Sourcery (Discworld Series #5)

Sourcery (Discworld Series #5)

4.3 60
by Terry Pratchett, Victor Gollancz
     
 

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When last seen, the singularly inept wizard Rincewind had fallen off the edge of the world. Now magically, he's turned up again, and this time he's brought the Luggage.

But that's not all....

Once upon a time, there was an eighth son of an eighth son who was, of course, a wizard. As if that wasn't complicated enough, said wizard then had seven sons. And then

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Overview

When last seen, the singularly inept wizard Rincewind had fallen off the edge of the world. Now magically, he's turned up again, and this time he's brought the Luggage.

But that's not all....

Once upon a time, there was an eighth son of an eighth son who was, of course, a wizard. As if that wasn't complicated enough, said wizard then had seven sons. And then he had an eighth son — a wizard squared (that's all the math, really). Who of course, was a source of magic — a sorcerer.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
This fifth Discworld tale ( Mort ), about a barely averted apocalypse there, reasserts Pratchett's adroitness as a storyteller. Inventive, satirical of the contemporary scene, Pratchett does not merely play with words, he juggles shrewd observations with aplomb. His creations are gently allegorical: for instance, the Unseen University Library is the repository of magic, its librarian an orangutan and its archchancellorship reserved for the most powerful magician, a ``sourcerer'' named Coin. But the author never takes himself or his message too seriously, and maintains a feather-light touch throughout. Even Death, an important minor character here, receives a distinctive voice. (Dec.)
From the Publisher
 • "Like Jonathan Swift, Pratchett uses his other world to hold up a distorting mirror to our own, and like Swift he is a satirist of enormous talent... incredibly funny... compulsively readable." —The Times

 • "His spectacular inventiveness makes the Discworld series one of the perennial joys of modern fiction." —Mail on Sunday

 • "May well be considered his masterpiece... Humour such as his is an endangered species." —The Times

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780061020674
Publisher:
HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
02/28/2001
Series:
Discworld Series, #5
Edition description:
Reissue
Pages:
288
Product dimensions:
6.78(w) x 4.16(h) x 0.79(d)
Lexile:
820L (what's this?)
Age Range:
14 - 18 Years

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Read an Excerpt

Chapter One

There was a man and he had eight sons. Apart from that, he was nothing more than a comma on the page of History. It's sad, but that's all you can say about some people.

But the eighth son grew up and married and had eight sons, and because there is only one suitable profession for the eighth son of an eighth son, he became a wizard. And he became wise and powerful, or at any rate powerful, and wore a pointed hat and there it would have ended ...

Should have ended . . .

But against the Lore of Magic and certainly against all reason-except the reasons of the heart, which are warm and messy and, well, unreasonable -- he fled the halls of magic and fell in love and got married, not necessarily in that order.

And he had seven sons, each one from the cradle at least as powerful as any wizard in the world.

And then he had an eighth son . . .

A wizard squared. A source of magic.

A sourcerer.

Summer thunder rolled around the sandy cliffs. Far below, the sea sucked on the shingle as noisily as an old man with one tooth who had been given a gobstopper. A few seagulls hung lazily in the updraughts, waiting for something to happen.

And the father of wizards sat among the thrift and rattling sea grasses at the edge of the cliff, cradling the child in his arms, staring out to sea.

There was a roil of black cloud out there, heading inland, and the light it pushed before it had that deep syrup quality it gets before a really serious thunderstorm.

He turned at a sudden silence behind him, and looked up through tear-reddened eyes at a tall hooded figure in a black robe.

Ipslore the Red? itsaid. The voice was as hollow as a cave, as dense as a neutron star.

lpslore grinned the terrible grin of the suddenly mad, and held up the child for Death's inspection.

"My son" he said. "I shall call him Coin."

A name as good as any other said Death politely. His empty sockets stared down at a small round face wrapped in sleep. Despite rumor, Death isn't cruel -- merely terribly, terribly good at his job.

"You took his mother," said Ipslore. It was a flat statement, without apparent rancor. In the valley behind the cliffs lpslore's homestead was a smoking ruin, the rising wind already spreading the fragile ashes across the hissing dunes.

It was a heart attack at the end, said Death. There are worse ways To die take it from me

lpslore looked out to sea. "An my magic could not save her," he said.

There are places where even magic may not go.

