Sunday, September 19, 2021

The Fifth Elephant by Terry Prachett


Sam Vimes is doing exactly what he wants, serving as Commander of the Night Watch in Ankh-Morpork.  But he did marry Lady Sybil and as such is now part of the royalty.  Due to this, he is sent to Uberwald to attend the coronation of the dwarf new Low King, an event that has the potential for many issues as there are charges of theft of royal artifacts and attempted assassinations.  Sam doesn't want to go but Lady Sybil has already packed so off they go.

Some of the Night Watch goes along.  There is Cheery Littlebottom, a transgender dwarf, scorned by the dwarves in Uberwald.  Angua has gone ahead of them.  As a werewolf, she is worried about her brother who will kill anything in his path.  Gavin, king of the wolves, is attracted to Angua as is Captain Carrot, a six-foot dwarf.  Gaspode is a talking dog who feels that he is six foot tall also and lives his life as if he was rather than being a very small terrier.

Sam finds lots of dissension in Uberwald.  There are three factions of dwarves and the proposed Low King is a compromise between them so has little true support.  Along with the werewolves, there are influential vampires, the reigning authority among them being one of Lady Sybil's former classmates when they were girls.  There are kidnappings, murder, theft and lots of other crimes that need solving, even if Sam is not there as a policeman.  Will it all come right in the end?

This is the twenty-fourth novel in the Discworld series.  It is fun and full of wonderful characters and events.  While the plot gets complicated, all is resolved satisfactorily in the end.  Sam Vimes is a marvelous character and readers will fall in love with him.  This book is recommended for fantasy readers.

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