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Soul Music Paperback – Oct 31 2005


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Corgi (Oct. 31 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0552153192
  • ISBN-13: 978-0552153195
  • Product Dimensions: 12.7 x 2.2 x 19.7 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 281 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (55 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #879,125 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

From Amazon

Soul Music is the 16th book in the bestselling Discworld series, with close ties to the fourth book, Mort. Susan Sto Helit is rather bored at her boarding school in the city of Ankh-Morpork, which is just as well, since it seems that her family business--she is the granddaughter of Death--suddenly needs a new caretaker. --Blaise Selby --This text refers to the Mass Market Paperback edition.

From Publishers Weekly

Nepotism is given an unusual spin in Pratchett's 14th Discworld novel, as Death's granddaughter picks up the scythe when the Grim Reaper takes a vacation. Trolls, dwarves, magicians and rock music?music played with rocks?figure in this amusing but overlong romp, which begins with the formation of a band by aspiring musician Imp y Celen (aka Buddy). Arriving in the city of Ankh-Morpork, Buddy finds a magical guitar which enables the group?a rock-playing troll, an ax-wielding dwarf and an Orangutan pianist?to drive crowds wild. But the instrument causes conflict between the motley crew and Susan, Death's granddaughter, who is just adjusting to her new post. Many of the ensuing comic situations involve Death trying to get drunk, though Pratchett's liberal application of jokes scores as many misses as hits. Extraneous plot information slows the pace as the narrative rattles to a colossal, albeit uninspired, conclusion. Science Fiction Book Club main selection.
Copyright 1995 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

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Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Ella on Aug. 31 2001
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Death always makes me feel a bit melancholy.
laugh all you want, but when I read about how Susan
laughed at the swing he tried to make for her it brought tears to my eyes...
I absolutely love Pratchetts work. I also love music
so I was ready to love this book.
but, what can I say? it was kinda boring- not one
of his best. there wasn't enough plot for 380 pages.
and the ending was a bit hazy. I'm not even sure
what happened there.
but still, 3 stars on the Pratchett scale is about
5 stars on any other scale.
better buy Small Gods or Carpe Jugulum instead, and save that one for later!
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
I always have a difficult time getting into the groove with Pratchett novels. Given the serious nature of most of the books I ever read, it takes me at least fifty pages to begin to come to terms with all the slapstick parody. Usually after that, though, I find myself in heaven, and "Soul Music," for the most part, upheld that illusion without a hitch.
I used to be into rock music a number of years ago, but I grew out of it as I began to take notice of just how pointless all the angst associated with the scene really was; the fact that all the bands sounded the same, I suppose, must have also played a part in my disenchantment. Whatever the case, this installment in the Discworld series struck a chord with me as it began to make note of all the conventions that go along hand in hand with the music; spike-studded leather clothing, you could say, goes along pretty well with the entire scene--but outside of that, you really can't justify its usage with any other point.
For a while, it's great to see Pratchett introduce element after element on the ground that "it just *fits*"--at least, until the end of the novel approaches, and you realize that what has been parodied is really nothing more than the superficial elements of it all.
But it's all fine and dandy, because when things begin to grow stale, our attention is turned towards Death's granddaughter's approach to her newly-inherited vocation, and the more intimate details of Death's home. I don't know if any details on the latter may have been dispersed in previous installments of the series (as I've only read a handful), but what's here is a hoot--it's a neat little way to make Death a more palatable, charismatic character.
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By boston403 on Dec 28 2001
Format: Mass Market Paperback
In this Discworld installment, PTerry definitely did a great job on the characters, of which there is no shortage. One of my favorites is Cut-Me-Own-Throat Dibbler, who is a business enterpreneur. Also, Corporal Nobbs and Sergeant Colon of the city watch shared some pretty funny exchanges. Another of my favorites is the Librarian, an orangutan (don't ever call him a monkey), who runs the University library. This book was also the first time I encountered Mustrum Ridcully. Every character, from the Band With Rocks In roadie Asphalt to Qouth the raven, is done in a way that individualizes them greatly. Next, I'd like to talk about the plot. There are several subplots: Death tries various ways to forget his past, Susan takes on Death's role, Ridcully and the University wizards get crazed for Music With Rocks In, and Imp Y Celyn, a Llamedese bard, gets his life takenover by a magic guitar. PTerry weaves these plots together to form a gigantic plot, which heralds a long, exciting, 300-page book
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
Death is easily one of my favorite characters in the Discworld series, and this book is him at his prime. Death is continually evolving into a more complex and humane character, while still maintaining a core 'deathness' about him. His residence is described in here using that great Pratchett mixture of blatently obvious statements and metaphors only he could get away with.
This book is also about music out of it's place. Rock and roll passes through Discworld, and the results are great (great meaning comedically bad). Take a very detailed and complete fantasy world, add the rebellion of rock and roll, and it seems like it writes itself. But the great part about this, and all Terry Pratchett books, is that the joke only begins with the setup, the entire book just keeps getting funnier and funnier. (Compare this to The Onion, where the entire joke is in the headline, and the story is usually just fluff.)
Finally, like all Pratchett books, through all of the ridiculous situations and absurd logic, there is a decent amount of drama at the end.
If you already know and like Terry Pratchett, here's one of his best works on Death. If you don't know him yet, you could easily start with this book. This was the second Pratchett book I ever read, and I haven't stopped since.
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No one agrees on which is the best Terry Pratchett novel, but a lot of his fans, myself included, would name this as a candidate. In this novel, he takes his manic punning, wordplay and double- and triple-entendre to the highest level.
Soul Music has three narrative threads: Death takes a holiday (which Pratchett fans will remember from _Mort_), Mort's orphan daughter, Susan Sto Helit, and her attempts to cope with the family legacy, and the discovery of rock and roll on the disc. The three stories intertwine and the result, for me, ranged from snickers to guffaws.
The big news is that rock and roll comes to the disk, through the agency of a pawnshop guitar and a skilled harpist, whose name translates as "Bud of Holly" and who looks kind of Elvis[h]. With a dwarvish horn player named Glod and a trollish drummer named Cliff, the band Music with Rocks In takes the Discworld by storm. The Librarian, the monk... orangutan who runs the Wizard's library, sits in on keyboards, and exceeds even the excesses of Jerry Lee Lewis. You cannot imagine a rock music issue that Pterry doesn't reach. Women fans pitch articles of clothing; espresso shops appear; rock promoters - C.M.O.T. Dibbler, of course - arrive; even the sedate wizards wear leather, do their best James Dean and show they, too, are "Born to Rune."
Parts of the book are a pastiche of "Blues Brothers" ("We're on a mission from Glod"), "Spinal Tap," and "Woodstock." Other parts are simply Pratchett's own mad invention. And this book also features Pterry's best pun - "some felonious monk;" possibly the best pun in literature since Niven's and Gerrold's _The Flying Sorcerors_. You can spend a lot of time just working out the puns.
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