Pratchett has managed to mix in Little Red Riding Hood, Sleeping Beauty, Cinderella, The Wizard of Oz and even The Lord of the Rings (complete with a sleazy Gollum). Even when I knew a joke was coming, Pratchett did so well with it that I smiled and even laughed anyway.
I couldn't find a single flaw. The plot, the characters, the jokes ... all perfect.
You won't be disappointed. This is my favourite Discworld novel by far.
WITCHES ABROAD lampoons just about every tourism cliche, and I suppose I got the biggest laughs from the parodies of riverboat gamblers on the Vieux (Ol' Man) River and Mardi Gras ("Fat Lunchtime" according to Nanny), plus a voodoo witch with a Russian name and a baba yaga house, which made her even funnier. Every fairy tale you can imagine is parodied and twisted around, even modern ones like THE WIZARD OF OZ. But the best lampoon is the hysterical two page Hemingway send-up in the bull chase sequence, turning that author's infamous cojones and humorlessness into something side-splitting.
In spite of her inner urgings, which are brought out most forcefully in this novel, Granny Weatherwax is her usual sour but fundamentally decent self, making us prefer her direct tactlessness to her sister's slick manipulation. "Tact" is something Granny ignores. She perpetrates every paranoid suspicion generated by "ugly American" tourists and their British counterparts, and I've met both kinds while traveling in Europe. Nanny Ogg is almost too eager to communicate, and too certain of her "forn" vocabulary. Her malapropisms of languages and cuisine (crap suzette, anyone?) had me collapsing with laughter. Magrat, who for the most part bids farewell to the subseries after the next book, LORDS & LADIES, may be a wet hen but begins to show some mettle.Read more ›