonne," Leonard de Quirm (and the way he acts with the Patrician), Cuddy the dwarf and Detritus the troll, the silly guildsand their ridiculous presidents, Carrot and Angua, I could just go on.
Especially good was the troll-dwarf issue, the way they had to work together to interview the guilds without making complete fools of themselves and just basically get along. Also, it is funny how intelligent trolls get in low temperatures.
The plot alos makes for a nice mystery story. Pratchett really worked on this one. We start out with a 4-man watch and end up with one over 60 people! The Watch really grows up and will add many laughs to future stories. One of the best: a must read.
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