Thief of Time by Terry Pratchett
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
In my experience, there are two types of Pratchett novels: those that start with a tight focus on a single character / plotline and explode outwards, and those that start with several characters / plotlines and converge inwards. To me, the former are far superior, the latter never quite coming together. I never feel like the plot totally makes sense, the characters keep you at arm's length ... and it never quite feels as if they've earned the resolution.
Unfortunately, Thief of Time is one of the latter. The narrative is clever and some of the Discworld's best characters make their appearances, but it's hard to engage with the story. There are some intriguing extensions from earlier books, but I'm not sure whether they would be quite as absorbing for someone who wasn't familiar with those elements.
The exploration of humanity, the horsemen of the Apocalypse, the long-suffering Igor - and the mere presence of Susan Sto Helit - are worth reading the book on their own. Ultimately, however, I felt I was reading the book less for the throughline as for the "good bits." The sideshow was great. I was lukewarm on the main event.
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