I came late to the world of Sir TP, indeed I’ve still only dipped my toes into the very edge of his vast ocean. Before being persuaded to read my first one, I’d simply say “I don’t do fantasy” when offered a copy. To me, he was that bonkers bloke who dressed up and told wild stories about made-up worlds and made-up people. People told me that they were funny, that I’d love the wit, the gentle humour, the cleverness. But I was stuck in my world of literary fiction and I was not to be shifted. I watched “The Hogfather” on television one Christmas and was simply bewildered and bemused. I assumed I just didn’t “get it” and so did not change my mind.
The TP I knew best was the man who become a mental health activist. A man who’s Alzheimers diagnosis wasn’t allowed to dim his vitality, his vibrancy, his desire to change the world for the better. I admired him enormously, but still …
Then my sister-in-law selected a book with the specific intent to entice me in as a reader. Clever girl that she is, she suggested “Monstrous Regiment” … and I absolutely adored it. Indeed, I’ve subsequently read some of the work he wrote (or co-wrote) post diagnosis. It made me do that “if only I could write a fraction as well with my full capacities” thing. Well, as full capacities as one can have having turned 60.
Since then, the world of the fantastical – be that fantasy or science-fiction – has intruded into my previously literary-fiction-only world. It now forms a significant part of my reading. More and more of this genre appears on my read, and my to-be-read lists than I ever imagined possible, or probable. And they’re not there because I feel I ought to read more widely. Nope, I read them for the usual reason – because I hope to enjoy them and largely, I do. I really do.
Yes, there’s a cleverness that I never expected. I don’t mean the display of vast tracts of knowledge – no, I mean the use of those vast tracts to entertain (whilst educating). With this cleverness comes humour – wit in fact. Of course there is some science fiction which is heavy and serious, but much seems to come with a tongue very firmly in cheek, with an ability to laugh at oneself. And oh, isn’t that such fun to read?
There’s still vast swathes of TP that I’ve not ventured into, but now the only reason I hold back is there’s just so many of them. At my age and with my TBR pile/list teetering dangerously, that many books could be seriously life threatening.
So I’ve decided to ask for recommendations. A recommendation based upon what you know of me. A recommendation to entice me. Or just your most favourite ever.
© Debra Carey 2017