"And now you have come for the child?"

No. The child has His own destiny I have come for you.

"Ah." The wizard stood up, carefully laid the sleeping baby down on the thin grass, and picked up a long staff that had been lying there. It was made of a black metal, with a meshwork of silver and gold carvings that gave it a rich and sinister tastelessness; the metal was octiron, intrinsically magical.

"I made this, you know," he said. "They all said you couldn't make a staff out of metal, they said they should only be of wood, but they were wrong. I put a lot of myself into it. I shall give it to him."

He ran his hands lovingly along the staff, which gave off a faint tone.

He repeated, almost to himself, "I put a lot of myself into it."

It is a good staff, said Death.

Ipslore held it in the air and looked down at his eighth son, who gave a gurgle.

"She wanted a daughter," he said.

Death shrugged. Ipslore gave him a look compounded of bewilderment and rage.

"What is he?"

The eighth son of an eighth son of an eighth son said Death, unhelpfully. The wind whipped at his robe, driving the black clouds overhead.

"What does that make him?"

A sourcerer, as you are well aware.

Thunder rolled, on cue.

"What is his destiny?" shouted Ipslore, above the rising gale.

Death shrugged again. He was good at it.

sourcerers make their own destiny. They touch the earth lightly.

Ipslore leaned on the staff, drumming on it with his fingers, apparently lost in the maze of his own thoughts. His left eyebrow twitched.

"No," he said, softly, "no. I will make his destiny for him."

I advise against it.

"Be quiet! And listen when I tell you that they drove me out, with their books and their rituals and their Lore! They called themselves wizards, and they had less magic in their whole fat bodies than I have in my little finger! Banished! Me! For showing that I was human! And what would humans be without love?"

Rare, said Death. Nevertheless --

"Listen! They drove us here, to the ends of the world, and that killed her! They tried to take 'my staff away!" Ipslore was screaming above the noise of the wind.

"Well, I still have some power left:' he snarled. "And I say that my son shall go to Unseen University and wear the Archchancellor's hat and the wizards of the world shall bow to him! And he shall show them what lies in their deepest hearts. Their craven, greedy hearts. He'll show the world its true destiny, and there will be no magic greater than his."

No. And the strange thing about the quiet way Death spoke the word was this: it was louder than the roaring of the storm. It jerked lpslore back to momentary sanity.

lpslore rocked back and forth uncertainly. 'What?" he said.

I said No. Nothing is Final. Nothing is absolute. Except me, of course. Such tinkering with destiny could mean tee downfall of the world. There must be a chance, however small. The lawyers of fate demand a loophole in every prophecy...

Sourcery. Copyright © by Terry Pratchett. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.

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Meet the Author

Terry Pratchett's novels have sold more than eighty-five million (give or take a few million) copies worldwide. In January 2009, Queen Elizabeth II made Pratchett a knight in recognition of his "services to literature." Sir Terry lives in England with his wife.

Brief Biography

Hometown:
Salisbury, Wiltshire, England
Date of Birth:
April 28, 1948
Place of Birth:
Beaconsfield, Buckinghamshire, England
Education:
Four honorary degrees in literature from the universities of Portsmouth, Bristol, Bath and Warwick

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Sourcery 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 60 reviews.
1d2d3dkirby More than 1 year ago
the book is about a young prodigy who changes all of the old wizardry on discworld into violent and unstable sourcery and an innept wizard rincewind must stop it. a major message is if you have nothing you can still accomplish even the mightiest of challenges. i liked the unforced humor and satire that terry pratchett augments the story with. this book is easily appealing and would be enjoyable to most. the storyline is sometimes a bit challenging to follow as it switches from scenes so i would recommend it to those who are teenage and older. the discworld series is a phenominal story, starting with The Color of Magic, which is a particular favorite.
Guest More than 1 year ago
The book Sourcery by Terry Pratchett is a great book for anyone who enjoys a good laugh. It includes tons of fun and adventure ,and in the inept wizard Rincewind's case despair of never leading a normal life.I believe anyone who reads this book will enjoy it as much as I have.
LittleHawk More than 1 year ago
My first introduction into Discworld and still the best.
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I wholeheartedly agree. The Diskworld series are amazing, andI would reccomend for teens 13-18. For preteens around10-12, I would reccomend the Wee Free Men series.
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