Over the past couple of years I have been engaged in the mammoth challenge of reading the entire Discworld Series in order. No easy task for a series which currently sits at thirty seven titles (over forty if you include the science books and other various titles). So far in my quest I have managed to get through the first seven books in the series, the most recent of which is Pyramids.
Pyramids is quite a different book from the six previous. For the most part the other titles have stayed located around the same general area, the city of Ankh-Morpork and the surrounding country, while the city does make an appearance the majority of the novel is spent in on the other side of the disc in a dessert culture named Djelebeybi.
Djelebeybi is the Discworld equivalent of ancient Egypt and we are introduced to many amusing parodies on the Egyptian way of life (mummifying kings inside gigantic pyramids even though building these monoliths is bankrupting the country) and an overall mockery of the notion of pyramid power.
However, I don’t feel this book works as well as previous instalments in the series, it’s still a very funny book but I didn’t get as many belly laughs as I had reading the last book in the series (Wyrd Sisters). The plot rambles a little and the book could stand to be slightly shorter overall.
There are still a wealth of funny moments, the idea that camels are great mathematicians but keep the knowledge secret so humans won’t kill them to find how their brains work, just not a wealth on par with the other books that came before it.
It’s hard really to recommend a Discworld book anyway, the whole series should be viewed intact, taking a single book out of the large body of work seems wrong somehow.
If you are reading the series as a whole, you’ll find this a weaker entry but one that does a great job of expanding the disc and fleshing out a world that so far we’ve seen quite little of.