Wasn’t super impressed by this one. I like the idea of Vimes investigating drug smuggling. I also liked the social commentary that Pratchett had going on, with the goblins being compared to slaves, undocumented immigrants, and so on. However, the climatic scene on the boat felt confusing to me; I was never exactly sure what was going on (maybe I was just reading it too quickly, to be fair). The biggest issue in this book for me was that I never felt like anything was at stake. Vimes, his family and his henchman Wilikins (a character I really liked) seemed too invincible to me; I never had to really “worry” that they would fail or that something bad would happen to any of them. One theme I did like in the book was that of how Vimes can connect so personally with killers and murderers. I wish the book had explored this “dark” side of Vimes a little more, as opposed to just letting him, well, always coming out on top. I mean, one of the reasons I liked “Going Postal” and “Making Money” so much was because the main character was unsympathetic to a certain degree; he wasn’t this totally clear cut, good character. I wish that Vimes’ flaws or potential for darkness had been explored a little more–the theme was definitely there; I just wanted it to be taken to the next level, just to shake the books up a little bit so that the Vimes books aren’t always in this trap of “oh Vimes saves the day and everything turns out hunky dory in the end.”

I REALLY would be interested in reading a Discworld book in which the Patrician is killed or offed. Like, what would happen?! Whatever happened to that whole storyline of Carrot being the rightful king? I’m really sad how Carrot has disappeared into this totally non-existent character (at least in this book). Maybe I’ve been watching too much of Games of Thrones but I think Discworld is in time for a major shake up. This makes me really sad to say, but considering that Pratchett’s writing time might be limited (thanks Alzheimer’s–God, so depressing, I don’t want to even think of it), it’s like, what has he got to lose at this point? I vote for something totally crazy and unexpected happening. I’d be interested in seeing where it goes…

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