Title: Soul Music
Author: Terry Pratchett
Page Count/Review Word Count: 384
Soul Music is about Death, but not about death – it’s about the anthropomorphic personification, the tall guy with the scythe, and not the thing that happens where people stop moving. And it’s also about rock music, or at least, it’s the Discworld’s equivalent – music with rocks in. And everyone knows that Death would be a killer bassist, right? He’s got long fingers!
I’m not going to dig into the story line, because it’s kind of complex and I think it’s better for you to discover it by actually reading the book. However, I can tell you that if you’re a lover of music then you’re going to love this, because there are all sorts of little references that are lying in wait for you to pick up on them. In fact, I personally found it to be one of the more relatable Pratchett books, even if I wouldn’t say it was my favourite.
The main problem with trying to pick out a Discworld book is that there’s just so much choice, because there are better books than Soul Music – really, though, it’s still very much worth reading, especially if you’re a musician or if Death is your favourite character. Pratchett’s in top form throughout the novel, and it was actually written and released during what I consider to be his strongest period – another good reason to read it!
The characterisation is excellent here as well, and so are the parallels with our own world – two of the musicians start calling themselves ‘Buddy‘ and ‘Cliff‘, for example. If you don’t recognise those references, then you’re probably not going to enjoy the book as much as you would if you love sixties rock ‘n’ roll, like I do.
So overall, I would definitely recommend Soul Music, and whilst you might also want to think about checking out some of the City Watch novels and some of Pratchett’s later work, it can’t hurt to start here, either. By now, you should have enough of an idea to make your mind up – if you do decide to read it, come back and let me know what you thought. Might re-read it myself, as it goes – we’ll have to see!