In episode five, comedian Richard McKenzie joins us to discuss that rare beast, a Discworld tale that stars no wizards, witches, watches or Death, and isn’t part of any of the ongoing storylines: Pyramids! Terry Pratchett’s seventh Discworld novel, published in 1989, it’s chock-full of jokes, footnotes, gods and great characters – but we’ll see almost none of them ever again…
Pteppicymon XXVIII – Teppic for short – is heir to the throne of the ancient river kingdom of Djelibeybi. But the kingdom is broke, having spent its money on pyramids, and in order to give him a profession, Teppic is sent to the best school on the Disc: the Assassin’s Guild in Ankh-Morpork. Seven years later he’s just taken his final exam when his father dies. Teppic is now King (and God) of Djelibeybi earlier than planned – and after so long away, he finds the ancient traditions of his homeland stifling. Can even the King challenge the authority of the kingdom’s high priest, Dios?
Though it features none of his most beloved characters, Pyramids is nonetheless a favourite among Discworld fans – not least because the first quarter of the book takes us into the classrooms of Ankh-Morpork’s most famous guild. What do you think of this tale of tradition, family and mathematics gone wrong? Let us know! Use the hashtag #Pratchat5 on social media.
Guest Richard McKenzie is a comedian best known for his storytelling style. Though he rarely performs standup anymore, he hosts trivia twice a week, on Thursdays and Sundays, at the Cornish Arms on Sydney Road in Brunswick, Melbourne. Make sure to use a Pratchett pun in your team name if you go!
You can read the full show notes and errata for this episode on our web site.
Our next book, for our April 8th episode, takes us outside the Discworld – and indeed the fantasy genre – for 2012’s tale of Victorian London: Dodger! Joining us to talk about toshers, geezers and peelers is a man who’s no stranger to fancy words, and better known by his initials: crypto-cruciverbalist and former Letters & Numbers dictionary master, David Astle! We’ll be recording on March 24th, so get your questions in before then if you’d like us to answer them on the podcast. You can use the hashtag #Pratchat6 to ask them via social media. (And check out the Episodes page if you want to see a bit further into our future schedule!)