Tuesday, 23 September 2003

Thief of time & evidence of real work, honest

Listening to:

Oscar Peterson plays the Harold Arlen song book.

Just read:

Terry Pratchett, Thief of time.

I read this on the plane from Sydney to Singapore and greatly enjoyed it. It features Susan, Death’s grand-daughter, and a group of monks whose responsibility it is to make sure that the Discworld’s use of Time is kept under control. The bad guys in this novel are the Auditors, who have featured in previous installments. New to this novel though, there is a very nice twist when they materialise into the Discworld, and leave the other dimensions they usually inhabit.

One of the monks of Time takes on a new apprentice, and this gives Practchett lots to play with in the Karate Kid, Zen monk dispensing wisdom line. And then, there is the fifth Horseman of the Apocalypse, who left before the others became famous. And then there is the geeky clock-maker, at whose hands all of creation may be threatened, as long as he keeps taking his pills. All in all, this is a very good comic novel, with lots of amusing threads that come together very well in the dramatic finale.

To review next:

Iain M. Banks, Use of weapons.

[Me expounding] [The ICFP/Merlin venue]

Just in case you thought I was away on a four week jolly, I’d like to provide some evidence that I did do some work. If you click through to the bigger image behind the thumbnail, you should even be able to read the slide I’m showing. Incidentally, the Apple I’m using to present the slides isn’t mine. I left my laptop in London, and had just sent my slides to the conference organisers in advance.

And on the other side of the page, I hope you can see a picture of the interior of the conference’s very grand venue, Uppsala University's Universitetshuset.