Finding himself alone on a desert island when everything and everyone he knows and loved has been washed away in a huge storm, Mau is the last surviving member of his nation. He's also completely alone - or so he thinks until he finds the ghost girl. She has no toes, wears strange lacy trousers like the grandfather bird and gives him a stick that can make fire.
Daphne, sole survivor of the wreck of the Sweet Judy, almost immediately regrets trying to shoot the native boy. Thank goodness the powder was wet and the gun only produced a spark. She's certain her father, distant cousin of the Royal family, will come and rescue her, but it seems, for now, all she has for company is the boy and the foul-mouthed ship's parrot.
As it happens, they are not alone for long. Other survivors start to arrive to take refuge on the island they all call the Nation, and then raiders accompanied by murderous mutineers from the Sweet Judy. Together, Mau and Daphne discover some remarkable things - including how to milk a pig and why spitting in beer is a good thing - and start to forge a new Nation.
As can be expected from Terry Pratchett, the master story-teller, this new children's novel is both witty and wise, encompassing themes of death and nationhood, while being extremely funny. Mau's ancestors have something to teach us all. Mau just wishes they would shut up about it and let him get on with saving everyone's lives!
©2008 Terry and Lyn Pratchett (P)2009 ISIS Publishing
For some reason, even though I am a big TP fan, this book never interested me when it was first released. DemonBoy was I wrong! It is engaging from the beginning, parts will have you laughing out loud and then sobbing. Although it seems to be a 'one off' series, the characters are well developed and in no time you feel that you have known them all your life. Don't put it off as I did, get this today
A great story well put together and nicely narrated. Not a Disc World novel but has the humour and observation of people that we appreciate in Terry Pratchett's writing
At the start it was not the usual Pratchett beginnings but as i went on i thought of the Bromeliad, which is one of my favourite books of all time, which is also not diskworldish. That is the trouble when you have made such a success of one set of books (which i also love) you automatically expect the same type of thread to carry on. Nation is a heartwarming and also heartrending story of love. Pure and simple. It tells of compassion in people who are at the end of their world and how love and determination turns a Nation around. With Stephen Briggs reading, you are drawn into the heart of the story straight away. His illustrative voices are brilliant and really make the story listenable. It is quite simply perfect.
"Best Book Ever"
In Nation, Pratchett dispenses with his usual Disc World plots and give us instead a This World plot from our not very distant past with, of course, a typical Pratchett-esque twist. Taking history on a slightly different course to emphasize a point, Pratchett does that which he does so very well - makes us look at ourselves a little differently. He does so with a great deal of wit and humor, giving us heroes and heroines to root for, and a cadre of supporting characters to completely charm us. And just maybe, if we aren't careful, we might end up learning something.
Read most excellently by Stephen Briggs, this is an audiobook for anyone who likes a good adventure yarn.
Briggs does an excellent job of narrating. It's clear that he is enjoying the story just as much as the listener, and he really brings all the characters to life. It's like listening to the best ever bedtime story-teller.
Mau's epiphany on the water, when he realizes that however flawed the gods of his world have proven to be, they serve a purpose.
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