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on March 22, 2002
Even though this might not be one of Pratchett's best books- it is still great to read. It was already mentioned that this is another story "borrowed" from Shakespeare, but I must say that this wasn't the main reason why I enjoyed this book.
Of course, the midsummer night dream turned into a story about Nanny Ogg, Granny Weatherwax and "One happens to be queen soon" Magrat fighting evil elves who want to take over the ramtop- kingdom Lancre is somewhat funny. No doubt Terry could have made a lot more out of this material, but he makes up for it.
Nanny Ogg meets Casanunda again and the "romance" between the witch and the self- announced second best lover of the discworld will have you roar with laughter (unbelievable what Nanny can turn a candlelight dinner into..). Another highlight is surely Archchancellor Ridcully who has been invited to the royal wedding (remember Witches Abroad- Magrat and Verence finally made it to the point, and Verence is already ordering "special" books from Ankh Morpork : "Martial Arts? I'm sure I ordered.. uh, never mind.."). Returning to the ramtops Mustrum Ridcully finds his teenage-love (Granny Weatherwax!!) but he doesn't have a lot of time for romantic memories as the elves keep Granny busy.
After all, Lords and Ladies could have been more than it is, but it still will make you laugh.
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on June 19, 2000
Margrat Garlick is about to have her dream wedding. She is marrying the King. The stuff fairy tales are made of. A faerie tale is what she gets. Every bride's nightmare. The faerie host have decided they would like to crash the festivities and the Queen wants the King for her husband. At least until she's tired of him. It's up to Granny Weatherwax, Nanny Ogg, the librarian and a host of others to stop them.
I enjoyed this one, but even Pratchett mentions you need some background on this one. I strongly suggest you read at least Wyrd Sisters and Witches Abroad prior to this. It'll give you some idea of what's going on. Pratchett plays with most of the British elven legends as well as few of the Pagan Pantheon to bring this one off. (Actually, he sticks pretty close to the old legends and humorously traces their evolution into modern conception). I liked this novel not only for the usual humor, but also for the suspense aspect of it. I recommend this one if you like the fairy tales
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on May 28, 1998
Hmmm..., vicious, nasty, manipulative, self-centered... Sounds like most humans I've met. Maybe cows and insects think _we're_ evil. Think about it before stuffing a burger into your mouth or squashing a bug.
I appreciate satire, even if it tweaks my own "sacred cows." I'm not afraid to reexamine my beliefs--it either strengthens them or enables me to discard those I've outgrown. However, as someone whose ancestors were persecuted and executed because of a convenient stereotype promulgated by ignorant and frightened mental/moral defectives, I cannot endorse the concept of genocide as entertainment.
One of the reasons I've enjoyed and recommended Mr. Pratchett's work is that he (usually) questions the standard fantasy truism that certain species are evil because they are that species. (Oh, god, orcs (or trolls or...)! Kill them!) Unfortunately, in order to justify his own views (anyone else remember his comments in a STARLOG interview about not hearing the "bloody elves singing" in his stories?) he conveniently and lazily resorts to the kind of stereotype he's previously debunked.
Returning to my original comments, I ask that everyone who has agreed with Mr. Pratchett's description of elves to consider that someone else may think that describes YOU. And when you try to justify the behavior that prompted such an opinion, think if the other person will still believe you are anything other than manipulative and self-serving. THEN be thankful that we really haven't seen evidence of intelligent life from other planets, because it it existed and was aware of the human species, I doubt it would think any more highly of us than this book regards elves.
In short: well-written, but disappointing.
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on June 4, 2000
Terry Pratchett's books seem to function like a satyr play at the end of a day of tragedies - they poke not too subtle fun at the themes and concerns which lie deep in the psyche.
This may seem a bold claim, but there has to be some reason for popularity of the discworld books.
In this one, "Lords and Ladies", Shakespeare's fairies from 'A Midsummer Night's Dream' are combined with Tolkein's elves to create a sort of negative beautiful people - not too unlike some of the interpretations given to the darker side of the Shakespeare original.
This has a logic behind it which, when you throw in the stable discworld characters, give it a harsh flavouring of socialism (or perhaps peasantism?) and let loose Mr Pratchett's wicked play on words, produces an energetic romp guaranteed to tickle not only the intellect but also the funny bone.
