Feet of Clay Hardcover – 1996
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Top Customer Reviews
Sam is the now the Commander of the City Guard, and - having married Lady Ramkin - a member of the nobility. It's fair to say he's not your typical hero : he doesn't like the Undead (particularly vampires), Assassins (they keep trying to kill him) and - in keeping with an old family tradition - Kings (not an ideal musketeer then). Sam has quit drinking - though it's still something of a struggle - and smokes the occasional cigar to ease the blow.
Although numbers among the ranks are rising, Sam tends to rely on those he knows best. His most capable officer is Captain Carrot - who was born human, although raised as a dwarf. Carrot is an incredibly innocent and very honest character and is widely believed to be Ankh-Morpork's rightful King. (Sam has - to date - refrained from beheading him). Carrot's girlfriend, Angua, is also a member of the City Guard though - being a werewolf - she isn't quite so popular. Sergeant Detritus, a troll who deals roughly with troll drug-dealers, seems a natural - not to mention likeable - cop, though Sergeant Colon and Corporal Nobbs (a confirmed slacker and probably human) are the most experienced officers. The one newcomer is Cheery Littlebottom, an ex-alchimist dwarf who becomes quite useful in the City Guard's newly established forensics department. (Cheery left the Guild of Alchemists after, accidentally, blowing up the Guild Council. Alchemy is an unusual profession for a dwarf, though Cheery - as it turns out - isn't your usual dwarf).Read more ›
First a priest is murdered, and found with a slip of paper in his mouth. Then a curator. And Vimes has no idea how this is happening, or why anyone would kill a couple of harmless old men. To make things worse, he learns that the extremely un-royal Corporal Nobby Nobbs may be the rightful king of Ankh-Morpork (if that doesn't warp your view of reality, nothing will), and that the Patrician is being slowly poisoned -- but no one knows just how the poison is being administered.
The answer to the mysteries may lie in the golems: Not-living-but-not-dead creatures made out of clay, who don't speak and always follow orders. Theoretically they can't kill . But they come under suspicion when, inexplicably, they start destroying themselves as the evidence starts to point toward a golem murderer. However, Vimes soon learns that the conspiracy is far more extensive -- and sinister -- than the golems...
"Feet of Clay" is not merely a murder mystery (although it has one of the coolest ways of murdering a person that I've ever heard of). Pratchett also offers some commentary on society, on what makes a person a person. His handling of the golems is remarkably thought-provoking. And their connection to the attempted murder is also very hard to unravel -- you won't guess who or how or why.
This is, in some ways, more serious at times than his other books; one scene has Vimes exploding over the death of a little child and a cleaning lady.Read more ›
Okay, the great mystery is who killed two old men, and where is this mysterious clay found at the scene of the crime coming from. Vimes and the watch struggle to solve this, and suddenly, Nobby Nobbses royalty is brought to attention, Cherry Littlebottom joins the watch, and the Angua Carrot relationship is heightened a few more steps. In the midst of all this, Lord Vetinari (a FANTASTIC character) is being poisoned. All these come together in one of the most satisfying climaxes I've witnessed in a Pratchett Book yet.
There, that's out of the way.
The Guard are among the best characters Pratchett has introduced, standing next only to... Death. And even though you don't get to see the Grim Reaper, you'll have to settle for the Grim Squeaker (the death of rats). Anyways, Pratchett, as always, delights the reader with the two most vivid main characters. I'd be speaking of Sir Samuel Vimes, and Nobby Nobbs. Vimes has so much of a Dirty Harry-esque feel to him, and he... ahem... prods buttock so thoroughly that you have to cheer him on. The cigar smoking, teetotaling commander is best portrayed in the opening pages in which a VERY foolish assassin tries to end Vimes's life. Bad move.
Onto Nobbs. Nobbs is such a fantastic character, Pratchett gives him great scenes, the best in my mind being the scene in which a few Puppetmasters are trying to get Nobby to assume his royal position. Through most of this, he is saying, "Vimes would go spare! I can't do that! He'd go spare!"
Okay, here is what I disliked about the book.
Angua is a very weak POV, personally.Read more ›
Most recent customer reviews
It's a Terry Pratchett book. That's all you need to know :)Published 14 days ago by Amazon Customer
Funny, smart, witty, and so much more. By the time you got to this book you are expecting the consistent high level you have been experiencing. You wont be disappointed.Published 15 months ago by C-Dub
What one might expect from Terry Pratchett: whacky humour, intimately realized world, twists, turns and nefarious deeds. In short, another installment of escapism at its best. Read morePublished 21 months ago by Lorina Stephens
Terry Pratchet is always a good read, I love the guard series and happily recommend them to everyone to read.Published on June 20 2014 by mercphoto
For those unfamiliar with Terry Pratchett's canon of disc world novels, it is a place of wonder in which humans, dwarves, vampires, troops and now gollems, live in harmony. Read morePublished on Jan. 5 2014 by Donald N. Philip
Thoroughly enjoyable, laugh-out-loud funny. One of Pratchett's best novels. The CD audio version read by Nigel Planer is wonderful! Read morePublished on Oct. 1 2003 by Lost Gecko
I love the discworld books. I also love a good mystery. Here I received both and Terry Pratchett dumps Vimes, Carrot and the rest of the watch into a good old fashion who dunit. Read morePublished on April 3 2002 by Amazon Customer
I just finished the third book in the City Watch series, Feet of Clay. It is another home run for Pratchett. Read morePublished on Jan. 7 2002 by David Roy