The fifth Discworld novel is even funnier than the previous ones, and that’s mainly because once again it centres around the hapless wizard Rincewind. The story returns to the idea from Equal Rites that an eighth son of an eighth son is a wizard, by introducing a “Sourcerer” (spelling intentional), who is the eighth son of a wizard.
So, a young boy shows up at Unseen University, who happens to be the Sourcerer and takes over, creating chaos, although for a lot of the story this is not particularly important, partly because it is very similar to parts of the previous books, with the main point of the story being so that Rincewind can have even more hilarious misadventures, and the book introduces some hilarious characters – a Barbarian warrior whose battle cry is “Excuse me, please” and a genie who uses an answerphone. The luggage from the first two books reappears and actually gets his/her own plotline, even getting emotions for others.
Most of the storyline of the book is absolutely bizarre, but it leads to an entertaining climactic confrontation with the Sourcerer, who is apparently controlled by a magic staff containing his father’s spirit. The ending is a bit of a shock, but it is also very enjoyable.
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