You can enjoy the book without knowing the Shakespeare, but you'd miss a lot if you did.
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on August 30, 2005
Pratchett's Discworld continues in fine style. It combines his signature combination of incredible characters, groanable puns, wild adventure and maybe, just maybe a little serious reflection. I'm not sure that Pratchett would admit to that last, though.
And no, no one is quite what you expected. There's the king, elevated from his former role as jester (or was he?). The queen is shy, uncertain, and naive (or is she?). The witches' contest of power ends when one looks away (or does it?). The elves are wondrous and glamorous - or are they?
The serious side flirts with the many-worlds ideas from physics, serious science sure to warm the soul of any comedic writer. It also raises some symbols of a long-gone warrior queen, and leaves with some pointed observations on symbols being what you let them. Mostly, though, it's just more of Pratchett's laugh-out-loud history of a world that's even more ridiculous than our own - or is it?
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on September 28, 2001
This Pratchett book picks up on something that Shakespeare missed; if elves are GOOD, why were they so careless with the humans in Midsummer Night's Dream? Pratchett reveals why; "elves are BAD". They're chilling enemies but they've met their match in Weatherwax's coven!
This is not only epic and creepy, but has a lot of character development. We see Weatherwax starting to become afraid of death... only to make a final and tragic stand against the elves.
" You try to frighten me with becoming OLD? "
It's a great book, full of action, drama, humour and orang-utans. And with that, I'll leave with the Nanny Ogg to "Oberon" quote:
" Now, I have a soft spot for you. But I have kiddies, you see, and they don't leave milk out for elves or hide under the stairs because of thunder or run home because they're scared of the night, and before we return to those dark days I'LL SEE YOU NAILED. "
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on August 17, 1999
Few authors have offered quite as much as Pratchett--he takes on complex concepts, wraps them up in humour, and delivers them via characters like Granny Weatherwax. (And Nanny Ogg--the Hedgehog's Song is one of those underrated literary classics of all time.) Wonderful meeting them again in Lords and Ladies--do yourself a favour, pick this one up even though it's considerably darker, and angrier, than Pratchett's usual stuff. I read Lords and Ladies around the same time I browsed through a short story by David Brin. Brin's story speculated, like Pratchett, that fairies were actually nasty, inhuman creatures--pushing the thesis to its logical conclusion, he postulated that fairies were actually the original aliens. Brin's almost certainly the more rigorous thinker; but Pratchett has a helluva lot more fun.
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on November 24, 1999
Compared with any book from any other author, this book is excellent.
Compared with Pratchetts other books, it's quite mediocre.
It's funny, and has some excellent moments, but in the middle it gets quite confusing. Furthermore, there are nearly no serious themes treated in this book, which is a shame because discussing serious themes is what Pratchett masters best. The only thing that makes me rate this book with 4 stars is the excellent character of Casanunda, the best of the book. Without him, I would have rated it 3, because it's worse than most other Discworld novels, but still better than most other things written by most other authors.
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Lords and Ladies, by Terry Pratchett, is an outright giggle-fest. Can't remember the last time I laughed so much while reading -- certainly not a book conducive to inducing somnolence.

We returns to the witches of Discworld, Nanny Ogg, Granny Weatherwax and Magrat who is about to become Queen Magrat and finds herself in an identity crisis and bored to distraction. Boredom on Discworld, however, is never lasting ailment as proven by an attempting invasion by the Sidhe.

Full of screamingly funny romance, Pratchett's deft ability as a story-teller, with a touch of social consciousness thrown in. A great summer, or anytime, read.
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on August 28, 1997
Story begins almost immediately after Witches Abroad, which I believe is one of the best works in fantasy. This book is not quite up to the level of Witches Abroad although it has some excellant insights, especially about words which change their meaning over time such as "terrific".

If you like the Disc World series you have to read this book just to keep up with the ever popular witches of Lancre. If you haven't read any disc-world books I would start with Wyrd Sisters, then Witches Abroad and then Lords and Ladies. They are not really a trilogy but that is the best order in which to read them
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